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S.Korea held by Jordan in World Cup qualifier

South Korea squandered a two-goal lead in front of 53,000 fans here Saturday as Jordan battled to a 2-2 draw in the third round of Asian World Cup qualifying.

With his team trailing by a brace, second-half substitute Hassan Abdel Fattah scored twice seven minutes apart to pull off an improbable draw for Jordan, who are now second in Group 3 with four points.

South Korea are top on five points with Turkmenistan and North Korea playing on Monday.

Korea dominated early on with Manchester United midfielder Park Ji-Sung giving them the lead in the 38th minute, converting a headed pass from Lee Chung-Yong deep in the Jordan box.

They went two up shortly after the break when Park Chu-Young converted a penalty after midfielder Cho Won-Hee was hacked down from behind by Hatem Aqel just inside the penalty area.

With South Korea in control, substitute Kim Do-Heon almost scored a third but his header, set up by Cho from the right, sailed just over the bar.

South Korea paid dearly for the near-miss with Abdel Fattah banging home his own rebound from close range in the 72nd minute with goalkeeper Kim Yong-Dae caught out of position.

Seven minutes later Abdel Fattah struck again.

Al Matalka’s cross from the left found the charging midfielder unmarked in the box and he rolled the ball in with his left foot past the diving Kim.

The two countries play each other again on June 7 in Jordan.

Sat 31 May, 2008
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