AFC Asian Cup: South Korea survive Bahrain scare to secure quarterfinals berth

 

AFC Asian Cup: South Korea survive Bahrain scare to secure quarterfinals berth
South Korea's Son Heung-min and Bahrain's Abdul Wahab Ali Al Safi tussle for the ball.

Dubai - Substitute Kim Jin-su headed the winner on 107 minutes after both teams were locked 1-1 at the Rashid Stadium.

By James Jose

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Published: Wed 23 Jan 2019, 8:49 PM

It was a nice day and a nice night rather, for Bahraini soccer, but not a landmark one though.
Bahrain coach Miroslav Soukup had, on the eve of the game, spoken about it being a nice day for Bahraini soccer to go against a team like South Korea. 
And although 20th ranked Bahrain came close to springing a surprise over the fourth ranked South Korea, the latter entered the quarterfinals of the AFC Asian Cup on Tuesday night.
Substitute Kim Jin-su, who had come on for Hong Chul in the 96th minute in extra time, headed the winner on 107 minutes after both teams were locked 1-1 at the Rashid Stadium.
Kim and Korea's star player and captain Son Heung-min held up Ki Sung-yueng's jersey in celebration, with the team dedicating the goal to the Newcastle United playmaker, who returned home following a hamstring injury. 
Bahrain came out with positive energy and that showed with the Gulf country starting off brightly, and with no fear. They had a couple of decent attempts on goal in the opening 10 minutes while South Korea were left to play second fiddle.
Mohamed Jasim Marhoon unleashed a screamer on five minutes following a nice build up but his effort went wide of the right post.
Five minutes later, Sayed Redha Isa's long ranger was held on by goalkeeper Kim Seunggyu.
Meanwhile, at the other end, Son was tightly marked by the Bahraini backline, as he tried to burst away.
Bahrain were presented with an opportunity on 23 minutes when they were awarded a freekick after Jung Woo-young was brought down by Jamal Rashed Abdulrahman. But Marhoon drilled it way over the cross bar.
Meanwhile, Ali Jaafar Madan was lucky to escape with just a yellow card despite sticking his boots high into Son's face.
Son, who was tied down for a large part of the half, finally tried to make things happen with a neat through to Hwang Ui-jo but goalkeeper Sayed Shubbar Alawi rushed out and averted the danger.
Son then tried to weave his way through the left but his foray was cleared for a corner. Korea, who had slowly found a footing, scored with Son at the heart of the move. Son sent a fine cross to Lee Yong on the right and the latter teed it up nicely. And although it was cleared by Alawi before Ui-jo could get to it, Hwang Hee-chan sent home the rebound.
Korea began the second half in much better shape and almost got the second through a freekick after Jung Woo-young had almost slipped it under the wall. But it took a deflection and went for a corner.
Bahrain almost got the leveller on 69 minutes but Seunggyu dived full length at the far post to push away Rashed's left-footer.
The equaliser duly arrived on 77 minutes with Mohamed Saad Al Romaihi firing it into the top of the net following a rebound. Korea could have got the winner before the game spilled into into extra-time following a defensive blunder from Waleed. But Ui-jo shot wide of the onrushing Alawi, after Al Hayam was caught napping with the back pass.
james@khaleejtimes.com
 


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