#75 // Azmoun → Beiranvand Iran 0 – 0 Oman

Not often that an assist is made to a goalkeeper.

Or an assist with no pass at all, and no goal.

But Sardar Azmoun just gave the most supernatural bit of assistance you’ll see.




Ahmed Kano is readying for a penalty kick, second minute of a scoreless game.

2019 Asian Cup. Round of 16.

An elimination game, in which every goal might end up being the decisive one.

He takes a breath, hands on his hips, with nothing more than a look over at the bench…


And Iran’s striker, Sardar Azmoun, with that goal-scorer’s intuition, detects something.

He lifts his right arm, raises the pointer finger, and signals to the keeper:

“The shot’s coming to the left, my friend.”



Kano charges, shoots, and—sure enough, it’s to the left.

Alireza Beiranvand saves it.

The same guy who saved a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty in the 2018 World Cup.


And who threw the ball about 80 yards a week ago:



And who has a heck of a life story:



And so, tonight, another chapter—the penalty save in the opening minute, keeping Iran alive in a game they went on to win 2-0.

Here was the scene at the stadium, in Abu Dhabi:



So maybe Beiranvand is one of the great, intuitive goalkeepers around.

Or maybe, he’s just had a world-class finger pointer in his squad…

Gesturing, in each one of these games, exactly what to do. And when.



You know that new movie out, Glass?

The thematic sequel to Unbreakable, about the potential for people in our own world to possess secret powers.

Well, Mr. Azmoun, assuming you don’t want the world to know you have a such a power…


Next time, you better be a little more subtle.