Kim Jong-il Won’t Mind Too Much!

by Michael Somerville

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

North Korea 1
Brazil 2

For 55 minutes the fairytale was alive. Korea battled with determination and team spirit but they couldn’t halt the sea of yellow.

The yellow party arrived in South Africa today, and it was a much more two sided game that the Brazilians would have expected. Surely one of the easiest (on paper) World Cup games ever was difficult for the number 1 team in the world. Ellis Park was left captivated after a hypnotic first half in which Brazil dominated proceedings, but couldn’t break the North Koreans down. Perhaps North Korea had been watching DVD’s of Fulham’s route to the Europa League final, in which organisation and hard work almost equalled glory.

Of course 1996 was on their mind, in which they made it to the semi – finals. If they could repeat that again in this years group of death (Brazil, Portugal, Ivory Coast) it would have been frankly astonishing.

City outcast Robinho was showing off with some very neat tricks but there was no end product in the first half. Even hot shot Luis Fabiano, could not find a way through. Brazil were missing their spark.

Brazil saw plenty of the ball in the first half, but Korea were tremendously strong in the tackle, were commanding aerially at the back and looked threatening when they did get forward. Striker Jong Tae- se is targeting a goal every game at this World Cup, and he created some good space for himself before striking straight at Julio Cesar after 13 mins.

The second half predictably continued with more Brazilian pressure at Michel Bastos just struck wide from a free kick. North Korea were covering each other brilliantly against every Brazil attack, but just before the hour mark, Maicon produced a pulsating run into the penalty area. His strike completly bamboozled the North Korean goalkeeper Myong-Guk Ri as it swerved quite magnifcantly in the air. A case of the new Jabulani balls or Brazilan genius?

Luis Fabiano should have added a second after an hour as he chested down a Robinho pass, but blasted over the bar.

The second goal came after an inch perfect through ball from Robinho. Elano latched onto it with ease and sent the ball effortlessly into the bottom left hand corner. It was a wonderful goal. Total Football!

North Korea weren’t finished yet- Yum- Nang-ji finished excellently after a knock down and the midfielder ran through unopposed to nestle the ball into the net. A great goal by the North Koreans epitomised their ‘never say die’ team spirit.

Portugla and Ivory coast had better watch out.

01 Julio Cesar
02 Maicon
03 Lucio (C)
04 Juan
06 Michel Bastos
05 Felipe Melo
07 Elano
08 Silva
10 Kaka
09 Luis Fabiano
11 Robinho

North Korea
01 Myong-Guk Ri
02 Jong-Hyok Cha
03 Jun-Il Ri
05 Kwang-Chon Ri
13 Chol-Jin Pak
04 Nam-C Pak
08 Yun-Nam Ji
11 In-Guk Mun
17 Yong-Hak Ahn
09 Tae-Se Jong
10 Yong-Jo Hong (C)

Follow my reports where I’ll be blogging on every World Cup match in South Africa with refreshing reactions and insight.

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