Iraq advances to Asian Cup Semifinal on penalties over Iran

Crew SC's Justin Meram started and played 45 minutes in Iraq's wild, 3-3 (7-6) win over Iran in the AFC Asian Cup Semifinal early Friday morning in Canberra, Australia. Iran took a lead in the 24th minute as Sardar Azmoun would finish past Iraqi 'keeper Jalal Hassan to make it 1-0. But after Iran went down to 10 men following a second yellow card issued to Mehrdad Pooladi just before halftime, Iraq would rally in the second half with Ahmed Yasin scoring the equalizer in the 56th minute. The drama continued into extratime as the two countries traded goals twice, with Iran forcing a penalty-kick shootout in the 119th minute. The Lions of Mesopotamia would go on to advance 7-6 in the shootout.

Iraq now faces Korea Republic in the Semifinal at 4:00 a.m. ET Monday morning, January 26. Host nation Australia and the United Arab Emirates square-off in the other Semifinal match.