Aziz Bouhaddouz headed a free kick into his own net in the fifth minute of injury time to gift Iran a 1-0 victory over Morocco on Friday at the World Cup.
Only on the field as a 77th-minute substitute, the Morocco striker dived to reach a curling cross from the left, trying to knock it out of play, but headed the ball into the net past goalkeeper Monir El Kajoui.
President Trump said in a tweet Friday that he worked hard on the effort to bring the 2026 World Cup to North America and thanked Bob Kraft, owner of the NFL's New England Patriots and Major League Soccer's New England Revolution.
Thank you for all of the compliments on getting the World Cup to come to the U.S.A., Mexico and Canada. I worked hard on this, along with a Great Team of talented people. We never fail, and it will be a great World Cup! A special thanks to Bob Kraft for excellent advice.
Trump signed letters to FIFA President Gianni Infantino expressing confidence World Cup delegations and fans would be welcomed for the tournament. Although of no legal force, the letters were used in lobbying by the U.S. Soccer Federation and the joint North American bid competed against Morocco's. The North American bid won 134-65 in voting by FIFA members on Wednesday.
Trump tweeted Friday “Thank you for all of the compliments on getting the World Cup to come to the U.S.A., Mexico and Canada. I worked hard on this, along with a Great Team of talented people. We never fail, and it will be a great World Cup! A special thanks to Bob Kraft for excellent advice.”
For many, the World Cup gives people a chance to sideline politics and unite under the feel-good umbrella of sports diplomacy.
In the current geopolitical climate, fat chance of that.
The World Cup kicked off in Russia after all. (You might have heard a thing or two in the news and all over social media about Russia since the last presidential election.) And one of the other participants in the highly anticipated event is Iran. (Ditto.)
The 2018 FIFA World Cup is finally here. Billions worldwide will be tuning in for the monthlong tournament as 32 national teams compete for a chance to become global champion.
Because of the time difference with Russia, where the tournament is beind held, all of the games will be broadcast early in the morning, Pacific time (you can find the full schedule here). Early kickoffs or not, Angelenos have plenty of options to catch the games at public venues.
Russia opened its World Cup on Thursday with a quick, energetic opening ceremony that featured a giant fire bird made from crepe paper, English pop singer Robbie Williams flipping off the cameras, a lot of juggling and a speech from President Vladimir Putin.
Then Russia’s national team went out and provided an encore, riding two goals from Denis Cheryshev and single scores from Yury Gazinsky, Artem Dzuba and Roman Zobnin to a 5-0 win over Saudi Arabia before a crowd of 78,011 at Luzhniki Stadium.
Igor Akinfeev picked up the shutout in goal without making a save.
Spain will go into the World Cup under new management after the country’s soccer association fired manager Julen Lopetegui on Wednesday, two days before its tournament opener against Portugal in Sochi, Russia.