Intercontinental Cup: Syria downs DPR Korea with a fine second-half show

Syria scored four goals in the second half to defeat DPR Korea 5-2 in a comeback victory on Monday.

Syria will face Tajikistan in its next Intercontinental Cup match on July 10.   -  AIFF Media

Syria proved a handful for DPR Korea as it erased a goal’s deficit to dominate the latter with 5-2 win here in the Intercontinental Cup at the EKA Arena on Monday.

The Koreans established their authority early the first half when Ri Un Il set up captain Jong Il Gwan with a diagonal pass to help the latter finish with a snap right footer in the third minute. Korea earned three more chances in course of the action but the Syrian goalkeeper Ibrahim Amla stood in the way foiling the attempts coming from Ul Il, Han Thae Hyok and Ri Chang Ho.

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This effectively kept Syria in the hunt as the middle-eastern side tried to plot a comeback late in the first half. Syria found the equaliser in the 41st minute mounting the offensive through the flanks as Khaled Kourdoghli set a cross in the box that was diverted home by Shadi Al Hamwi.

Syria struck the rhythm early in the second half and gained the lead in the 55th minute when Mohammad Almarmour scored from a solo effort. This gave Syria the required impetus and the team continued to pile up misery on the Koreans with two more goals in the next 11 minutes.

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Captain Firas Alkhatib showed his fine ability in a creative role as he first set up Al Hamwi at the hour mark to make it 3-1 before putting another fine assist in the 66th minute for Almarmour to run into an open Korean box and find the net. After Korea had made it 4-2 through Ri Hyong Jin, Alkhatib put the finishing touch in the 90+2 minute to get himself in the scoring list and securing a great win for Syria.

The result: Syria 5 (Shadi Al Hamwi 41,60, Mohammad Almarmour 55, 66, Firas Alkhatib 90+2) bt North Korea 2 (Jong Il Gwan 3, Ri Hyong Jin 78)

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