Energetic South Korea upset 2004 European champions Greece 2-0 in their 2010 FIFA World Cup Group B match here on Saturday, the first victors of the tournament.
Only seven minutes into the game, Lee Jung Soo opened the scoring for South Korea when the central defender flicked on and tapped in at the back post after a free-kick from Ki Sung-yong found him.
The Greeks were outplayed and outrun for most of the game at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium and were made to pay for their defensive errors, producing exactly the same game as they had done in the friendlies before the World Cup.
In the 52nd minute, a poor cross from Greece at the back gifted Manchester United star winger Park Ji Sung a thrusting solo run. Park dribbled past two defenders straight into the box and sealed the win with a powerful shot.
Park, 29, who started his career as a defensive midfielder, has won three English Premier League champions and a UEFA Champions League title.
The Asian soccer power almost widened their lead on 27 minutes when Park split the Greek defence with a pinpoint pass for forward Park Chu Young who dashed into the box but his close range shot was parried by keeper Alexandros Tzorvas.
Greece: Alexandros Tzorvas, Giourkas Seitaridis, Vassilis Torosidis, Loukas Vyntra, Avraam Papadopoulos, Kostas Katsouranis, Alexandros Tziolis, Giorgos Karagounis, Angelos Charisteas, Fanis Gekas, Giorgos Samaras.
South Korea: Jung Sung-Ryong, Cho Yong-Hyung, Cha Du-Ri, Lee Jung-Soo, Lee Young-Pyo, Park Ji-Sung, Kim Jung-Woo, Ki Jong-Sung, Lee Chung-Yong, Yeom Ki-Hun, Park Chu-Young.
ighlights of the first Group B match in the 2010 World Cup finals which saw South Korea defeat Greece 2-0 at the Nelson Mandela Bay stadium in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
7 – GOAL – SOUTH KOREA 1 GREECE 0 – Lee Jung-soo gives South Korea an early lead, volleying home from one metre out from a free kick taken near the corner flag by Ki Sung-yong.
15 – South Korea appeal for penalty as Lee Chung-young falls to the ground in the penalty box as he prepares to shoot under pressure from a challenge from Greece defender Vassilis Torosidis. Referee Michael Hester waves play on.
28 – South Korea nearly extend their lead with a great through ball by Park Ji-sung putting Park Chu-young clean through but Greece keeper Alexandros Tzorvas makes a fine save with an outstretched leg.
44 – Greece mounts a rare attack but Giorgos Samaras at full stretch fails to connect with a pass from Torosidis and the balls run harmlessly through to South Korea keeper Lee Woon-jae.
45 – HALFTIME – Referee Hester blows for half time with little added time. South Korea have been dominant and look good value for their lead.
46 – SUBSTITUTION – Greece take off captain Giorgos Karagounis and bring on Christos Patsatzoglou.
52 – GOAL – SOUTH KOREA 2 GREECE 0 – Park Ji-sung capitalises on a defensive mistake by Greece defender Loukas Vyntra, seizing possession about 10 metres from goal and surging clear before calmly slotting the ball past keeper Tzorvas to extend South Korea’s lead.
56 – YELLOW CARD – Torosidis becomes the first player to be booked in the match after a rash tackle.
59 – SUBSTITUTION – Greece make a second change, bringing on Dimitris Salpingidis to replace Samaras.
61 – SUBSTITUTION – Greece make their final change with Pantelis Kapetanos replacing Haristeas.
67 – Greece’s Fanis Gekas controls the ball with his chest in the South Korea penalty box but a spectacular overhead shot goes sailing over the bar.
74 – SUBSTITUTION – South Korea appear to be tiring with Greece beginning to create more chances and bring on Kim Nam-il to replace Ki Sung-yong.
78 – Greece pouring forward as they try to get back into the game and Gekas has shot blocked by Lee Young-pyo during a goalmouth scramble.
81 – Lee Woon-jae pulls off a fine save from a shot from Greece’s Gekas as the pressure on South Korea mounts.
87 – SUBSTITUTION – South Korea make a second change with Lee Seung-ryul replacing Park Chu-young
90 – SUBSTITUTION – South Korea make their final change as the game winds down with Kim Jae-sung replacing Lee Chung-yong.
90+2 – FULL TIME – The final whistle sounds as South Korea record the first win of the 2010 World Cup finals.