“It’s hot, and Wales have been a little bit bothered by Iran,” says the BBC commentator Steve Wilson.
Wales have had most of the ball but Iran have been the more dangerous team on the counter-attack. Ali Gholizadeh and Sardar Azmoun combined for a fantastic goal that was ruled out for offside; at the other end, Kieffer Moore’s flying volley was beaten away by Hossein Hosseini.
45+4 min The resulting free-kick ricochets dangerously around the area before being cleared. Then Nourollahi hits a long-range shot that is well held by Hennessey. It was straight at him but bounced awkwardly just in front.
45+3 min Rodon is booked for an absurd sliding foul on Taremi.
45+2 min Iran work the ball patiently on the right, until Ezatolahi suddenly whips a fantastic cross towards the six-yard line. Azmoun and Rodon both lunge for the ball, but it evades them both and bounces to safety. Azmoun was goalside, and for a split-second it looked like he was going to score.
45 min There will be four added minutes.
43 min The BBC picture disappears for a few seconds. Happily for them, Bale doesn’t pick that moment to roof one from 40 yards.
43 min The corner is claimed with authority by Hossein Hosseini.
42 min Good play from Wales. Davies guides a good ball into Moore on the edge of the area, and he touches it off first time (or miscontrols it, I’m not entirely sure) towards the onrushing Wilson. He hits a first-time shot that is blocked by Pouraliganji and spins over the bar for the first corner of the match.
40 min Free-kick to Iran, 40 yards out. Hajisafi overhits it slightly and it goes behind for a goalkick. Both teams look like they are ready for a breather.
39 min Bale galumphs down the left and drives a low cross that is kicked away by Majid Hosseini.
38 min “I’m an American who lives in Cardiff with my Welsh husband,” writes Gwyneth Galvin. “I’m visiting my Ohioan family for the holidays, but I set my alarm for 5am so I could catch the match. I’m currently under the covers, suffering a food hangover only made worse by the anxiety of this game. Go on Wales!”
37 min Wilson finds Williams in space on the left side of the area, but his first touch is heavy and Rezaeian makes a good tackle. That was half a chance for Wales.
35 min Rodon is living on the edge against Azmoun. He makes another desperate last-ditch tackle to stop Azmoun running onto a long ball forward.
Rodin has been left one v one quite a lot, which is slightly surprising given that Wales have three central defenders and he is theoretically the spare man.
35 min “Hi Rob,” says Anshuman Pande. “You linked an excellent Gorky’s song at the start of the MBM today. Over the years, lots of your Guardian colleagues on MBM duties have also linked some absolute beauts. Might I suggest a yearly playlist of some of the best MBM music? I’m sure it will beat EA’s playlist by miles.”
That’s a good idea. When the group stages are over, and assuming I don’t forget, I’ll try to set one up.
34 min A bit of a quiet spell. If they didn’t know before – and to be fair, I’m sure they did – Wales realise now that they are well and truly in a game.
33 min “Hello from the stadium,” says Pierre Martins. “There is a dude with the world’s most annoying vuvuzela sat next to me. Var ruling the goal offside made him sad.”
I wouldn’t like to run into the world’s least annoying vuvuzela, never mind the most annoying.
31 min Here’s more on the slightly unexpected sight of the Iran players singing their national anthem before the game.
31 min You could never leave Gareth Bale out – imagine the state of Twitter – but part of me wonders whether, particularly in this heat, you might get more bang for your Bale by bringing him on for the last half hour. Anyway, it’s irrelevant.
30 min Bale, hitherto anonymous, mishits a long-range volley through to Hosseini.
28 min Azmoun is okay to continue, at least for now.
27 min This is a concern for Iran: Azmoun is receiving treatment for the calf problem that has kept him out for the last couple of months. He’s been a serious handful for Wales.
26 min Iran break at pace again. Azmoun tries to run the last man Rodon, who times his lunging challenge perfectly.
Gholizadeh shoves Williams over, then chooses to berate him for some reason.
24 min Williams is limping heavily after being wiped out by Rezaeian. It wasn’t a particularly malicious foul, and it was Rezaeian who alerted the referee so that he could stop play.
24 min Here’s that early chance for Kieffer Moore. I’ll post the disallowed goal, which really was a gem, as soon as it appears on the BBC Twitter feed. Talking of which, treat yourself to the Joy of Six: Goals That Never Were. Not now.
23 min Rezaeian’s free-kick is headed wide by Azmoun, leaping above Rodon at the far post. He couldn’t get over the ball.
22 min Ampadu trips the raiding Rezaeian 35 yards from goal. Iran have been terrific so far.
20 min “Phew!” says Matt Dony. “I flipping love VAR.”
A quick for Wales fans – are you on the beer? I can still remember folk in suits hurrying through pre-work pints at 7am on a Friday, as if it was their national duty, when England played Brazil in the 2002 quarter-final.
20 min Another very dangerous Iran break ends when Nourollahi’s shot is blocked by Rodon. Iran are the better team at the moment, no question about that.
18 min Bale goes down holding his face after wearing a straight arm from Mohammadi. It was a foul but no more.
As disallowed goals go, it was a beauty. Roberts’ dodgy square pass was nicked by Gholizadeh, who played a dizzying exchange of passes with Azmoun – one, two, three, four – before walking the ball into the net. But when the last pass was played, Gholizadeth was slightly – and needlessly – offside. Azmoun could have taken the shot himself as well.
This will be ruled out for offside
VAR permitting, this is a wonderful goal from Iran!
13 min Moore stays down for a bit, but after receiving treatment he is back on his feet.
12 min: Good save by Hosseini! Davies sprays a crossfield pass out to Roberts, who pulls it down and shapes a lovely cross towards the near post. Moore stretches to stab an instinctive volley from six yards that is parried away by Hossein Hosseini. Had Moore’s volley gone either side of the keeper he would probably have scored. To exacerbate his pain, Majid Hosseini accidentally kicks him in the face in his follow through.