Deaf MNT Falls to IR Iran on Penalties Following 2-2 Draw in World Championship Classification Match

Chad Johnson and Chris Bourdon Twice Pulled the USA Back Level; USDMNT Closes Tournament Against France in Seventh-Place Match on Thursday, Oct. 5 at 4:30 a.m. ET

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (Oct. 3, 2023) – The U.S. Men’s Deaf National Team used goals from Chad Johnson and Chris Bourdon to twice come back from deficits and earn a 2-2 draw with IR Iran, before ultimately falling 5-4 on penalty kicks in the first of two Classification Matches at the 2023 DIFA Men’s World Deaf Football Championship on Tuesday at UPNM Stadium. With the result, the USDMNT will close out the tournament when they face France in the Seventh-Place Match on Thursday, Oct. 5 at 4:30 a.m. ET.

After Shahin Fasihi gave Iran a 1-0 lead in the second minute, the U.S. pushed for an equalizer and pulled things level in the 20th minute. A driven free kick from Will Frentz on the right side of midfield found Chad Johnson who sent a looping header from 15 yards past Iran goalkeeper Mostafa Moradi for his team-leading fourth goal of the tournament. It was also the 15th goal of his international career – the most ever scored by a USDMNT player.

Iran regained the lead three minutes after halftime when Pouria Saeidi sent a blistering shot from 23 yards out that skipped past outstretched U.S. goalkeeper Erik Jaspers in the 48th minute.

The U.S. equalized again just after the hour mark. Johnson broke down the left wing and powered past two Iran players before slicing towards the goal from the top corner of the penalty area. Despite an open lane to shoot, he instead slotted the ball to the far post where Chris Bourdon slipped it past Moradi in the 64th minute.

Both teams looked for the game-winner late, and Iran came closest when Mohammad Soleimani hit the post in the 89th minute. The U.S. survived that danger and without a regulation winner, the match proceeded straight to penalty kicks.

In the shootout, both teams converted their spot kicks through the first four rounds, with Chad Johnson, Michael Schmid, Dawson Anderson and goalkeeper Erik Jaspers finding the back of the net for the USA. In the fifth round, Chris Bourdon saw his attempt saved by Moradi, before Iran captain Iman Mohebi put home the game-winning penalty to help his side advance to Thursday’s Fifth-Place Match.

Next Up: With the defeat, the USDMNT will face France, who fell 5-2 to Germany on Tuesday, in the Seventh-Place Match on Thursday, Oct. 5. Kickoff of USA-France is set for 4:30 a.m. ET (4:30 p.m. local) from UPNM Stadium in Kuala Lumpur.


Match: U.S. Men’s Deaf National Team vs. IR Iran
Date: October 3, 2023
Competition: 2023 DIFA Men’s World Deaf Football Championships – Classification (5-8)
Venue: UPNM Stadium; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Kickoff: 4:30 a.m. ET (4:30 p.m. local)
Weather: 89 degrees, clear

Scoring Summary:    1          2          F          PK

USA                              1          1          2          4
IRN                               1          1          2          5

IRN – Shahin Fasihi                                        2nd minute
USA - Chad Johnson (Will Frentz)             19
IRN - Pouria Saeidi                                       48
USA - Chris Bourdon (Chad Johnson)      64

Penalty Kick Summary:

USA – Chad Johnson (goal), Michael Schmid (goal), Dawson Anderson (goal), Erik Jaspers (goal), Chris Bourdon (saved)

IRN - Abdolmahdi Hamouri (goal), Shahin Fasihi (goal), Esmaeil Arablou (goal), Mohsen Farzikakavand (goal), Iman Mohebi (goal)


USA: 12-Erik Jaspers; 2-David Dircio, 17-Tate Lancaster (16-Kevin Fitzpatrick, 38), 5-Will Frentz (capt.), 19-Arthur Goncalves (3-Eddie Perry, 82); 6-Trip Neil (14-Dawson Anderson, 65), 8-Braden Anderson, 10-Raul Silva (11-JP Kanashiro, 46); 13-Chad Johnson, 22-Michael Schmid, 7-Chris Bourdon

Subs not used: 1-Eric Setzer, 21-Samuel Lang, 9-Thomas Salvi, 15-Jullian Mitchell, 18-Luke Haubruge, 20-Kelly Grant

Not dressed: 4-Tristan Torbett

Head Coach: David Kunitz

IRN: 1-Mostafa Moradi, 4-Abdolmahdi Hamouri, 5-Ali Salimisiakolaei (7-Mohsen Farzikakavand, 44), 6-Amirhossein Esmailiesfandouni, 9-Hossein Mesbahi (17-Mohammad Soleimani, 65), 10-Iman Mohebi (capt.) (12-Seyedamin Dehghantezerjani, 65) 14-Esmaeil Arablou, 15-Mohammadreza Golpaygani (11-Shahin Fasihi, 44), 16-Pouria Saeidi, 19-Amir Hassanzadeh, 20-Reza Jodeiri

Subs not used: 22-Mohammad Ghaedi, 2-Javad Gholamibaramkouhi, 3-Hohammad Dashtbozorg, 8-Milad Mohammadi, 21-Sina Saberikian

Head Coach: Alireza Basih

Stats Summary: USA / IRN            

Shots: 11 / 15
Shots on Goal: 10 / 5
Saves: 3 / 8
Corner Kicks: 2 / 7
Fouls: 5 / 7

Misconduct Summary:

USA – Raul Silva (caution)                 42
IRN - Iman Mohebi (caution)             59


Referee: Mohamad Faizudin Ismail
Assistant Referee 1: Bazrul Hissam Zainul
Assistant Referee 2: Ghafar Mohamad Zabri
Fourth Official: Mohd Afzal Hilmi

About Deaf Soccer

Deaf soccer is contested by deaf and hard-of-hearing athletes. Under international criteria, players must have a hearing loss of at least 55 decibels in their better ear. Hearing loss below this level has been shown to negatively impact hearing. All players competing in deaf matches must remove all hearing aids before playing.

For more information on the sport or to inquire about athlete eligibility, please contact U.S. Soccer's Extended National Teams Department via email at