Iran Goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand's Life Story Is The Most Inspirational Story You'll Ever Read
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Iran goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand is one of only a few people in this world that can say: "I've saved a penalty from Cristiano Ronaldo."
In fact, he is the first goalkeeper to save a World Cup penalty from a Portuguese player in the tournament's history.
But the 25-year-old's journey to these finals in Russia are much more of an achievement than tonight's spot-kick heroics.
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
Beiranvand ran away from home when he was younger to fulfil his dreams of becoming a professional footballer and because he moved away, he was homeless for some time.
He proceeded to work in a dress factory, a car wash and as a street cleaner before making it, according to The Guardian.
"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," he said.
"They had thought I was a beggar! Well, I had a delicious breakfast for the first time in a long while."
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. :open_hands: pic.twitter.com/BzSDCXSQ8D
- Squawka Football (@Squawka) June 25, 2018
Alireza Beiranvand saves Ronaldo's penalty #IRNPOR #WorldCup pic.twitter.com/QgQHJl5jEa
- Football 24/7 (@foetball247) June 25, 2018
After a huge amount of hard work and dedication, Beiranvand would become a professional footballer and realise his dream of playing at a World Cup.
Tonight he saved a penalty against Cristiano Ronaldo on the biggest stage of them all.
What a journey it has been for the 25-year-old. Never, ever give up.