Clinical Korea beat Philippines 2-0, enter maiden final of AFC Women’s Asian CupFebruary 3, 2022
A clinical Korea dominated proceedings to beat Philippines 2-0 in the semi-finals to advance to their maiden AFC Women’s Asian Cup summit clash here on Thursday.
Cho So-hyun and Son Hwa-yeon scored first half goals for Korea to end the brilliant run of the Philippines who were making their first semifinal appearance at the continental showpiece at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex.
Korea face the winner of the second semifinal between holders Japan and former champions China in the final on Sunday.
Philippines can be proud of their efforts though as they gave the match their all and can look forward to an inaugural appearance in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. All the semifinalists of the Asian Cup directly qualified for the World Cup.
Korea, who have beaten pre-tournament favourites Australia in the quarterfinals, wasted no time in applying pressure from the get-go and opened scoring in the fourth minute when Cho headed in Kim Hye-ri’s corner kick past Philippines goalkeeper Olivia McDaniel.
Eager to impress in their first-ever semi-final appearance, the Philippines were undeterred by the early setback and Sofia Harrison’s attempt from distance six minutes later showed they meant business.
The Taeguk Ladies, however, continued to hold the lion’s share of possession and came close through Son Hwa-yeon’s efforts in the 15th and 19th minutes, but McDaniel’s safe hands kept the Philippines in the game.
Despite having to play on counter-attacks, Philippines had their moments with Katrina Guillou giving the Koreans a scare in the 24th minute when her long-range strike missed by mere inches.
Korea, however, looked dangerous every time they surged forward and doubled their lead in the 34th minute when an unmarked Son tapped in Choo Hyo-joo’s cross.
Philippines head coach Alen Stajcic sent on Malea Louise Cesar, Chandler McDaniel and Sara Castaneda at the start of the second half but the changes had little effect as Korea goalkeeper Kim Jung-mi was hardly tested.
It was harder for Korea to find opportunities in the second half as the Philippines kept their defence compact, but they almost found a goal in the 67th minute when Son got at the end of a series of passes only to shoot straight at McDaniels.
Korea continued to attack the Philippines goalmouth with Cho and substitute Lee Min-a getting into the thick of the action in the final 15 minutes, but couldn’t keep their strikes on target.
Lee should have scored the third in the 87th minute after squeezing past two defenders to collect a through pass in the final third, but McDaniels stood firm to deny her.