14 October 2012
Penalty heartbreak for DPR Korea
Baku: DPR Korea had to settle for second place at the 2012 FIFA Women's World Cup following a 7-6 penalty shootout defeat to France in Saturday's final at the Tofig Bahramov Stadium.
DPR Korea went into the match looking to claim top honours for the second time in three tournaments following their triumph in the inaugural event in 2008 as well as ensuring a hat-trick of title for Asia, with neighbours Korea Republic winning the 2010 tournament with a penalty shootout win over Japan.
However, the North Koreans found themselves a goal down 33 minutes into a first-half totally dominated by the French, with Lea Declerq slotting the ball home after latching on to a superb pass from Ghoutia Karchouni.
Having failed to muster a single shot on target in the first period DPR Korea came out strongly after the interval and got the equaliser their pressure deserved with 11 minutes remaining.
Choe Yun-gyong's long-range effort hit the woodwork but Ri Un-sim was ideally placed to convert the rebound for her tournament-topping eighth of the campaign.
The Koreans could have sealed the win in the closing stages but Choe headed narrowly wide from a corner before Ri Hyang-sim – who ultimately emerged with the Silver Ball award for the tournament's second best player behind France's Griedge Mbock Bathy – also missed from close range sending the match into a shootout, which was won by France as Ri Un-yong missed her spotkick.
It was the first time a team from Europe had won the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup but still another impressive campaign for Asia, with the Fair Play award going to Japan, whose midfielder Yui Hasegawa picked up the Bronze Ball award as the competition's third best player.
source : afc.com