South Korea to 8vos. with victory against Portugal

South Korea came back and beat Portugal 2-1 this Friday to reach the round of 16 of the World Cup in Qatar, accompanying the Portuguese, who despite the defeat qualified as leaders of group H.

Portugal opened the scoring with a goal from Ricardo Horta (6), but Kim Young-Gwon equalized (27) and Hwang Hee-chan made it 2-1 (90+1), which gave the South Koreans the classification, ahead of the Uruguayans, who beat Ghana 2-0 in the other match of the key, leaving both eliminated.

"We are upset. We are qualified but we wanted to win and play better to gain more confidence"said the Portuguese coach, Fernando Santos.

"I trust my team a lot, but it’s a warning" Looking forward, he added.

The Portuguese will face Switzerland, second place in group G, in the round of 16, after beating Serbia 3-2 this Friday, while South Korea will play against Brazil, leader of that group, despite losing 1-0 with Cameroon in the latter day of the group round.

"It’s a deserved result for everything we’ve done, not only during this game but in the three group games"said Sergio Costa, assistant to Korea coach Paulo Bento, suspended this Friday after seeing a red card against Ghana.

South Korea arrived at the Education City stadium in Doha forced to win to advance to the round of 16 in the World Cup, something that had not been achieved since South Africa-2010.

On that occasion, he fell in the first round of direct elimination with Uruguay, for which he took revenge this Friday by snatching away qualification for the next phase of the World Cup in Qatar.

Horta strikes first
Portugal took the initiative in the match against a South Korea that was waiting and trying to surprise the counterattack.

The Portuguese, who only needed one point to secure their lead, soon took the lead after Ricardo Horta finished off a cross from the right by Diogo Dalot in the box after a great run down the flank (6).

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Owner of the ball, Portugal was able to score the second in a cross into the area that Kim Young-gwon cleared before the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo (23).

The South Korean central defender then appeared in the opposite area when, from a corner kick, no one managed to clear and the ball remained dead in the mouth of the goal for Young-gwon to finish off into the back of the Portuguese nets (27).

The equalizer encouraged the South Koreans who began to stretch in search of the second.

Before the break, Cristiano Ronaldo had one of the best chances when he headed wide in front of the goal, the South Korean goalkeeper repelling a shot from Vitinha (42).

The Portuguese star barely had any influence on his team’s game this Friday, very isolated at the front, until he was replaced by Andre Silva (65).

providential goal
After the break, the game continued in the same pattern, with an Asian team waiting in their field to try to surprise with speed or set pieces.

With the clock ticking down and nothing to lose, South Korea went on the attack in the final 20 minutes, turning the game into an exchange of blows in which Korea found the goal.

A run around the field by Heung-min ended with a pass from the South Korean star to his teammate Hee-chan, who had come on for Kang In-Lee (81).

Hee-chan won the one-on-one with goalkeeper Diogo Costa to give victory and classification to South Korea (90+1).

After the end of the match, the South Koreans stayed on the field following the Celeste game with mobile phones, since a third goal would have given the Uruguayans the classification.

The end of the match between the Uruguayans and the Ghanaians was greeted with an immense shout of joy by the Asian players, who were back in the round of 16 twelve years later.

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