Kim Jung-ho ties Italy 1-1 at half-time in semifinal…Lee Seung-won PK equalizer

The South Korea Under-20 men’s national soccer team finished the first half of its semifinal match against Italy at the FIFA U-20 World Cup 2023 1-1.

South Korea, coached by Kim Eun-joong, 토토사이트 held Italy 1-1 in the first half of their 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup semifinal match at the La Plata Stadium in Argentina on Monday (Sept. 9), thanks to a penalty kick goal from Lee Seung-won (Gangwon).

Korea deployed a 4-2-3-1 formation with Lee Young-joon (Gimcheon) as the upfront striker.

Bae Jun-ho (Daejeon), Lee Seung-won, and Kim Yong-hak (Portimonense) were deployed in the second line, while Kang Sang-yoon (Jeonbuk) and Park Hyun-bin (Incheon) started in the midfield.

Cho Young-kwang (Seoul), Choi Seok-hyun (Dankook University), Kim Ji-soo (Seongnam), and Choi Ye-hoon (Busan) lined up in defense, and Kim Jun-hong (Gimcheon) was the starting goalkeeper.

South Korea’s ‘forward defense, backward counterattack’ strategy helped them reach the quarterfinals despite being outplayed in terms of possession and shots on goal in the group stage, round of 16, and quarterfinals.

Against Italy, it was a similar story for the first 45 minutes.

There was one crisis in the fourth minute of the first half when Italy’s goalkeeper Kim Jun-hong failed to clear the ball from a corner kick, and in the ninth minute, Tommaso Baldanchi threatened the Korean defense when he connected with a right-footed shot from Francesco Esposito’s header.

In the end, Italy struck first in the 14th minute. Cesare Cassaday, who had scored six goals prior to this match, opened the scoring with a right-footed mid-range shot off a Riccardo Turicchia ground ball cross.

South Korea equalized on a penalty kick by Lee Seung-won in the 23rd minute.

Inside the penalty area, Bae Joon-ho was pushed down by his opponent, Mattia Chanotti, and the referee initially let the play continue, but after a video assistant referee (VAR) review, the penalty kick was awarded.

Lee stepped up to the spot and calmly slotted his right-footed shot into the left side of the net to make it 1-1.

Lee now has two goals and four assists in the tournament, equaling the offensive points (two goals, four assists) of 2019 Golden Ball winner Lee Kang-in (Mallorca).

With a win, South Korea will have the chance to reach their second consecutive final after finishing as runners-up in Poland in 2019.

In the previous quarterfinal, Uruguay defeated Israel 1-0 to advance to the final.

They were out-shot 29% to 57% (16% on target) and were outshot 3-10.