South Korea advanced to the Under-20 World Cup quarters after hanging on for a 3-2 win over Ecuador Thursday night in Argentina.
Korea pounced early with goals from Lee Young-jun in the 11th minute and then Bae Jun-ho’s score after a strong move in the box in the 19th minute for a 2-0 lead.
Ecuador fought back midway through the half on a penalty kick after Korean defender Park Chang-woo was whistled for a foul on Kendry Paez just inside the penalty box.
Justin Cuero beat keeper Kim Joon-hong right down the middle to cut the Korean lead to 2-1.
Korea regained their two-goal cushion early in the second half when Choi Seuk-Hyon headed in a corner past Ecuador’s Gilmar Napa for a 3-1 lead in the 48th minute.
Ecuador applied some late pressure when they converted a corner kick of their own in the 84th minute on a Sebastian Gonzalez goal to make it 3-2 but failed to find the equalizer over the final minutes.