04 December 2016

Korea DPR comeback seals second crown

Korea DPR came from behind to secure a 3-1 win over France in the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup final at the National Football Stadium in Port Moresby.
Grace Geyoro put France ahead early on, but Korea DPR equalised on the half-hour mark and then scored at either end of the second period to seal their first title for ten years.
An electric atmosphere was created by the capacity crowd and the players responded in kind with an up-tempo contest.
Indeed, the match proved to be a contest of fine margins at times with several last-gasp tackles and blocks amid action at both ends of the pitch.
An early goal for France perhaps helped ensure the match was an open affair. Maelle Garbino whipped in a dipping free-kick from the touchline and goalkeeper Kim Myong Sun could only fumble the ball into the path of midfielder Geyoro, who swept the opportunity home.
Buoyed by their lead, France charged forward and Clara Mateo was blocked in the nick of time by Kim Myong Sun as she bore down on goal.
Korea DPR, however, levelled on 30 minutes as the impressive Wi Jong Sim flicked the ball home at the near-post, following a fine left-sided run and cross from Kim Phyong Hwa.
Eight minutes after the break Korea DPR had a golden chance to take the lead. Kim So Hyang burst down the right following a sharp exchange of passes and her low cross was met at the far post by Kim Phyong Hwa, but the No11 somehow pushed her close-range effort wide.
The villain, however, turned heroine within a matter of just minutes. Kim Phyong Hwa headed home from an almost identical position after Wi Jong Sim deflected the ball into her path from a free-kick.
Korea DPR looked in the mood, but the match became disjointed amid a flurry of substitutions and stoppages. France could find no answers despite a late surge, with a Jon So Yon penalty in the closing stages securing victory.
It saw Korea DPR crowned champions of a FIFA women’s tournament for the second time within a matter of weeks.

13 November 2016


D defeated  1-0 on Saturday night to win the Round 2 Men’s Tournament and advance to next year’s final competition in Japan.
Jorn Andersen’s men came into the match needing a draw to advance on tiebreakers, and the opening minutes of the game seemingly reflected their desire to prevent Hong Kong’s naturalised attackers such as Alex Akande and Godfried Karikari from creating any major chances on goal.
With fouls increasing and tempers souring on the pitch, it was Jong Il Gwan who scored the lone goal of the match when he stole the ball from Hong Kong’s Leung Chun Pong and broke past the defender before sending a chip shot over the goalkeeper and into the net.
Faced with their first deficit of the tournament, Hong Kong struggled to respond. Alex, fresh off his four-goal performance against Chinese Taipei on Wednesday, found himself surrounded by multiple DPR Korea defenders whenever he entered the penalty area and was rarely able to get off a shot on goal.
The leaders’ confidence was unshaken in the second half as they continued to maintain possession, passing the ball around the middle of the pitch as they pleased. Hong Kong’s frustration showed, with defender Roberto Affonso Junior at one point getting into a verbal altercation with DPR Korea coach Andersen.
A boisterous home crowd numbering in the thousands also appeared short on patience, with three dozen fans rushing to the pitchside hoardings at one point to loudly protest the officials.
But the two goals needed by Kim Pan Gon’s men to pull off a last-minute reversal never materialized, and DPR Korea were left to celebrate at the final whistle as they clinched a second straight appearance in the regional tournament’s final competition where they will join Korea Republic, Japan, and China.


By Dan Orlowitz

Goals by So Hyun Uk and Pak Kwang Ryong were enough to see  past  on Wednesday evening in the second matchday of the  E-1 Football Championship 2017 Round 2 Men’s tournament.
Coming off their 2-0 win against Chinese Taipei in the tournament opener, the AFC Asian Cup 2015 participants were forced to make do without manager Jorn Andersen, whose ejection from that match for arguing with an official led to a touchline ban.
His men were frustrated throughout the first half by Guam, whose defending showed marked improvement from their 3-2 loss to Hong Kong. Goalkeeper Douglas Herrick was caught off his line far less frequently, and even in tight situations he was frequently rescued by defenders Alexander Lee and Brandon McDonald.
The Matao quickly earned the favor of the neutral crowd, who cheered every clearance and even booed DPR Korea’s players as they moved the ball up the pitch. Their support seemed to have little effect on Guam’s offensive production, and despite a brief spell of pressure in added time the teams would head into the halftime locker room in a nil-nil deadlock.
DPR Korea continued to pressure when play resumed in the second half, and So Hyun Uk broke the game open in the 67th minute with a tremendous volley from close range to put his team ahead 1-0.
That goal seemed to take a bit of fight out of Guam, who continued to hold strong defensively but remained unable to put any solid pressure on the DPR Korea goal despite the best efforts of Guy and Shayne Malcom’s long throw-ins which got the crowd roaring.
Striker Pak Kwang Ryong put the game away in the 87th minute with a stunning free kick from just outside the Guam penalty area, bringing his team even closer to the final tournament in Japan next December.

