The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) is pulling the wool over our eyes with intentional editing.
The AFC U-17 Asian Cup 2023 final between South Korea and Japan took place at Pathum Thani Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand on June 2. South Korea, looking to return to the top spot after a 21-year absence, lost 0-3 to Japan.
The score may have seemed lopsided, but it was largely due to some questionable officiating. South Korea struggled with the inconsistent and Japan-favored Thai referee. Despite being outnumbered, Korea had to settle for the runner-up spot after conceding three goals.
The referee was tough on Korea. The referee let Jin Tae-ho (Youngsanggo) go down early in the first half when he was pushed by the arm inside the Japanese penalty box. Then, he showed two yellow cards to Ko Jong-hyun (Matango) for his defense. Both times he was cautioned, he was outside the box and far from the danger zone. It wasn’t even a big collision, but they gave him a card while skipping over a foul in the Japanese box.
Eventually, Ko Jong-hyun was sent off in the 44th minute, and the tide quickly turned. In the first half, Korea and Japan had been attacking each other evenly, but when the score was 10-11, it was bound to tip the scales. Furthermore, the referee allowed Japan to move the spot of the free kick by 5 meters after a foul by Ko Jong-hyun. This increased the distance of the free kick to a direct hit, leading to Japan’s first goal.
In the second half, Korea continued to suffer the same fate. In the 38th minute, Kim Myung-joon (Pochul High School) was tripped by the goalkeeper inside the opponent’s box. It was clear that Kim had touched the ball first and then tripped over his hand, so a penalty kick should have been awarded. Once again, the referee circled his hands at the protesting Korean team, arguing that the Japanese goalkeeper only touched the ball.
If there had been a video assistant referee (VAR), the Japanese goalkeeper would have been shown a card, not to mention a penalty kick. However, the referee ended up giving a warning to Byun Sung-hwan, who protested loudly. In the midst of a series of suspiciously biased calls, it was confirmed that the Thai referee was biased in favor of Japan. He blew the whistle in three of Japan’s six games. He also officiated in every rivalry match between Uzbekistan, Australia, and South Korea.
While the calls were highly controversial among viewers and the Korean Football Association protested, the AFC didn’t bat an eye. In fact, the AFC produced a three-minute highlight of the final, deliberately removing the controversial call. Two penalties, including the watershed moment when Ko Jong-hyun was sent off, were also edited out. It shows the AFC’s determination not to accept the offense.
After finishing as runners-up, head coach Byun Sung-hwan said after the game, “We prepared a lot for the Korea-Japan final, but it’s a shame 안전놀이터 we couldn’t show it all. Above all, our players did not give 100% of their capabilities, and the flow of the game changed unintentionally, so we could not bring the result.” “It hurt me a lot as a coach to see my players in tears because of such a situation,” he said.