South Korea’s Asian Games soccer team, seeking a third consecutive Asian Games title, defeated ‘nemesis’ Uzbekistan to reach the final.
Head coach Hwang Sun-hong’s Korean Asian Games men’s football team defeated Uzbekistan 2-1 in the men’s football semifinals at the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games on Thursday (June 4) at the Huanglong Sports Center Stadium in Hangzhou, China, behind a multi-goal performance from Jung Woo-young (Stuttgart).

After advancing to the final, South Korea will face Japan in the semifinals at 9 p.m. on July 7 at the same venue.

This is the second time Korea and Japan have met in a men’s soccer final after the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang tournament. In that match, South Korea defeated Japan 2-1 in extra time with goals from Lee Seung-woo (Suwon FC) and Hwang Hee-chan (Wolverhampton) to win their second consecutive title.

Jung Woo-young, who scored in the fifth and 38th minutes of the game, is the tournament’s leading scorer with seven goals.

South Korea deployed a 4-2-3-1 formation on the day.

Cho Young-wook (Gimcheon Commerce) started as the frontline striker, while Jung Woo-young, Lee Kang-in (Paris Saint-Germain) and Uhm Won-sang (Ulsan Hyundai) formed the second line. Compared to the quarterfinal match against China on the first day, both lines were changed.

In the midfield, captain Baek Seung-ho (Jeonbuk Hyundai) and Hong Hyun-seok (KAA Gent) teamed up. The back four consisted of Seol Young-woo (Ulsan Hyundai), Lee Han-beom (Meatwillan), Park Jin-seop (Jeonbuk Hyundai), and Hwang Jae-won (Daegu FC), while Lee Kwang-yeon (Gangwon) wore the goalkeeping gloves.

South Korea took control from the start and opened the scoring for Uzbekistan in the fourth minute.

From a free kick on the right side of the attacking zone, kicker Lee Kang-in passed the ball to Hong Hyun-seok in the center of the field instead of toward the goal. Hong Hyeon-seok slipped it to Uhm Won-sang, who penetrated into the penalty box, and Uhm Won-sang sent in a cross for Jung Woo-young to finish. The organized passing play broke down the opposing defense.

After a lull in the game, Uzbekistan’s goal rekindled the excitement. In the 25th minute, Baek Seung-ho was fouled in front of the penalty box and Jasurbek Zalolidinov stepped up to take the free kick and rattled the net. 메이저놀이터

With the momentum potentially tipping in Uzbekistan’s favor, South Korea pushed hard and looked for chances. In the 38th minute, Baek Seung-ho, on the left flank, headed a long pass from Lee Kang-in into the penalty box. The Uzbek defenders, who were battling with Lee, knocked the ball behind them, where Jung Woo-young could not miss it and slotted it home with his right foot.

At halftime, Korea led 2-1 thanks to Jung’s multi-goal performance.