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Meet the Teams: Korea Republic (Group B)


Seoul: Regular participants in the AFC Women’s Asian Cup, Korea Republic have reached the semi-finals four times over the years, but have yet to appear in the final.

Set to take part in their 12th successive continental competition, the East Asians booked their place after edging past neighbours DPR Korea in the qualification campaign in Pyongyang. 

After running out 10-0 winners over India in their opening game, Jang Sel-gi scored what would eventually prove to be a crucial equaliser to earn a 1-1 draw with hosts DPR Korea. 

Korea Republic then saw off Hong Kong 6-0 and Uzbekistan 4-0 to finish on top of the group by virtue of goal difference to confirm their passage to Jordan.

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Four years ago, in Vietnam, Korea Republic began their campaign with a comprehensive 12-0 victory over Myanmar, before Park Eun-sun scored a hat-trick in a 4-0 win against Thailand. 

With a top-two finish and a place at the 2015 FIFA World Cup assured, the Taeguk Nangja played out a scoreless draw with China to finish on top of the group, only to lose 2-1 to Australia in the semi-final. 

China would then get their revenge in the third-place play-off following a 2-1 win but, once again, Korea Republic proved themselves as being among the top teams on the continent.

A year later in Canada, Korea Republic made their second appearance at the FIFA Women’s World Cup and Kim Sooyun provided the highlight of their tournament by scoring the decisive goal in a 2-1 victory over Spain to secure a place in the knockout rounds. 

France then brought an end to the run in the last 16 after a 3-0 victory, but the East Asians had by far bettered their previous appearance in the tournament when they suffered three defeats from three to be eliminated at the 2003 group stage. 

The side that advanced to the 2003 competition have, however, posted the country’s best performance on the continent when, earlier that year, they finished third to qualify for their first FIFA Women’s World Cup.

 

Korea Republic endured a disappointing EAFF (East Asian Football Federation) Women’s Championship at the end of 2017 when they lost all three of their games – to Japan, DPR Korea and China – to finish bottom of the standings. 

But, having already sealed their return to the continental tournament, Yoon Deok-yeo’s team will be looking to at least match their semi-final appearance in 2014 and claim one of the five spots up for grabs at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.


AFC Women’s Asian Cup Record: Third 2003; Fourth 2014, 2001, 1995; Group Stage 2010, 2008, 2006, 1999, 1997, 1994, 1991 

FIFA Women’s World Cup: Round of 16 2015; Group Stage 2003 

Head Coach: Yoon Deok-yeo (KOR) 

Key Players: Ji So-yun, Lee Min-a, Cho So-hyun


Group Stage Fixtures

April 7 vs Australia

April 10 vs Japan

April 13 vs Vietnam

Photos: FIFA.com, AFC

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