The Seoul EOU Cup U18 International Youth Tournament 2023 (hereinafter referred to as the Seoul EOU Cup), an eco-friendly soccer tournament that emphasizes global sustainability, kicked off on Tuesday with a match between South Korea and Ukraine. The two teams exchanged six goals in the match, which ended in a 4-2 victory for Korea.
The age-group national teams have been enjoying a string of good news. Following their gold medal win at the Hangzhou Asian Games, the Korean U18 team picked up a refreshing first win at the Seoul EOU Cup, defeating Ukraine 4-2.
Prior to the kickoff, Lee Jong-hwan, Chairman of the Seoul City Council’s Committee on Culture, Sports, and Tourism, and Dmitry Ponomarenko, Ambassador of Ukraine, served as the flag bearer. The ceremony also included a “SAY NO TO WAR” rally for global peace.
South Korea lined up in an aggressive 4-2-3-1 formation. In the back line, they started “high school center back” Lee Ye-chan, who recently transferred from Yeongdeungpo Gongo to Portimonense SC in Portugal. Ukraine countered with a 4-4-2, playing power soccer. The game was played at a fast pace from the start with both teams attacking.
South Korea opened the scoring in the 10th minute when #17 Park Soo-bin (Pohang Steelers U19) headed home a quick cross from the left side. Ukraine responded two minutes later with a great chance in front of goal, but the finish was off. Ukraine, who continued to look for the Korean goal, equalized in the 23rd minute when Ponomarenko Matvi (#10) crossed the ball from the left flank for Vasilets Maxim (#19) to finish.
The tie didn’t last long. Two minutes before halftime, South Korea took the lead when Kang Kang-wook (#10, Bupyeonggo) headed home a free kick from the right flank. The first half remained intense, with both teams earning one yellow card each.
In the 15th minute of the second half, South Korea took the lead. Ha Jung-woo (#9, Daedong Semugo) took advantage of a misplaced pass by the opposing defense and scored with a powerful shot into the top right corner. At 3-1, Ukraine never let up. In the 22nd minute of the second half, Ukraine’s Panchenko Sergiy (#9) headed in a free kick to make it 3-2. 메이저사이트
But South Korea was strong. Substitute Baek Min-kyu (#13, Pyeongtaek Jinwi FC) scored to make it 4-2. Children in the stands continued to cheer for Korea, and the game ended the same way.
The Seoul EOU Cup is an international tournament featuring U-18 teams from South Korea, Ukraine, Morocco, and Vietnam. The four different nations will compete in a full league format over three days on October 10, 12, and 15 at Mokdong Stadium in Seoul.
South Korea U18 coach Lee Chang-hyun, who is overseeing the tournament, emphasized the experience and growth of the players at a media day on October 9. “I’m happy that we won our first game,” said Lee Chang-hyun. The players did a good job in training and I think it showed in their performance. I hope they will continue to grow.”
The name of the tournament, EOU, stands for ‘EARTH ON US’, which means ‘Earth and Community’. With the slogan “ALL LIFE ON EARTH DEPENDS ON US,” the tournament aims to promote the importance of a sustainable planet through soccer. The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) will participate in the tournament to encourage the use of public transportation and reusable containers, and various activities such as environmental donation campaigns will be held on the field.