Kashima, Japan, July 22 (Yonhap) – South Korea lost 1-0 to New Zealand on Thursday in the first match of the men’s football tournament at the Tokyo Olympics.
Burnley striker Chris Wood scored the only goal in the second half after a long ball dominated by South Korea at the Ibaraki Kashima Stadium in Kashima, after a shot went into the foot of a defender and fell on his leg. About 110 kilometers northeast of Tokyo.
The defeat put South Korea in trouble in their bid for a second Olympic football medal. The next game for the national team is against Romania on Sunday, in the match they are to win. They face Honduras on Wednesday. The first two teams in the group advance to the quarterfinals.
In the first half South Korea dominated the rhythm of the game and did everything other than scoring, while New Zealand failed to take a single goal. Under South Korea’s initial pressure their defenders looked tense and had trouble getting the ball out of their own zone. The South Koreans entered the attacking zone, however the greatest advantage of having the ball did not lead to a goal.
However, New Zealand’s first shot, in the 70th minute, ended in the net. After Joe Bell’s shot bounced off center-back Jeong Tae-wook’s foot, the ball fell on Wood, who was alone and passed to goalkeeper Chang Bum-kyun.
South Korea continued to put pressure, but their 12-shot attempts failed.
A few hundred students from a nearby public school took part in the competition. Kashima is not in the same emergency situation that affects Tokyo and can allow visitors on a specific basis, while events in the capital take place without spectators.
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