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S. Korea beats Senegal to advance to U-20 World Cup semifinals

S. Korea beats Senegal to advance to U-20 World Cup semifinals

Posted June. 10, 2019 07:41,   

Updated June. 10, 2019 07:41


South Korea has advanced to the semifinals in the FIFA U-20 World Cup for the first time in 36 years.

South Korea tied 3-3 against Senegal, a soccer powerhouse in Africa, through the overtime play in its quarterfinal match at Bielsko-Biała Stadium in Poland on Sunday, before beating the latter 3-2 in penalty shootouts. Team Korea’s youngest player Lee Kang-in (18, Valencia CF) had one goal and two assists, making contributions to the three goals the team scored in the match. Lee Ji-sol (Daejeon), and Cho Young-wook (FC Seoul) scored one goal each thanks to "kill passes" from Lee Kang-in.

South Korea has thus advanced to the semifinals for the first time in 18 events since the team led by coach Park Jong-hwan ranked fourth in the 1983 U-20 World Cup in Mexico.

South Korea will have a showdown with Ecuador, a dark horse from Latin America, at 3:30 a.m. on Wednesday. If South Korea defeats Ecuador, it will face off the winner of the semifinal between Italy and Ukraine, in the final match on Sunday next week.

South Korea had exciting matches that have had dramatic turns and twists in this year’s event. Commenting in its website about South Korea’s dramatic win through the shootouts, FIFA said that the team made a triumphant comeback through the shootouts.

Jong-Koo Yang yjongk@donga.com