Today, the Men’s U20 World Cup kicked off in Korea with the first fixtures in Group A and B being played. Here’s how the day’s action overseas played out:
Venezuela U20 2-0 Germany U20-Group B (14:00 Korean time)
Venezuela got their World Cup underway well with a 2-0 win over Germany, who are expected to do well in this tournament and potentially go on to challenge for the trophy. Adalberto Penaranda had an early shot for Venezuela blocked before Ronald Hernandez had a shot towards the bottom corner tipped aside by Germany goalkeeper Dominik Reimann, either side of a missed attempt by Germany midfielder Suat Serdar. Phillip Ochs saw his 20-yard shot saved by Wuilker Farinez, with Ronaldo Pena blazing over from 12 yards out when well-placed for Venezuela. Ochs again fired wide just before the interval. Following the 15-minute break, Yeferson Soteldo and Hernandez both missed the target before Pena put his country ahead with a scuffed shot into the bottom corner five minutes after half-time. It didn’t take long for Venezuela to double their lead when Penaranda fed Sergio Cordova into the box, who fired low and hard into the bottom corner to round up the scoring. Venezuela continued to have shots on goal as they penned Germany back throughout the rest of the half, as the South American side got their first three points of the group stage on the opening day.
Vanuatu U20 2-3 Mexico U20-Group B (17:00 Korean time)
Vanuatu were competing in their first-ever official FIFA tournament and the Island side didn’t get off to the best of starts when Vanuatu goalkeeper Daniel Alick spilled a header from Kevin Magna into his own net, before Mexico made it 2-0 when Alick failed to get hold of a cross from Uriel Antuna, gifting the ball to striker Ronaldo Cisneros who was left with an easy tap-in. Vanuatu were able to pull one back however when a pass was slipped through the Mexican defence, with captain Bong Kalo racing onto the pass and slotting beyond the keeper. Mexico’s Antuna saw his cross inches away from being converted before right-back Diego Cortes saw his cross deflected onto the post, hit the crossbar before being claimed by Alick in goal. Ronaldo Wilkins pulled Vanuatu level as he managed to weave past one defender before rolling his shot into the far corner from outside the box. Kevin Lara’s cross was headed narrowly wide by Cisneros before Alan Cervantes’ corner kick for Mexico was headed narrowly over by Francisco Venegas. Mexico continued to apply the pressure though and got the winner a minute from time when Lara’s cross was brought down by Edson Alvarez, who poked past the keeper to win Mexico the game.
South Korea 3-0 Guinea-Group A (20:00 Korean time)
The hosts South Korea got themselves off to a good start at the U20 World Cup with a 3-0 win over Guinea. Guinea’s Jules Keita looked dangerous early on every time he received the ball and he almost broke the deadlock as he weaved away from three Korean men but poked his effort wide. Barcelona’s Lee Seoung-Woo drove forward from just inside the centre circle and was allowed to travel by the Guinea midfield, before his hopeful 20-yard shot took a fortunate deflection and looped in over the head of the Guinea keeper, Moussa Camara, for 1-0. Seoung-Woo then turned began to create things for South Korea as he magically got past his marker on the byline before laying it back on to the run of striker Cho Young-Wook, who fired past Camara from close range, however, the goal was ruled out with Seoung-Woo adjudged to have run the ball out of play. After the break, Momo Yansane saw his effort parried away by Song Bum-Keun just inside the box, before Korea made it 2-0. Seoung-Woo became the provider, slotting a pass through the legs of a Guinea defender albeit a fortunate deflection for Lim Min-Hyeok to run onto before confidently slotting past Camara. Seoung-Woo then got himself another assist with a lofted pass forward from midfield. The Number 10 knocked the ball down for Paik Seung-Ho, who lofted the ball over Camara to round up the scoring. Guinea’s Mamadou Kane had a shot easily caught by Bum-Keun, moments before the referee called time on proceedings.