World Cup 2014 – Group H: Match Report Russia 1 – 1 South Korea

20 Jun

Pic 1Date: Tuesday, June 17 2014
Place: Arena Patanal in Cuiaba
Referee: Nestor Pitana (ARG)
Attendance: 37,600

Line ups:

Russia

Igor Akinfeev
Andrey Eshchenko
Sergei Ignashevich
Vasili Berezutski , captain
Dmitri Kombarov
Viktor Fayzulin
Denis Glushakov, substitute Igor Denisov in 72 min
Yuri Zhirkov, substitute Alexander Kerzhakov in 71 min
Alexander Samedov
Alexander Kokorin
Oleg Shatov, Yellow card in 49 min, substitute Alan Dzagoev in 59 min

South Korea

Jung Sung –Ryung
Lee Yong
Kim Young-Gwon
Hong Jeong-ho, substitute Hwang Seok-ho in 76 minute
Han Kook-young
Lee Chung-yong
Ki Sung-yeung, yellow card in 30 minute
Koo Ja-Cheol (captain), yellow card in 90 minute
Park, Chu-young, substitute Lee Kuen-ho in 56 minute
Son Heung-min, yellow card in 13 minute, substitute Kim Bo-Kyung in 84 minute

Pic 2 South Korean fansCommentators called this match a slow burn but that would be a very positive spin on this second match for Group H. Russia and South Korea met at the Arena Patanal on a rainy Tuesday night but neither team showed the urgency that either team would need to advance or for the game to show any intensity that has been part of the early days of this World Cup.

After the first ten minutes with some tentative shots by both sides, South Korea showed the better possession but attacks fell apart in the final third of the pitch. This, however, proved to be the theme throughout the first half where both teams had some good runs but shots were either easily deflected or were way off target. Son Heung-min, of Beyer Leverkusen fame, had the best opportunity of the half in the 38th minute but when it came time to pull the trigger, he blasted the ball into space. Sloppy fouls and poor footing were commonplace and neither team seemed interested in risking anything for a goal.

However, there were some positives, especially in the areas of defense. South Korean goalie Jung was not exactly busy in goal but had some strong saves throughout the match. And on the Russian side, Coach Fabio Capello would be pleased with the easy partnership of the Russian back line. The strength of Ignashevich and Beretzutski, clearly solidified by their teamwork at CSKA Moscow, allowed Eshchenko a lot of freedom to run up the flank. He made a lot of deep runs and allowed some space for the attack. However, the strikers could not capitalize on his strength on the field.

The mystery of the Russian captainship was solved with this match, as Vasili Beretzutski was named the Skipper. However, coach Capello was less than complementary when he said his reasons were Beretzutski’s ability to speak English and thus communicate with the referee. No love from Don Capello!

The second half started with some urgency from the Russians. I’m sure the half time talk by Coach Capello must have been a beaut! Within seconds, Fayzulin had a great shot but Jung was able to tip it over the bar. The ensuing corner was perfect for Beretzutski but he headed into the side netting.

From the start of the second half, there was the foreshadowing of doom as Russian keeper Igor Akinfeev looked more and more uncomfortable in goal. Shots were parried away when a grab would have been safer or even worse, shots straight to the keeper would bounce off his hands and need two attempts to grab. It was only a matter of time before this would cost the Russians. And it did.

In the 68th minute, Akinfeev fumbled a shot pretty clear at him and the ball went off the tip of his fingers behind him into goal. The goal was awarded to South Korean Lee Kyun-ho, another substitute goal of the day but it was as close to an own goal by the keeper as you can get.
The two goals were the key that energized the crowd who became extremely loud. This could only help the teams, though the pace throughout the last twenty minutes was frenetic and sloppy.

The very sloppy and sluggish performance by both teams will surely hearten both Belgium and Algeria as neither team tonight seemed in full control. Algeria’s strong defensive shape and unity on the field will surely challenge both Russia and South Korea and while Algeria is currently at the bottom of the group, I will be shocked if they stay that way. Belgium should be careful with Russia, however, as Don Capello will surely put the fear of God (or at least of Capello) into the hearts and minds of his players. South Korea does have talent but they will have a tough time making it through the strong and united defense that Algeria showed today. Next Sunday should be a decisive day for Group H. Stay Tuned!!

Pic 3
Luckily for Russia, Kerzhakov came in for Zhirkov right after the goal and this substitution proved worthy to save Russian blushes. Within minutes of coming on, Kerzhakov was able to take complete advantage of chaos in front of the South Korean goal and put it right into the net.


Pic 4

The two goals were the key that energized the crowd who became extremely loud. This could only help the teams, though the pace throughout the last twenty minutes was frenetic and sloppy.

The very sloppy and sluggish performance by both teams will surely hearten both Belgium and Algeria as neither team tonight seemed in full control. Algeria’s strong defensive shape and unity on the field will surely challenge both Russia and South Korea and while Algeria is currently at the bottom of the group, I will be shocked if they stay that way. Belgium should be careful with Russia, however, as Don Capello will surely put the fear of God (or at least of Capello) into the hearts and minds of his players. South Korea does have talent but they will have a tough time making it through the strong and united defense that Algeria showed today. Next Sunday should be a decisive day for Group H. Stay Tuned!!

– ForzaSusan

One Response to “World Cup 2014 – Group H: Match Report Russia 1 – 1 South Korea”

  1. hopechaser June 21, 2014 at 11:18 am #

    I didn’t find this game as bad as many others. Capello is a character and he has done well with the Russian team. And South Korea are pretty good squad; just need more experience.

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