Iran and Nigeria played out the first draw of the 2014 World Cup as their Group F opener ended goalless.

Nigeria dominated possession but created few chances against a disciplined side managed by ex-Manchester United coach Carlos Queiroz.

The Super Eagles' best opportunities came in the first half, when Ogenyi Onazi fired a yard wide before Ahmed Musa went close with a free-kick.

Iran's Reza Ghoochannejad forced a great save from Vincent Enyeama.

Match analysis

"The decision making in the final third when Nigeria managed to get there was poor. They made the wrong choices. The quality of the balls into the box was poor and they didn't play to their strengths.

"This is the game they should have wanted to go out and win and you would think there would be more urgency in their play."

The share of the points leaves both teams well placed in the group after Argentina defeated Bosnia-Hercegovina.

African champions Nigeria were fancied to go through with the South American giants, but the pressure is now on them to beat the section's only European side, who impressed in their first ever World Cup match on Sunday.

Iran, on the other hand, will be buoyed by this result and will be looking to cause one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history on Saturday against Argentina.

They performed diligently, with Queiroz getting the best out of a group of players who stuck rigidly to the tactics employed.

Their conservative approach, with midfielders Javad Nekounam and Andranik Timotian as an extra line of defence for the backline, frustrated Nigeria.

Stephen Keshi's side were limited to only a couple of chances despite having the lion's share of possession. The first fell to Lazio forward Onazi, who slammed his shot a foot wide before Musa almost caught out goalkeeper Alireza Haghighi with his quick thinking from a free-kick.

Ironically, Iran had the best chance to score despite their only effort on goal coming when Charlton's Ghoochannejad, who spent much of his career to date playing in the Dutch and Belgian leagues, forced a excellent reaction save from Enyeama, playing in his third World Cup.

Match facts

  • This was Nigeria's second World Cup goalless draw in their 15th match - the other being against England in 2002
  • Iran had one effort on target, the joint-fewest by a team in a game in this tournament, along with Honduras and Cameroon
  • Two teams have failed to score against Nigeria in the Super Eagles' last nine World Cup games: England and Iran

Keshi - the mastermind behind Nigeria's unexpected Cup of Nations win last year - tinkered with his attack after the break by bringing on former Newcastle stalwart Shola Ameobi and fellow forward Peter Odemwingie of Stoke.

The tactical swaps almost paid dividends in the 71st minute, when Ameobi headed wide from eight yards, but he had conceded a foul in the process.

The former Magpie also had a chance in the closing minutes, but on this occasion his goalbound header was easily cleared by Mehrdad Pooladi.

That draw now means Nigeria have not won a World Cup match in nine attempts - the longest streak in the competition. They might need to rethink their strategy against Bosnia-Hercegovina if they do not want that run to continue.

Iran coach Carlos Queiroz:

" We played against a great team and it was necessary to play a realistic game. We fought for every ball, every space and played 90 minutes with one thing in our mind. My players need to be congratulated.

"Now it's Argentina and the most important thing is that everything is open to us."

Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi:

"Respect to Iran, they had their game plan to sit back and defend and they did well.

"Win or lose I'm criticized. A draw now, I'll be criticized. It's part of the game. In my country, it's win at all costs and sometimes it doesn't go that way.''

Nigeria forward Peter Odemwingie talking to BBC World Service:

"We expected three points from this game but everybody knows the most important game is between ourselves and Bosnia-Hercegovina.

"Next game I think will be easier and I think that will be the decider of where we will be at this World Cup."

Nigeria fans at the Arena Da Baixada in Curitiba

Nigeria fans made their presence felt at the Arena Da Baixada in Curitiba

Iran's Portuguese coach Carlos Queiroz reacts during the Group F football match between Iran and Nigeria at the Baixada Arena in Curitiba

Iran's coach Carlos Queiroz helped his side reach their first World Cup since 2006

Nigeria's goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama makes a save during their 2014 World Cup Group F soccer match against Iran

Ghoochannejhad had one of the few good chances in the match

Lineup, Bookings (1) & Substitutions (5)

