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U.S. Advances To Knockout Round With 1-0 Victory Over Iran

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One of the most politically charged World Cup games in recent history is over as the United States beat Iran 1-0 on Tuesday to advance to the World Cup’s knockout stage.

The victory over Iran is one of the most important American wins in a long time. Making it to the next step is a huge goal as the team failed to even qualify for the last World Cup four years ago. The U.S. will face the Netherlands on Saturday.

The American team survived an injury to their star, Christian Pulisic, and a panicky ending. After they dominated the ball for most of the game, Iran finally found its footing on the attack late in the game, but it couldn’t score against the U.S.

Right around the game’s 38th minute, Pulisic put the Americans up by one with the game’s only goal, charging into the net and sacrificing his own body in the process.

The crowd was momentarily bolstered by the goal, but quieted as Pulisic struggled to get up and was eventually helped off the field.

Tuesday’s match was widely watched given the tense U.S.-Iran relations, the larger tournament implications for both teams, and the conflicts surrounding the ongoing human rights protest movement in Iran, wich is facing growing unrest as hundreds of thousands of Iranians have taken to the streets in protest since the Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old woman, died in police custody.

The protests are the biggest challenge to the authoritarian regime since 1979’s Islamic Revolution.

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