Son Heung-min and Luis Suarez mired in Uruguay-Korea World Cup impasse

Son Heung-min and Luis Suarez mired in Uruguay-Korea World Cup impasse


The return of Son Heung-min failed to inspire South Korea as the Tigers of Asia opened their World Cup Group H campaign with a 0-0 draw against Uruguay in Qatar on Thursday. Uruguay captain Diego Godin and Real Madrid midfielder Federico Valverde came closest to breaking the deadlock, hitting the woodwork in each half, while Hwang Ui-jo wasted Korea’s best chance, with only the goalkeeper 10 yards out. hit a shot from It was a game of few chances as neither Son on one side nor Uruguay’s formidable strikers Luis Suárez, Darwin Núñez and Edinson Cavani could find clear openings.

With matches against Ghana and group favorites Portugal coming up, both sides seemed intent on not giving up, instead pushing for victory at the Education City Stadium in Doha. Both the coaches were satisfied with the point.

“It was a very good match from our side, we were better in the first half, we had many moments where we controlled the match,” said Korea’s Portuguese coach Paulo Bento.

We weren’t at our best after half time, we suffered a bit because they are high quality players but we played well in that situation and conceded very little.

Diego Alonso of Uruguay said: “It was a good game, a tight game with two competitive nations.”

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“But it was good that we were able to adjust afterwards and we dominated the second half.”

Son’s struggle ‘natural’

The early part of the match settled into a predictable pattern as Korea made a quick start and Uruguay held tight, withstanding the pressure without giving anything away. Notably, the South Americans kept Korean Danger Man Son quiet.

Uruguay created the first clear chance as two raking crossfield balls from centre-back José María Jiménez picked out runners coming in at an angle.

Valverde crashed the first over the bar, while Nuñez failed to make proper contact on the second from only eight yards out with the goal at his mercy. Just before the hour mark, Correa should have been in front after breaking open the Uruguayan defence, but unmarked from 10 yards out, Hwang fired the ball over the bar. Godin then came closest to scoring when he hit the inside of the post with a header from Valverde’s outswinging corner.

Neither side could bring their game-changer into the match, with Son clearly not fully fit, playing his first match since surgery on a broken bone around his eye earlier in the month against Marseille in the Champions League. Was playing.

Bento said of Son’s subdued performance, “He was inactive for a long time, he could only re-establish our team in the last few days.” “It is natural that after an injury … it will take some time for him to be ready again.”

On the other hand, Suárez, Uruguay’s all-time record goalscorer, was a peripheral figure and was replaced midway through the second period by fellow veteran Cavani.

Korea quickly looked to settle for a point, but coach Paulo Bento brought on fan-favourite Lee Kang-in to provide some energy and leap.

Uruguay, however, remained the more dangerous side and Cavani tripped up Nunez who fired just wide. Korean hearts were in their mouths when Valverde crashed a long-range strike before Son fired a shot at the other end as both sides had chances to win it in injury time.

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Indian Lekhak

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