KOREA FORTUNATE TO GRAB POINT AFTER SUBPAR PERFORMANCE VS. JORDAN

Lee Kang-in of Korea, center, battles Salem Al-Ajalin of Jordan for the ball during the teams' Group E match at the Asian Football Confederation Asian Cup at Al Thumama Stadium in Doha, Jan. 20. Yonhap

It took a late equalizer by their opponent for Korea to come away with a point at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup in Qatar on Saturday — a lucky point for a team that didn’t really deserve it.Korea, ranked 23rd, eked out a 2-2 draw against world No. 87 Jordan in their second group stage match at Al Thumama Stadium in Doha. The Taegeuk Warriors were unable to stay in front after captain Son Heung-min converted his own penalty in the ninth minute. An own goal by midfielder Park Yong-woo in the 37th minute leveled the score, with Park getting in front of Yazan Al-Arab to try to clear away a corner, only to head the ball into his own net.

Yazan Al-Naimat’s right-footed shot gave Jordan a 2-1 lead during first-half stoppage time. As fate would have it, it was Al-Arab’s own goal in the early moments of second-half stoppage time that made the score 2-2.Jordan stayed in first place in Group E with four points. Korea have the same point total but trail them in goal difference, +4 to +2.Son said after the match his team was “fortunate” to come away with the draw. Indeed, Korea were badly outplayed for most of the first half, as their defense was often left scrambling and looking flustered against physical and speedy opposing attackers. Korea regained their edge in ball possession in the second half but weren’t nearly clinical enough in the box.

Starting forward Cho Gue-sung frittered away some good looks, none more frustrating than the volley he bounced over the net soon after Al-Naimat’s go-ahead goal late in the first half.And after grabbing a brace to key Korea’s 3-1 win over Bahrain on Monday, Lee Kang-in wasn’t nearly as sharp or dynamic against Jordan. Statistically, he was the best dribbler of the tournament for Matchday One, but he could barely keep the ball at his feet for most of Saturday. His shots off some promising opportunities ended up going right to goalkeeper Yazeed AbulailaSon had a bit of personal redemption with his successful penalty, after he looked 온라인카지노 off-kilter against Bahrain. But Son failed to do much else the rest of the match.

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