South Korea 2-3 Ghana: Ajax striker Kudus helps Addo’s men to huge three points
Ghana breathed fresh life into their World Cup campaign with a thrilling 3-2 win against South Korea at the Education City Stadium in Qatar.
After Ghana raced into a 2-0 lead, Cho Gue-sung scored twice in three second-half minutes to draw South Korea level before Mohammed Kudus’ winner fired Ghana to its first World Cup win in a dozen year.
South Korea remain on one point in Group H, while Ghana’s win takes them into second place, with Portugal and Uruguay meeting in Monday’s final match in Lusail.
Both sides made three changes from their opening games and it was South Korea who started the game on the front foot.
South Korea – with captain Son Heung-min again wearing a protective face mask – registered seven corners in 18 minutes as Ghana failed to gain control of the game.
But despite their dominance, Paulo Bento’s side were unable to muster a significant attack and midway through the opening period Southampton defender Mohammed Salisu scored against the run of play.
Crystal Palace’s Jordan Ayew was the creator as South Korea made a hash of clearing their free-kick and Salisu tapped home on the turn.
Ghana’s celebrations were temporarily interrupted when replays showed Ayew’s set-piece hit the hand of his brother Andre Ayew.
A VAR check followed, however, before Premier League referee Anthony Taylor was told to let the goal stand.
Suddenly Ghana were in charge and 10 minutes later Kudus doubled their advantage when he headed Jordan Ayew’s exceptional free-kick into the back of the net.
South Korea looked down and out at the interval, but Cho gave them a lifeline when he headed in substitute Lee Kang-in’s cross shortly before the hour mark.
And just three minutes later, Cho stunned Ghana when he scored his second of the night with a powerful header past goalkeeper Lawrence Ati-Zigi.
South Korea had their tails up but they were on level terms for just seven minutes after Kudus completed his brace.
Inaki Williams fluffed Gideon Mensah’s pull-back but the ball fell kindly to Kudus, who swept home to score the game’s third goal in 10 wild and crazy minutes.
South Korea went in search of an equaliser, with Ati-Zigi turning over Kang-in’s free-kick, before Salisu hacked Kim Jin-su’s effort off the line.
But Ghana survived 10 minutes of stoppage time to deny South Korea another comeback, securing their first win on the World Cup stage since they beat the USA in the round of 16 in South Africa in 2010.
A furious Bento was shown a red card by referee Taylor at the final whistle and will miss the team’s final group game against his native Portugal.
READ MORE: Is this the best or worst World Cup ever? It has either been cool or brilliant