‘Thanks to Japan’s near-elimination’, South Korea qualify for U-20 World Cup round of 16

For the third consecutive time, South Korea has advanced to the round of 16 at the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) U-20 World Cup. The Koreans have passed the first gateway to repeating their 2019 runner-up finish, while Japan are on the brink of group stage elimination.

Japan lost 1-0 to Israel in their third match of Group C of the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup on Monday (Aug. 28) at the Mendoza Stadium in Argentina. It was a heartbreaking defeat for the 10-man Israelis.

The loss leaves Japan with one win, two losses and three points. They slipped to third place in Group C and are no longer guaranteed a spot in the round of 16. This is their first group stage exit in 22 years since the 2001 tournament. Japan reached the round of 16 at the 2017 and 2019 tournaments after failing to qualify for four consecutive tournaments since 2009.

South Korea will advance to the round of 16 regardless of the outcome of their remaining Group 1 match. South Korea, which is second in Group F with one win and one draw, will advance even if it loses its third match on Sept. 29 against group leader Gambia (6 points) and drops to third place.

The top two teams in each of the six groups, A through F, will advance to the round of 16 unconditionally. The remaining four spots are awarded to the top four teams in each group, and South Korea must finish in the top four in each group at least ahead of Group B’s third-place Slovakia and Group C’s third-place Japan (both with at least three points), who finished the group stage.

This is the third consecutive time Korea has advanced to the round of 16, first in 2017 in South Korea and then in 2019 in Poland. They even finished runners-up in 2019, when Lee Kang-in (Mallorca) was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.먹튀검증

For Japan, it was a heartbreaking defeat. With a 1-1 record, the Japanese hung their heads in shame after conceding a late goal to Israel in stoppage time despite being outnumbered. In Group C, Colombia (7 points) and Israel (4 points) finished first and second to advance to the Round of 16. Israel reached the round of 16 in its first appearance at the tournament.

South Korea will play Gambia for the top spot in Group F at 6 a.m. on Sept. 29. At the same time, Honduras (1-1) and France (2-2) will face off.

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