[QODLink]
Football

Brazil welcome Iran and South Korea

South Korea squeeze into Brazil World Cup by skin of its teeth as Iran finish top of Group A in Asian qualifying.

Last Modified: 18 Jun 2013 15:30
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Iran reach fourth World Cup finals while it is eight times on the bounce for South Korea [Reuters]

Iran won 1-0 at South Korea on Tuesday in a result that secured both teams a spot at next year's World Cup, but the hosts only just scraped through and had to wait until after the final whistle to know their fate.

Iran finished top of Group A in the final stage of Asian qualifying, while South Korea finished second, level on points with Uzbekistan but holding second place by virtue of goal difference. Uzbekistan came from behind to win 5-1 at home against Qatar in a simultaneous game.

The storming finish ultimately came up short, leaving the Uzbeks on a plus-five goal difference while South Korea was plus-six.

The winning goal came in the 60th minute. Kim Young-gwon failed to clear a speculative ball forward and Reza Ghoochannejad robbed him of possession, sprinted clear and sent a well-placed curling left-foot shot beyond goalkeeper Jung Sung-ryeong.

South Korea, not wanting to put their fate in the hands of the game in Uzbekistan, pressed forward strongly for the remainder of the game but could not equalise.

Kim almost made up for his mistake, but his close-range shot in the 86th minute produced a reflex save from keeper Rahman Ahmadi and Jang Hyun-soo's follow-up was also blocked.

As Iran players, coach Carlos Queiroz and officials celebrated wildly on the pitch, the South Korean squad and fans were kept in suspense while the last couple of minutes of the Uzbekistan game were played out, before they knew they were also through to next year's tournament in Brazil. 

South Korea's trip to Brazil will be their eighth-straight World Cup appearance - including one as co-host in 2002 - while Iran qualified for the World Cup for the fourth time, having missed out on South Africa 2010.

285

Source:
AP
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
Weaving and handicrafts are being re-taught to a younger generation of Iraqi Kurds, but not without challenges.
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
Featured
As nuclear age approaches eighth decade, visitors flock to historic bomb craters at New Mexico test sites.
Venezuela's president lacks the charisma and cult of personality maintained by the late Hugo Chavez.
Despite the Geneva deal, anti-government protesters in Ukraine's eastern regions don't intend to leave any time soon.
Since independence, Zimbabwe has faced food shortages, hyperinflation - and several political crises.
After a sit-in protest at Poland's parliament, lawmakers are set to raise government aid to carers of disabled youth.
join our mailing list