The Brazil North Korea game was actually a big surprise. To be fair nothing short of a surprise was expected with a team that no one knows much about. North Korea has not been to a World Cup since the 1960’s. North Korea is the lowest FIFA ranked team ranked at 150th while Brazil is ranked 1st. Learning about North Korea was one of the most interesting aspects of the game and makes me actually want to rout for North Korea. You could find no bigger underdog then North Korea. Only three players for North Korea play international soccer two playing for Japan and one in Russia so even the few players who play pro outside of North Korea do not play for really tough leagues.
We learned about North Korea from the beginning when we seen some North Koreans crying during the national anthem and all of them are sigining compared to Brazil where some of them were not even paying attention to their national anthem. I have to wonder if they do not sing if they will get killed when they come home, and if the crying was real or they were told to.
Watching how North Korea played was enlightening about North Korea and their culture. The game was more then just a soccer game it taught us about a society and a culture. The North Koreans would point to themselves when they were the ones who touched the ball out, they were not physically aggressive but would move there hands up and made it very clear they were doing everything they could to not even accidentally foul anyone I would not be surprised if no one got so much as a yellow card on North Korean team. North Korea must be the easiest team to ref you know they wont intentionally foul and with about 25 minutes when a North Korean got hurt you knew unlike other soccer players he was not faking an injury. The North Koreans showed Brazil respect helping each other up and such even Brazil started to show them the same.
What was also surprising is how well North Korea was able to do. After the first half hour North Korea was able to be tied 0-0 which was a surprise and they even began to get more confidence in themselves and begin to attack Brazil more. After about 20 minutes into the game North Korea seemed to get better and they kept getting more confident as time went on. The North Korean goalie was also a surprise he was quiet capable and saved many goals and is probably one of the best things going for North Korea. The defense of North Korea is amazing you watch them and they do not make mistakes they stay where they are supposed to be they have an almost military like precision while on defense. The offense though seems to now know how to play because every time they got close they shot before even being in the goal box.
There was almost no stoppage time in the first half and that was because of how North Korea played so cleanly. It was amazing to see North Korea tied 0-0 at the first half. I had started at wanting Brazil to win and by half-time I wanted North Korea to tie or if possible win.
After 10 minutes into the first half Brazil was able to finally score. After 70 minutes Brazil got their second goal and that brought Brazil back to be the team we expect of them. After the second goal by Brazil North Korea’s defense broke down but they were able to still keep Brazil from scoring. North Korea offered the biggest surprise of the night by getting a single goal with only 2 minutes left in the match.
While the first half was a surprise the second half was what you would expect. North Korea did better then most people would have expected but it was not enough to give North Korea a point. While North Korea did lose they did perform far better then expected and should be proud of their play. North Korea only lost to the best team in the world by one point that is a great accomplishment.