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Soccer preview: Italy to face tough resistance from S Korea
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15:00, August 09, 2008

Roaring Italian men's football team is going to face some tough resistance from South Korea in their second group match here on Sunday.

Italy beat Honduras 3-0 in their opening game last Thursday. Theattacking trio, Sebastian Giovinco, Giuseppe Rossi and Robert Acquafresca proved their qualities in front of their opponent's goalmouth.

A stunning strike from Giovinco, followed by two penalties delivered by Rossi and Acquafresca, respectively, opened their Olympic dream in the best possible way.

European countries have long missed the Olympic gold since Spanish won their title on their own soil 16 years ago. This Italian team, however, shoulders the reputation for the football-crazy continent.

If Italy could beat South Korea and grab another three points, it may advance to next round as the No. 1 in Group D, thus avoid star-studded Brazil in the quarter final, which almost ensured their first position in the group after beating Belgium 1-0.

Yet South Korea is no doubt a strong opponent to any other teams. Their strong will power and abundant energy could give a good punch to the Italians.

Striker Lee Keun Ho already gave their first opponent Cameroon enough headaches, as well as Park Chu Young, who broke the tie and scored home in the 68th minute.

South Korea was disappointed to see the scoreboard leveled 1-1 in the last few minutes by Cameroon, but it still had possibility to take over their next opponent.

"The match didn't go as we expected," South Korea's head coach Park Sung Wha said, referring to the 1-1 draw against Cameroon. "However, we are confident to win our next opponent."

"Italy won't be a big problem for us," he said.

"South Korea's defense was really good," Cameroon's head coach Martin Ndtoungou said after the match. "We really didn't find many opportunities."


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