Iran

  • 12 Haghighi
  • 15 Montazeri
  • 23 Pooladi
  • 06 Nekounam
  • 04 Hosseini
  • 05 Sadeqi
  • 02 Heydari (Shojaei - 89' )
  • 14 Teymourian Booked
  • 16 Ghoochanneijhad
  • 03 Hajsafi
  • 21 Dejagah (Jahanbakhsh - 78' )

Substitutes

  • 01 Ahmadi
  • 07 Shojaei
  • 08 Haghighi
  • 09 Jahanbakhsh
  • 10 Ansarifard
  • 11 Haddadifar
  • 13 Mahini
  • 17 Alnameh
  • 18 Rahmani
  • 19 Beikzadeh
  • 20 Beitashour
  • 22 Davari

Nigeria

  • 01 Enyeama
  • 05 Ambrose Emuobo
  • 13 Oshaniwa
  • 10 Mikel
  • 22 Omeruo
  • 14 Oboabona (Yobo - 29' )
  • 07 Musa
  • 17 Onazi
  • 09 Emenike
  • 15 Azeez (Odemwingie - 69' )
  • 11 Moses (Ameobi - 52' )

Substitutes

  • 02 Yobo
  • 03 Uzoenyi
  • 04 Gabriel
  • 06 Egwuekwe
  • 08 Odemwingie
  • 12 Odunlami
  • 16 Ejide
  • 18 Babatunde
  • 19 Nwofor
  • 20 Uchebo
  • 21 Agbim
  • 23 Ameobi
Ref: Carlos Vera
Att: 38,081

Match Stats

Shots

9 10

On target

1 4

Corners

2 7

Fouls

18 16

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Iran 0, Nigeria 0.

90:00 +1:59 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Iran 0, Nigeria 0.

90:00 +1:29

Kenneth Omeruo (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

90:00 +1:29

Foul by Amir Hossein Sadeqi (Iran).

90:00 +0:51

Foul by Kenneth Omeruo (Nigeria).

90:00 +0:51

Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

90:00 +0:09

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Mehrdad Pooladi.

90:00 +0:07

Attempt blocked. Shola Ameobi (Nigeria) header from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by John Obi Mikel with a cross.

89:39

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Mehrdad Pooladi.

88:59 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Iran. Masoud Shojaei replaces Khosro Heydari.

88:11

John Obi Mikel (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

88:11

Foul by Andranik Teymourian (Iran).

86:28

Attempt saved. Shola Ameobi (Nigeria) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top left corner. Assisted by Efe Ambrose with a cross.

85:05

Efe Ambrose (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

85:05

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

82:58

John Obi Mikel (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

82:58

Foul by Andranik Teymourian (Iran).

82:03

Hand ball by Peter Odemwingie (Nigeria).

80:22

Attempt missed. Andranik Teymourian (Iran) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Ehsan Hajsafi.

78:30

Foul by Juwon Oshaniwa (Nigeria).

78:30

Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) wins a free kick on the right wing.

77:34 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Iran. Alireza Jahanbakhsh replaces Ashkan Dejagah.

75:22

Attempt saved. Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Peter Odemwingie.

74:30 Booking

Booking Andranik Teymourian (Iran) is shown the yellow card.

74:20

Peter Odemwingie (Nigeria) wins a free kick on the left wing.

74:20

Foul by Andranik Teymourian (Iran).

73:42

Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

73:42

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

69:59

Foul by Shola Ameobi (Nigeria).

69:59

Amir Hossein Sadeqi (Iran) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

69:34

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

68:55

Delay in match Mehrdad Pooladi (Iran) because of an injury.

68:53 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Nigeria. Peter Odemwingie replaces Ramón Azeez.

67:22

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Andranik Teymourian.

67:10

John Obi Mikel (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

67:10

Foul by Andranik Teymourian (Iran).

66:39

Kenneth Omeruo (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

66:39

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

66:15

Attempt missed. Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) left footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Javad Nekounam.

65:09

Foul by Emmanuel Emenike (Nigeria).

65:09

Ehsan Hajsafi (Iran) wins a free kick on the left wing.

64:17

Corner, Iran. Conceded by Juwon Oshaniwa.

63:43

Attempt blocked. John Obi Mikel (Nigeria) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

62:46

Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

62:46

Foul by Andranik Teymourian (Iran).

