Seoul: Korea Republic and Iraq started their AFC Asian Qualifiers – Street to Qatar campaigns with a share of the factors after a 0-0 draw of their Group A opener at Seoul World Cup Stadium on Thursday.
An unbelievable miss from Lee Jae-sung within the first half apart, possibilities had been few and much between in a match that noticed possession dominated by the East Asians, however again and again they didn’t breakdown a stalwart Iraqi rear-guard.
The hosts had begun on the entrance foot within the Korea Republic capital however confronted by a doughty defence it took till the twenty sixth minute for his or her first clear-cut alternative. It was one that ought to have resulted in a purpose.
Kim Moon-hwan’s header from Son Heung-min’s nook was blocked on the road, however the ball dropped solely so far as Lee Jae-sung, who one way or the other blasted over from contained in the six-yard field.
Iraq’s greatest probability of the half got here 5 minutes earlier than the break as Son Jun-ho denied his fellow quantity 13 Bashar Resan with a last-ditch problem after the Qatar SC man was put via on purpose.
Regardless of having had 68 % of possession within the first half, Korea Republic made a change of their midfield with the extra attack-minded Nam Tae-hee changing Son Jun-ho.
However, the hosts continued to wrestle to open up the Iraq defence and Paulo Bento introduced on new Wolves loanee Hwang Hee-chan simply earlier than the hour mark, whereas Dick Advocaat was compelled right into a change with left-back Ali Adnan limping off the sector to get replaced by Dhurgham Ismail.
And Ismail was known as upon quickly after approaching as he poked the ball away from Hwang Ui-jo because the Bordeaux man seemed to take a shot on purpose inside the realm after he was discovered by a intelligent cross from Son Heung-min.
Hwang Hee-chan then ought to have executed higher with a header from Hong Chul’s incisive cross however the substitute may solely direct it straight on the ft of Fahad Talib.
Within the last 10 minutes, Iraq introduced on their very own attacking stars, Mohanad Ali and Justin Meram, who had arrived in Korea Republic later than the primary squad, however it was to be their extra defensive teammates who would take the plaudits because the Lions of Mesopotamia noticed out the rest of the tie to safe a well-earned level in Advocaat’s debut as Iraq coach.
Korea Republic will subsequent head to Suwon World Cup Stadium on Tuesday to face Lebanon, acquainted foes from the earlier spherical of qualifying, whereas Iraq meet Islamic Republic of Iran at Doha’s Khalifa Worldwide Stadium.