Nigeria crash, South Korea through
Posted: 22 June 2010 Time: 22:34
Nigeria and South Korea drew 2-2 which means Nigeria are out of the tournament while the Koreans match on.
The Nigeria goals were scored by Kalu Uche and Yakubu Aiyegbeni and for Korea, the goals came from Jung Soo Lee and Chu Young Park.
Kalu Uche then broke the deadlock in an emphatic fashion after 12 minutes. Odiah easily passed two Koreans on the right flank, and he should have been dispossessed, before he swung the ball in for a lurking Uche, who cut infront of his man and poked the ball into the net.
South Korea got their chance to reply when Yeom Ki-Hun stood over a free-kick in a dangerous area on the right. It was a good delivery but, lacking in height, the ball went back out to safety with easy Uche soon reared his head again at the other end, but opting to shoot instead of crossing proved a poor idea as his shot went well over the bar.
Uche hit the post on 35 minutes. A devilish strike from range really rattled the woodwork, leaving Jung Sung-Ryong stranded, but no one was there to nudge the rebound into the empty net for the African side.
Chinedu Obasi was the first person to receive a yellow after some dangerous play down the left flank. Ki Sung-Yong swung in the free-kick and Lee Jung-Soo was able to run in unmarked at the back post to nod the ball in to bring the scores back to level pegging. The referee called it after 2 minutes of added time and the teams went in with a goal each.
Danny Shittu conceded a foul outside of his own box in a dangerous area for the Asians on the pitch - and dangerous it was. Park Chu-Young stood over the ball and bent it expertly around the wall, beating a wrong-footed Enyeama in the process. It was a dream start to the second half for South Korea as they took the lead for the first time in the game.
We had the miss of the World Cup so far. Ayila made a wonderful run down the left before squaring the ball into an unmarked Yakubu who was standing in front of an open goal. No easier chance could have been presented to the Yak, but he somehow managed to put his effort wide from 6-yards. It was truly a sight to behold.
However, it wasn't long before Yakubu had a chance to make up for his mistake, and South Korea Huh Jung-Moo would begin to regret ever sending on Kim Nam-Il. The overexcited defensive midfielder would find himself in the book after scything down Obasi in the box. The Nigerian crowd fell silent as Yakubu was designated the task of the taking the penalty, but the big striker calmly slotted past Jung Sung-Ryong to bring the scores level once again.
Park Ji-Sung wrong-footed Echiejile before cutting inside and shooting, but his powerful shot shook the outside of the net. Soon after, Obafemi Martins was played onside by Chinedu Obasi with only the 'keeper to beat. Once again though, the Nigerians lacked teeth as his deft chip rolled past the post with Jung Sung-Ryong sprawled outside his 6-yard box.
A chance fell to Martins as a cross came in from the right. The Wolfsburg striker failed to control the lofty ball properly s it neared the ground, and once more the Super Eagles were left ruing wasted opportunities due to a lack of sharpness at the front.
Obinna then struck twice in as many minutes in a last-gasp attempt to snatch the win for the Africans. He first made space before shooting just inside the area and seeing his attempt go just wide. He struck again soon after only to see his more powerful long-range shot suffer the same fate, which really seemed to sum up Nigeria's entire attack line for the duration.
With Argentina winning 2-0 against Greece it would have taken just one more goal from the Nigerians to seal a place in the last 16. It was not to be though as the referee called it after 93 minutes, allowing the South Koreans safe passage to the next stage with the Albiceleste, while the Super Eagles join must the Greeks on the plane home.