Netherlands 7 vs. 0 South Korea

22.07.2018

Pool A

5.00pm push back

Game start and there is an immediate collision between Korea’s captain, Youngran Kim and Holland’s number 12 Lidewij Welten. The player in orange gets up, takes the self pass quickly, driving into the circle and aims a cross-come-shot at the far post, which is tapped in by her team mate Frederique Matla. 1 – 0 to the world number 1 team and we’ve barely even started. It’astest goal in the tournament so far…

Korea go on the attack for a goal back, but are repelled fairly easily. In the fourth minute, the Dutch are running forward with ease. Matla is very high and receives the ball, but just misses the goal with her shot. Another drive forward and the ball is played into the circle again. Welten finds space, shots, scores. The Netherlands are two goals up and we haven’t played five minutes yet. Korea are struggling to deal with their opponent’s attacking movement, this could be a goal fest.

South Korea are moving the ball around between their midfield and back line, probing, searching for a way forward, but are finding it difficult to get past the half way line. A long ball from their own half finds Yuri Lee upfront, on the edge of the circle, but there is a foul and the Dutch get the free hit. Eunji Cho plays another long ball to Seul Ki Cheon at centre forward, but the ball is played too far away from the player to be trapped and it roles off the pitch. Holland work an attack up the pitch from the hit out, move down the right. Kitty van Male finds herself able to turn at the right of the circle, drives into the area and slots it home and it’s all to easy.

Dutch captain Carlien Dirkse van den Heuvel wins the ball on the top of the Korean circle, drives to the left hand baseline and fizzles the ball across the face of the goal. Matla scores another goal with a tap in at the far post. At this point the Koreans change their keeper, number 31 Hyeon A Hwang coming on for Sora Bae.

Holland are really defending well, moving together to stop passes coming through. The players from top to bottom seem to be very well organised, moving together to prevent any ball to be played forward and denying space for opposition attackers to pass the ball into. They win the ball back, attack down the right wing, hit the baseline and drag it back for Dirkse van den Heuvel. She shots, the keeper saves, but kicks it straight to a dutch forward, who gets another shot off, forces the goalie to plank and number Kelly Jonker scores from this rebound at close range. At the end of the first quarter and it’s five goals to nothing.

Starting the second period on the front foot and Lidewij Welten is carrying on her good form from earlier on. She runs the length of the pitch, drives into the circle, committing the Korean defender, passes to Laurien Leurink, who slots home for a sixth goal. Four minutes in to the period, Korea finally get into the dutch defensive quarter, but a badly hit pass bounces up and gives holland a free hit. They promptly move down the other end and get a long corner for themselves.

Sun ji Choi fouls a dutch player on the 23 metre line, but the dutch are unable to work it into an attacking chance this time. If I was to pick the best player for the South Koreans at this point, it would probably be their captain Youngran Kim. She looks fairly comfortable on the ball and is being let down slightly by the lack of movement from her attacking team mates and the strong dutch defending.

In the ninth minute, the Netherlands win the ball on the left and, yet again, manage to hit the baseline. Leurink sends the ball across the goal and van Male scores at the back post. Korea look really weak at defending this sort of attack, as dutch 8, fizzles another ball across the face of the goal, with the ball this time, without the ball hitting the back board on this occasion.

A missed interception from Holland’s number 17 Ireen van den Assem, allows Seunga Park to take a shot from the top of the ‘D’, but it is fired well over the bar. It’s their first shot so far and we are 25 minutes into the game. And it was missed.

The Korean defence is really struggling, as they fail to make tackle, after tackle, allowing the Netherlands to almost shot at will. It seems the the Dutch just have to get the ball on target to score. At half time the score is 7 -0.

The Netherlands change their keeper, allowing Anne Veenendaal to have a little run out in the world cup.

In the first minute of the second half, a meaty challenge sees Youngran Kim on the floor, but the free hit goes to holland.

Holland’s positional defending is forcing korea to only go sideways. The benefit of this, is that they eventually win possession back, with a bit of patience. On one occasion, captain Dirkse van den Heuvel wins the ball after her opponent runs out of places to go and counters quickly down the left flank winning a long corner. They are very well organised.

In the fourth minute of the second half the dutch win a short corner. Both the first and second shot are saved, but the third goes wide of the post and out of play. Two minutes later and they get  another one. It’s a top ‘D’ strike that smashes off the post and the Koreans quickly counter sensing that this is the opportunity that they could get something, anything,  out of the game, but the Dutch players are quick and win the ball back in their bottom left corner of the pitch.

Hyejeong Shin is looking decent for Korea, but like her team captain earlier on, is being let down by the inadequacies of her team mates.

12 minutes into this period, the Dutch win another short corner. Caia van Maasakker takes the shot (she wasn’t on the pitch for the first two). She drags it, top left and the ball cannons off the angle of the bar. 50 seconds later, the dutch get another. van Maasakker lines up for another shot, but her team mate, who’s trapping it, spils the ball, and the chance is gone.

I think that the Koreans have been given an earful at half time, as they aren’t letting Holland walk through them any more, but this means defending a lot deeper and they are unable to retain possession in higher areas of the pitch.

In the fourth minute of final period, South Korea’s Seul ki Cheon wins ball high in dutch half, counters, feeds a through ball, for Hyejin Cho, but the Dutch are able to clear their lines. This is the first circle entry for the Koreans in this half and only the second of the game.

Half way through this period Welten picks the ball up in Korean half, drives forward into the circle, the keeper has to commit to her and the dutch number 12 plays a square pass left for Jonker, who just misses at the left hand post. In the tenth minute Holland fire another shot over the bar. They still not as fluid through the Korean defence as they were at the start.

With three minutes remaining, the Koreans have another circle entry with the ball fizzing across the near post, but the Dutch handle things and move the ball away from danger. Hyejeong Shin wins the ball high up the pitch and drives into the circle and plays a pass for team mate Mi Hun Park, but the shot isn’t really on from that angle and the move breaks down. Closer, but still no cigar.

The game comes to an end, with no goals being scored in the second half. The Netherlands 7 – 0 South Korea.