WC FIFA 2018: Sweden wins against South Korea by VAR penalty

South Korea World Cup

South Korea World Cup

Sweden made a winning start to their 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign as they beat South Korea 1-0 at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Group F on Monday.

Substitute Kim Min-woo appeared to have hacked down Viktor Claesson, and, after initially waving away furious appeals from Swedish players, referee Joel Aguilar consulted VAR and eventually pointed to the spot.

Sweden's starting players averaged about 1.90 metres (6-3), while South Korea's starters averaged about 1.83 metres (6 feet).

Four minutes later, Cho had to be alert once more to keep out a bullet header by Toivonen, but there was little he could do to prevent the Swedes from opening the scoring five minutes after the hour mark.

With every passing minute of the game, however, it seemed likely that Sweden simply didn't have the quality needed to finish off the chances they were creating.

Resilient Sweden held firm after the goal and the Hwang late scare aside, and a half-hearted South Korea appeal for a penalty, their defence rarely looked troubled. But it's football and the decision was a penalty, of course it's disappointing. Meanwhile, goalkeeper Robin Olsen was named in the line-up after recovering from a shoulder injury that had threatened his World Cup participation.

Swedish skipper Andreas Granqvist made no mistake from the penalty spot as he side-footed the ball into the empty side of the Korean goal.

The Manchester United centre-back was expected to start the match alongside Andreas Granqvist in Nizhny Novgorod, but he has been replaced by Pontus Jansson. "If we can be mentally strong we could do the same but the World Cup is no easy stage", Son added. While El Tri came at the Germans with pace - tearing them open through the middle and on the flanks every time they won the ball - neither Sweden nor South Korea showed they have that as a weapon in their arsenal.

Blatter arrives in Russian Federation for World Cup despite Fifa ban
The 82 year-old Swiss is banned from taking part in any Federation Internationale de Football Association activities until 2022. Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter arrived at the World Cup on Tuesday as a guest of Russian president Vladimir Putin .

Swedish spies were scuppered in their scouting of South Korea stars this week in a move that would make John le Carré proud.

Both Sweden and Korea knew a win here is significant., nigh, imperative. if they had to get out of the group.

However, their day to forget was summed up when the unmarked Hwang headed wide from eight yards.

"This is something small that has been turned into something much bigger because usually our information about our opponents comes from us watching them play matches".

Sweden coach Janne Andersson: "I felt the wait for the VAR was unnecessary. If it has been perceived in another way, we apologize", he said, Business Insider reported. "It was unfortunate we lost", he lamented, saying he was now focused on the next game against "formidable" Mexico. It certainly wasn't the one that Germany would've wanted. "I think I just performed like I've been preparing for this match".

"I think it'll be tougher than today against [those] two teams.We need to be ready. mentally we need to be there".

After losing to Sweden, South Korea seem unlikely to progress from Group F, as they still have to play Mexico and holders Germany.

Sweden's goal was the first they have scored in 402 minutes of worldwide football.

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