The South Korean women’s soccer team’s dreams of reaching their first ever Olympic Games have come to an end.
Head coach Colleen Bell’s women’s team drew 1-1 with China in their final Group B match at the Paris 2024 Olympic Women’s Football Second Qualifying Round on Monday at the Xiamen Egrat Stadium in Fujian Province, China.
With the result, South Korea improves to 1-2-2 (5 points) and finishes second in the group behind North Korea (2-1-1 and 7 points). They also failed to qualify for the knockout stages, falling behind Group C winner Uzbekistan (6 points) on goal difference.
There are only two spots up for grabs in Asia for the Paris Olympics. In the second round of the 12-team qualifiers, the best three teams from each group will advance to the tournament. A home-and-home tournament next February will then determine Asia’s slot.
With South Korea eliminated, North Korea, Japan, Australia, and Uzbekistan will play in the playoffs.
Needing a win to qualify for the final round, South Korea tightened up their defense and went for the kill with a quick counterattack.
The Chinese attack, backed by a one-sided cheer from the home fans, struggled, but South Korea managed to hold on with Lee Young-joo and Kim Hye-ri at the center.
There was a crisis. In the 20th minute, South Korea conceded a goal, but the goal was disallowed due to an offside call.
South Korea then tried to counterattack, but were unable to capitalize. Just before the end of the first half, Casey Eugene Fair broke down the right flank and sent a ball into the middle that Ji So-yeon caught and hit into the corner, but the ball hit the post.
South Korea pushed up the line at the start of the second half and increased their offense, eventually taking the lead in the 17th minute.
On a free kick, defender Shim Seo-yeon, who was involved in the attack, leapt high to head in Ji So-yeon’s cross, rattling the Chinese goal.
Korea’s lead was short-lived, however. Korea conceded a header from Wang Shanshan in the 32nd minute on a free kick awarded after a 토토사이트 foul by Lee Young-joo.
From there, South Korea and China traded attacks in search of the winner, but neither team could find the back of the net in the closing stages and the match ended in a draw.
The South Korean team, which failed to qualify for the Olympics, will arrive at Incheon International Airport at 1:30 p.m. on Feb. 2.