- Iran goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand became an overnight star after saving a penalty kick from Cristiano Ronaldo on Monday
- The 25-year-old suffered great hardships on his way to the top, making for a truly inspirational story
In heartwarming FIFA World Cup News, Alireza Beiranvand created history at the Mordovia Arena on Monday night. The Iranian goalkeeper became an overnight star after he blocked a penalty kick taken by none other than the great Cristiano Ronaldo during the Iran vs Portugal Group B encounter. He is, in fact, the first goalkeeper to save a World Cup penalty from a Portuguese player in the tournament’s long history.
Alireza Beiranvand is the first goalkeeper to save a World Cup penalty from a Portuguese player in the tournament's history (excl. shootouts).
Cristiano Ronaldo the victim. 👐 pic.twitter.com/BzSDCXSQ8D
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) June 25, 2018
While he became one of the very few people in this world who can say “I have saved a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty“, it is his story of making it to the World Cup which needs more attention if we are to elaborate on this FIFA World Cup 2018 News. If one looks back at Beiranvand’s past life – the struggles that he went through – his epic life story could be an inspiration for millions around the globe.
Beiranvand’s story of struggle and perseverance
His journey to the biggest stage in international football has been extremely long and tough as he ran away from home at a very young age and was even homeless for some time.
Beiranvand proceeded to work in a dress factory, a car wash and as a street cleaner but he continued to play with local clubs, and he made his professional debut with Naft Tehran as a 19-year-old.
“I slept by the club’s door and when I got up in the morning I noticed the coins that people had dropped for me. They had thought I was a beggar! Well, I had a delicious breakfast for the first time in a long while,” he said.
Iran’s goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand ran away from home, grew up homeless, and slept outside his local team's football stadium. People gave him change because they thought he was a beggar. Tonight he's just saved a penalty against Cristiano Ronaldo in the World Cup.
— Mootaz Chehade (@MHChehade) June 25, 2018
The 25-year-old keeper was born to a nomadic family who moved around the country looking for grassland for their sheep. He played football as a kid, but he was a striker until an injury to his team’s goalie switched him to his current position. His family, however, didn’t approve of his choices and wanted him to focus on his career.
“My father didn’t like football at all and he asked me to work,” Beiranvand said. “He even tore my clothes and gloves and I played with bare hands several times.”
Iranian goalkeeper ,slept in the street, worked in a car wash and was homeless in order for him to make his dream of playing football come true. He ran away from his nomad lifestyle to Tehran and struggled to reach his dream, tonight he blocked a penalty by #ronaldo. #motivation pic.twitter.com/87SplGzB2p
— Steven nabil (@thestevennabil) June 25, 2018
After all the struggles and tough times he had to face in his early years, Beiranvand became a professional football and realised his dream of representing his nation at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Heck, he even saved a penalty from Cristiano Ronaldo.
Dreams do come true. Never give up.
WATCH: Iran vs Portugal Match Highlights
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