South Korea suffer confidence-jolting loss to Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Jeonju (South Korea), June 2 (IANS) South Korea’s national side lost 1-3 to Bosnia and Herzegovina in a pre-World Cup friendly, a stinging defeat that comes less than two weeks before the start of the latest edition of football’s premier event.

The Koreans, who have been drawn into a group that features powerhouse Germany and another squad, Sweden, that qualified out of the daunting UEFA qualification zone, will need to do some soul-searching after a bad loss to a middling European side that did not qualify for Russia, reports EFE news agency.

Winger Edin Visca accounted for all three of Bosnia’s goals here on Friday, the first of which came in the 28th minute on a shot from the right side of the penalty box off a pass from defender Eldar Civic.

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South Korea had done little offensively to that point, but midfielder Lee Jae-sung gave his team a boost — and sent the crowd at the Jeonju World Cup Stadium into a frenzy — two minutes later when he lofted a left-footed shot past goalkeeper Ibrahim Sehic.

It appeared the match would be tied 1-1 at the intermission, but Visca struck again in first-half injury time when he received a long-range pass from midfielder Haris Duljevic and slotted the ball home past South Korean goalkeeper Kim Seung-gyu in a one-on-one opportunity.

Bosnia mainly looked for chances on the counter-attack in the second half against a South Korean side that did little with its ball possession, and that strategy paid off in the 79th minute when Visca received a pass from forward Riad Bajic and volleyed it past Kim.

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South Korea furiously sought to pull off a comeback in the final minutes, a go-for-broke tactic that only served to leave it vulnerable to multiple attacking forays by Bosnia.

The defeat was the third international loss in four games for the Asian nation, which also dropped a pair of friendlies in March to Northern Ireland and Poland.

Its lone bright spot over the past 10 weeks came in a 2-0 victory over Honduras in Daegu on Monday.

South Korea has been drawn into Group F of the World Cup and will take on Sweden on June 18, Mexico on June 23 and Germany on June 27.

–IANS

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