Korea Republic clinch fourth EAFF title

Japan who were aiming to be the first to win the tournament as hosts, started brightly with an early goal after three minutes.

Yu Kobayashi converted from the spot to give Vahid Halilhodzic’s side a 1-0 lead but their advantage was short-lived as the Taeguk Warriors fought back in spectacular fashion – firing three goals before half-time.

Kim Shin-wook put Korea Republic level 10 minutes later and Jung Woo-young found the back of the net in the 23rd minute to give the visitors a 2-1 advantage before Shin-wook added his second 10 minutes before the interval.

Japan worked hard in the second half to find a breakthrough but it never came and Kobayashi turned villain on 69 minutes when he scored an own goal, much to the dismay of goalkeeper Nakamura Kosuke.

Four Korea Republic players picked up awards – Cho Hyun-woo (Best Goalkeeper), Jang Hyun-soo (Best Defender), Kim Shin-wook (Top Scorer with three goals) while the Most Valuable Player accolade went to Lee Jae-sung.

Korea Republic, who also won the Championship in 2003, 2008 and 2015 finished with seven points while the Samurai Blue ended their campaign a point behind.


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