World Cup 2018: South Korea Wins at Democracy

“The World Cup, in South Korea, is usually a huge deal—but not this year. The South Korean media has barely covered it, and conversations rarely turn to it. Part of the reason is that the 2018 Korean squad is pretty bad. A dedicated Korea fan could find some solace in the fact that the Taegeuk Warriors—so named after the Korean word for the red and blue yin-yang symbol in the middle of the South Korean flag—have qualified for ten World Cups in all and the past nine in a row, a record for an Asian country. Our ebullient striker Son Heung-min can be a joy to watch—if only there were a few more world-class talents around him. But since South Korea drew the same group as defending champions Germany and the strong Mexican squad that just defeated Die Mannschaft, the national team is unlikely to advance out of the group stage. The Korean squad could not even eke out a draw against its fellow underdog Sweden, losing 0-1 in a listless and ugly game.” NYBooks

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