62:14

Attempt missed. Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) right footed shot from more than 35 yards misses to the left. Assisted by Pejman Montazeri.

60:48

Attempt missed. Ehsan Hajsafi (Iran) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Javad Nekounam.

59:52

Juwon Oshaniwa (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

59:52

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

57:51

Attempt missed. Emmanuel Emenike (Nigeria) right footed shot from the right side of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Shola Ameobi.

55:28

Foul by Juwon Oshaniwa (Nigeria).

55:28

Khosro Heydari (Iran) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

53:13

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Jalal Hosseini.

51:54

Efe Ambrose (Nigeria) wins a free kick on the right wing.

51:54

Foul by Mehrdad Pooladi (Iran).

51:27 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Nigeria. Shola Ameobi replaces Victor Moses.

50:50

Attempt blocked. Javad Nekounam (Iran) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ashkan Dejagah.

50:18

Foul by Joseph Yobo (Nigeria).

50:18

Ashkan Dejagah (Iran) wins a free kick on the left wing.

49:34

Attempt missed. Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Ehsan Hajsafi.

48:20

Foul by Ahmed Musa (Nigeria).

48:20

Pejman Montazeri (Iran) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

47:36

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Javad Nekounam.

46:43

Juwon Oshaniwa (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

46:43

Foul by Pejman Montazeri (Iran).

46:14

Foul by Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria).

46:14

Ashkan Dejagah (Iran) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

45:53

Attempt blocked. Andranik Teymourian (Iran) right footed shot from more than 35 yards is blocked.

45:00

Second Half begins Iran 0, Nigeria 0.

45:00 +2:04 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Iran 0, Nigeria 0.

45:00 +1:35

Dangerous play by Ahmed Musa (Nigeria).

45:00 +1:35

Javad Nekounam (Iran) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

42:56

Ramón Azeez (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

42:56

Foul by Andranik Teymourian (Iran).

41:16

Attempt blocked. Javad Nekounam (Iran) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

39:51

Attempt missed. Emmanuel Emenike (Nigeria) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Efe Ambrose.

38:08

Attempt missed. Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Juwon Oshaniwa.

36:22

Kenneth Omeruo (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

36:22

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

35:49

Foul by John Obi Mikel (Nigeria).

35:49

Ashkan Dejagah (Iran) wins a free kick on the left wing.

33:37

Attempt saved. Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) header from very close range is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Ashkan Dejagah with a cross.

33:06

Corner, Iran. Conceded by Juwon Oshaniwa.

31:48

Offside, Iran. Ehsan Hajsafi tries a through ball, but Ashkan Dejagah is caught offside.

31:34

Foul by John Obi Mikel (Nigeria).

31:34

Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

30:34

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Alireza Haghighi.

30:29

Attempt saved. Ahmed Musa (Nigeria) right footed shot from long range on the left is saved in the bottom left corner.

29:34

Ramón Azeez (Nigeria) wins a free kick on the left wing.

29:34

Foul by Pejman Montazeri (Iran).

28:51 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Nigeria. Joseph Yobo replaces Godfrey Oboabona because of an injury.

21:08

Hand ball by Victor Moses (Nigeria).

20:40

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

19:24

Delay in match Godfrey Oboabona (Nigeria) because of an injury.

18:53

John Obi Mikel (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

18:53

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

18:04

Foul by Godfrey Oboabona (Nigeria).

18:04

Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) wins a free kick on the right wing.

15:59

John Obi Mikel (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

15:59

Foul by Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran).

12:46

Foul by John Obi Mikel (Nigeria).

12:46

Reza Ghoochanneijhad (Iran) wins a free kick on the right wing.

9:33

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

8:51

Delay in match Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria) because of an injury.

8:05

Attempt missed. Ogenyi Onazi (Nigeria) right footed shot from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Ramón Azeez.

6:56

Foul by John Obi Mikel (Nigeria).

6:56

Alireza Haghighi (Iran) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

6:28

Corner, Nigeria. Conceded by Pejman Montazeri.

2:43

Attempt saved. Victor Moses (Nigeria) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by John Obi Mikel.

0:41

Efe Ambrose (Nigeria) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

0:41

Foul by Ashkan Dejagah (Iran).

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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