A decisive strike by Chelsea's Christian Pulisic seven minutes into the second session broke Iranian hearts while helping USA to a 1-0 win in a match which drew interest on and off the field considering the long-standing political hostilities between the two countries.
On Tuesday at the Al Thumama Stadium, the Chelsea striker scored the only goal of the match in the 43rd minute. Pulisic's lone strike took them into the last-16 stage where they will take on The Netherlands on Saturday.
The US, returning to the World Cup for the first time in eight years, thus finished with five points with one win and two draws and sailed into the knock outs as group runners up and will face The Netherlands, the winners of Group A. The USA have two draws, 1-1 with Wales and 0-0 against England.
Iran, who were thrashed 6-2 by England but recovered to beat Wales 2-0, finished with three points, for the 2-0 win over Wales, who were returning to the World cup after a 64 years absence lost all their league matches.
For Iran, who never have gone past the group stage, the wait to play in the knockout will move to another World Cup.
England topped the group after a 3-0 win over Wales and will take on African Cup Champions Senegal, the Group A runners up in the knockout stage.
The Americans had most of the ball possession in the first half and completely dominated Iran who, from the first minute, looked to be playing for the draw that would have almost certainly put them through.
Although Coach Gregg Berhalter was under so much pressure from the wings the lack of a final ball to break open the defence was sadly missing. But the US did score a goal but Tim Weah was pulled offside in the first half.
After a few close calls West McKennie's long diagonal finds Sergino Dest, who comes from behind the defence to head across goal for Pulisic to bundle home. A crucial strike and a courageous finish, and the Chelsea winger got injured himself in the process. It's a brave effort as Ali Beiranvand comes out to clear. The keeper's knee smacked into Pulisic and he was badly hurt and was being treated.
Thereafter in the second half Iran and USA tried to break open the defence but without any results with the US making its way into the last 16 and Iran making their early exit.
England set to meet Senegal in knockouts
A brace from Marcus Rashford and a goal from Phil Foden helped England to trounce Wales 3-0 in the FIFA World Cup and qualify to the knockout stage as group leaders.
On Tuesday night at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium after a barren first half, the English strikers went on a goal scoring spree notching three goals within a span of 18 minutes.
Manchester United striker Rashford started the scoring in the 50th and added his second one in the 68th minute, in between Manchester city's Foden scored in the 51st minute.
England topped the group after a 3-0 win over Wales and will take on African Cup Champions Senegal, the Group A runners up in the knockout stage on Sunday.
England and USA from Group B join Senegal and The Netherlands, the two teams which made it to the last 16 stage from Group A. Other teams which have qualified for the knockouts till date are Brazil, Portugal and France, all the three having made it to the next stage with a game to spare as they have won two of the three group matches.
The US, returning to the World Cup for the first time in eight years, finished with five points with one win and two draws from Group B and sailed into the knockouts as group runners up and will face The Netherlands, the winners of Group A. The USA had two draws, 1-1 with Wales and 0-0 against England.
Iran, who were thrashed 6-2 by England but recovered to beat Wales 2-0, finished with three points, for the 2-0 win over Wales, who were returning to the World cup after a 64 years' absence, lost all their league matches.
After a sedate first half, the game sprung to life thanks to the three goals from England.
The Three Lions opened the scoring with a magnificent strike from the England forward. Rashford took a couple of steps and whipped a shot over the wall and past the diving Danny Ward in Wales goal for his second goal of the tournament and his first direct free-kick goal for England at the 2022 World Cup.
A minute later, Foden delivered on the goal scoring front of a move fashioned by Rashford and Harry Kane, the former won the highball and the latter strokes a low cross across the face of goal that Foden can't miss, 2-0.
For the Manchester City striker, it was his first for England in 16 appearances and his first in over two years in an England shirt. The 21-year-old also silenced a few of his critics in the process.
Rashford added a personal second and the team's third. The move started deep from the England defense and Kalvin Phillips launched the ball forward with precision to the Manchester United forward. Rashford did not disappoint as he carried forward the ball and in a swift action moving inside and finishing off with a low shot.
Rashford's second goal was England's 100th scored at the World Cup, while it made him just the second Manchester United player to score 3+ goals for the Three Lions at a major tournament after Bobby Charlton. "In the first half we controlled the game but we didn't create enough clear chances. We wanted a bit more thrust in the final third, to play forward a bit quicker. The second half, once we got the two goals, we knew that their spirit had probably gone. I thought we kept our discipline right until the end," England coach Gareth Southgate said after the match.