Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


South Korea see of Greece

PORT ELIZABETH, June 12- South Korea registered the first win at the 2010 World Cup, a richly deserved 2-0 victory against Greece here Saturday to give them a live chance of achieving their ambition of a last 16 berth.South Korea, semi-finalists when they co-hosted the competition in 2002, were too quick and too smart for Otto Rehhagel’s Euro 2004 champions, who were sent packing by goals from Lee Jung Soo and captain and Manchester United midfielder Park Ji Sung.

The Manchester United star reflected: "This was my third World Cup goal and it makes me very honoured but ultimately it’s down to the team winning.

"We had a good result today, and as this is the first World Cup in Africa I’m thrilled."

Coach Huh Jung-Moo added: "The first game is always difficult, my team played well, we prepared thoroughly.

"Our main strategy was looking at Greece’s set pieces.

"If we had been a little calmer we could have perhaps scored more goals."

The Asian side grabbed this Group B fixture by the scruff of the neck as early as the seventh minute when Celtic’s Ki Sung Yueng’s freekick from beside the left corner flag skimmed over the heads of the Greek defence for Lee to volley in at the far post.

Considering it was Greece with their far superior statures that were supposed to present the setpiece threat the manner of Korea’s goal will have come as a nasty surprise.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Understandably Rehhagel did not look the happiest person among the crowd at the three-quarter full 42,000-capacity Nelson Mandela Bay stadium in this Eastern Cape port.

The Koreans proceeded to run rings round the Greeks and were close to a second goal in the 27th minute after Park Ji Sung’s superb through ball found Park Chu Young only for the Monaco striker’s shot to be deflected over the crossbar by keeper Alexandros Tzorvas.

Rehhagel made one switch at the break, replacing captain Giorgis Karagounis with defender Christos Patsatzoglou.

Seven minutes later Greece, who have never had the pleasure of celebrating a World Cup goal, fell further behind after a masterful charge by the sparky Park Ji-Sung.

The talismanic Manchester United midfielder beat off defenders Avraam Papadopoulos and Loukas Vyntra to slot the ball deftly past Tzorvas, triggering a flurry of flag waving among the Korean fans.

This Group B opener represented a personal milestone for Michael Hester, the first New Zealander to referee a match at the World Cup, and he marked the occasion by dishing out a yellow card to Greek defender Vasilis Torosidis.

Ten minutes from time something unusual took place, Greece had a shot at goal – but Korea’s veteran keeper Jung Sung Ryong lived up to his nickname of ‘Spiderhands’ to tip Theofanis Gekas’s close range attempt over the bar.

Rehhagel, making his debut as a World Cup finals manager at the age of 72, said Korea had deserved their win, before adding: "I’m always disappointed to lose a match, whether it’s in the World Cup or a cup game.

"We’ll go back to Durban now and analyse what went wrong factually and soberly and try and improve for our next gamme (against Nigeria).

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

"The Koreans played very well, they fought hard, they used their chances, we didn’t."

Group B favourites Argentina take on Nigeria later on Saturday at Ellis Park in Johannesburg.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


More on Capital Sports


NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 27 – DStv and GOtv subscribers are in for a treat of the world’s best football this week as the 2020-21...


NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 6 – Gentrix Shikangwa scored with two minutes left as Vihiga Queens sailed to the final of the CECAFA regional qualifiers...


NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 – There is light at the end of the tunnel. After failed promises over the last three years since its...


NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 13 – Kenya’s history making Daniel Adongo, the first Kenyan to play in America’s National Football League (NFL), is now living...

© 2022 Capital Digital Media. Capital Group Limited. All Rights Reserved