06 November 2016


A pair of goals bookending 90 minutes of spirited play saw  open the  E-1 Championship Men’s Round 2 with a 2-0 win over feisty  on Sunday afternoon at Hong Kong’s Mong Kok Stadium.
The two sides traded attacks early in the match, and Chinese Taipei striker Wu Chun-Ching drew a free kick deep in enemy territory in the eighth minute that was regrettably wasted.
DPRK made their own attempt on goal soon after, with Chinese Taipei goalkeeper Chiu Yu-Hung forced to fend off several efforts. Despite some big saves early on, he was helpless to stop Pak Song Chol’s 16th-minute corner kick when it went into the net.
While defender Pak Myong Song was credited with the goal, the ball appears to have potentially deflected off of Chinese Taipei defender Chen Ting-Yang.
With the neutral crowd on their side, Chinese Taipei responded with inspired stretches of play but struggled to create chances on goal, a trend that continued through the final whistle.
The second half started with cagy play, and Chinese Taipei’s Chen Po-Liang and DPRK’s Kim Kuk Bom were both shown yellow cards after a scuffle at the hour mark.
Soon after sending on Kim Ju Song to relieve Myong Cha Hyon in the 64th minute, DPRK coach Jorn Andersen was forced to make a second switch when Pak Myong Song appeared to seriously injure his right leg while chasing down a Chinese Taipei attacker.
Andersen would not see Pak’s replacement, defender Sim Hyon Jin, score the team’s second goal of the match through a smooth grounder in the 87th minute; just 10 minutes earlier the Norwegian had been ejected for arguing with the officials.
The result was disappointing for Chinese Taipei coach Kazuo Kuroda, who was promoted from his position as the head of the country’s youth program on Wednesday.

04 November 2016


The Committee also found that the DPR Korea Football Association, the DPR Korea U-16 Head Coach Yung Jong-su and the DPR Korea goalkeeper for the match Jang Paek-ho were all guilty of bringing the game into disrepute following the deliberate conceding of a goal in the 49th minute of the match and ordered:
DPR Korea Football Association:
USD20,000 fine and exclusion from AFC U-19 Championship 2018 (suspended for a probationary period of one year)
DPR Korea official Yung Jong-su:
USD5,000 fine and twelve (12)-month match suspension
DPR Korea player Jang Paek-ho:
USD1,000 fine and twelve (12)-month match suspension
Should the U-19 representative team of the DPR Korea Football Association engage in similar behaviour in the AFC U-19 Championship 2018 (Qualifiers), they will be automatically excluded from the competition.
The effect of the match suspensions also means that Yung and Jang are now suspended from the FIFA U-17 World Cup 2017.


23 October 2016

Korea DPR crowned as Japan pay the penalty

Korea DPR have won the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup for a second time, edging out Japan 5-4 on penalties after an enthralling goalless draw in Amman. Rio Kanekatsu was the only player of the ten to miss, blasting her spot-kick high and wide, which allowed Kim Pom-Ui to slot home the winner and regain a trophy the North Koreans first won eight years ago in New Zealand. 

Finals are often tense, insipid affairs but this was anything but, and the high-energy, high-quality football on show provided a fantastic advert for this tournament and for women's football. The pace was frenetic from the word go, with openings at either end and Japan in particular producing superb, flowing moves that thrilled the noisy crowd.

It was one such passage of play that gave the Little Nadeshiko their first clear chance of the match on 10 minutes, when a slick exchange down the left ended with play being switched to the lively Saori Takarada on the right. The Japan No7 met the ball first time at the edge of the box and saw her shot take a deflection off Pak Hye-Gyong, but instead of wrong-footing Ok Kum-Ju, the touch diverted the ball safely into the Korea DPR goalkeeper's arms.

Naoki Kusunose's team remained on top, though, and saw an even better opportunity go begging ten minutes later. Hana Takahashi was the guilty party, scuffing wide of the far post with the goal at her mercy after Ok had only been able to parry Fuka Nagano's 25-yard free-kick.

Korea DPR's goal was living a charmed life at this stage and they were fortunate again a few minutes later, when Hinata Miyazawa cut in from the left and rattled the face of the crossbar with a ferociously struck long-range effort.

Lady Luck was soon smiling on Japan too, though, with two major let-offs for goalkeeper Momoko Tanaka either side of half-time. First, the Japan keeper came for and missed a long ball from Pyon Un-Gyong, and emerged unscathed only when Ri Hae-Yon's glancing header drifted just wide of the right-hand post. Then, early in the second period, she dropped the ball at the feet of Sung Hyang-Sim and was saved only by a miraculous saving tackle by Reina Wakisaka, who slid to divert the resulting goal-bound shot behind for a corner.

At the other end, Ok was looking considerably more dependable for the Koreans, and she twice came to her side's rescue as the second half wore on, producing fine saves to deny Oto Kanno and Saori Takarada. The result was that penalties were required to settle the outcome and Korea DPR held their nerve, converting all five of their spot-kicks to leave poor Kanekatsu as the unfortunate villain.

Live Your Goals Player of the Match: Sung Hyang-Sim (PRK)


17 October 2016

Familiar finalists spark Asian celebrations

THE DAY REPLAYED – Before today, only two teams had reached the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup final more than once. Now that same duo can look ahead to a third after Korea DPR and Japan made light work of Venezuela and Spain respectively in the last four.

Though the Asians had begun the day as narrow favourites, few would have seen them achieving identically resounding 3-0 victories over such formidable semi-final opponents. Yet it was with a degree of ease that they reached the showpiece match of Jordan 2016, with the North Koreans silencing the erstwhile irrepressible Deyna Castellanos before the holders, even without several star players, cruised past the team they beat to take the title two years ago. 

Now another final rematch awaits as Japan and Korea DPR meet for the first time since battling it out for the Asian title last November.
ResultsVenezuela 0-3 Korea DPR
Spain 0-3 Japan