Iran showed endeavour in the opening half and didn't just come to park the bus, but it still made for a dull half of few chances. Kim Shin-Wook blasted a volley over the bar from inside the area, but there were few clear chances for the hosts until Han Kook-Young surged into the area, but the Iranian defence was alert to crowd him out and deny him a chance on goal.
After half-time, South Korea looked to continue their dominance, yet were stunned as a more positive Iran took a shock lead with their first effort on goal. Kim Young-Gwon, tidying up a routine loose ball towards his own goal, dawdled and allowed himself to be outpaced and outmuscled by Reza Ghoochanehjad, who curled a delightful finish around Jung Sung-Ryong and into the far corner to send the travelling Iranian fans wild with delight.
Korea simply couldn't get going, and Iran continued to make forays into the opposition half, but the hosts had a great opportunity to equalise with a free-kick on the right side of the area. The delivery found a crowded back-post, and chaos ensued, as a combination of the prone Rahman Ahmadi and a series of scrambling Iranian players, desperately flopping like dying salmon, managed to deny Kim Young-Won and Son Heung-Min from close range in an amazing goalmouth scramble.
By the end of the game, Iran were desperately hacking clear ball after ball as the Koreans maintained a furious onslaught, but when one found Lee Keun-Ho free, 12 yards out, his header fell just wide of the goal and Iran survived to clinch an incredible victory in South Korea and secure qualification for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.