Uruguay vs South Korea: both teams play out to goalless draw after wasted opportunities


Uruguay and South Korea played out to a 0-0 in their opening match of the World Cup in Qatar.

Both teams lined-up with some of their star names on show, with veteran Luis Suarez leading the way for Uruguay while Son Heung-min played in South Korea’s forward line. 

Son, 30, was wearing a face mask throughout the match due to the injury he sustained in Tottenham’s UEFA Champions League match against Marseille. 

Both sides had great opportunities to go into the lead at half-time.

South Korea’s Hwang Ui-jo was free in the 18-yard box when a low cross found him unmarked. However, the 30-year-old hit the ball high over the bar from close range and wasted his side’s best chance. 

For Uruguay, Facundo Pellistri whipped in a wonderful corner that found Diego Godin, who jumped clear of his marker to get his head on the ball, only to smash the left-hand post. 

In the second half, South Korea looked threatening on the counter-attack and were more energetic than their opponents, but failed to capitalise on their organised performance. 

Uruguay came close to snatching it at the end of the game after Federico Valverde smacked the outside of the post with a 30-yard effort. 

Overall, Uruguay will feel that they need to improve before their next match in Group H against Portugal, while South Korea will be encouraged by their performance. 

The key moment of Uruguay vs South Korea

Although it was a close call, perhaps the biggest moment of the game came from South Korea’s Hwang Ui-jo in the first half. 

It was the most amount of space a South Korea forward had in the game when he found himself eight yards out from the opposition goal. 

The ball delivered to him was inch perfect with pace and whip, but Ui-jo unfortunately skied the ball high, wide and over the crossbar. 

As Canada found out late on Wednesday evening, you cannot waste your opportunities at a World Cup. It’s a learning experience that South Korea will have to quickly get over. 

Player of the match – Jin-su Kim 

Jin-su Kim was a key player for South Korea (Photo: Getty Images)

Despite being a goalless draw, there were plenty of good performances from individuals and one player who particularly stood out was South Korea left-back Jin-su Kim. 

The 30-year-old veteran defender was impressive both offensively and defensively during the game.

Overall, he made three tackles, one clearance, won five ground duels, four aerial duels and completed three crosses in the match. 

Uruguay vs South Korea key statistic

South Korea were the better side in the first half and had more of the ball – 50.3 per cent to be exact. 

That was the first time South Korea had the better of the possession in a first-half of a World Cup game.

What does it mean?

The result means both sides are still in with a shot in qualifying for the knockout stages of the tournament, but need to avoid defeat against either Portugal or Ghana.

South Korea will take confidence from their performance, while Uruguay will need to improve in front of goal.

What next?

Uruguay will play Portugal in their next Group H match on Monday, November 28, while South Korea will play Ghana on the same day.



South Korea team guide: Rock solid defence can show it’s not all about Son



Uruguay team guide: Mind games, Darwin Nunez and hopes for a third trophy

(Photo: Getty Images)


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