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(World Cup) S. Korea head coach to miss final group match vs. native Portugal

All News 03:10 November 29, 2022

By Yoo Jee-ho

AL RAYYAN, Qatar, Nov. 28 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's Portugal-born head coach Paulo Bento will miss his team's final group stage match against his native country this week after getting a red card after Monday's loss to Ghana.

Referee Anthony Taylor showed Bento the red card following a heated exchange after the end of South Korea's 3-2 defeat to Ghana in Group H at Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, west of Doha.

South Korea head coach Paulo Bento (L) receives a red card from referee Anthony Taylor following South Korea's 3-2 loss to Ghana in Group H at the FIFA World Cup at Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, west of Doha, on Nov. 28, 2022. (Yonhap)

South Korea head coach Paulo Bento (L) receives a red card from referee Anthony Taylor following South Korea's 3-2 loss to Ghana in Group H at the FIFA World Cup at Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, west of Doha, on Nov. 28, 2022. (Yonhap)

South Korea had been awarded a corner in the dying moments of the contest, with 10 minutes of additional time ticking down. But just as South Korean players were trying to set up for the play, Taylor blew the final whistle.

Teams are typically given a chance to finish a set-piece play at the end of halves or matches.

With the red card, Bento has been suspended for South Korea's final Group H match against Portugal at 6 p.m. Friday, back at Education City Stadium. It's a must-win match for South Korea, who are stuck at one point after a draw and a loss so far.

Sergio Costa, Bento's top assistant who attended the postmatch press conference, defended his bench boss.

"I was close by and he said nothing that was inappropriate to the referee," Costa said. "Paulo is an emotional person. He defends his own people with the last drop of his energy. We all understand his reaction."

Costa said Bento was upset because Taylor had let a similar situation to play out at the end of the first half.

"We had the last opportunity and the referee took it away from us," Costa said.

Costa will be in charge of the team on the bench Friday, and he said things will not change much. If anything, Bento's ejection will galvanize the team together, Costa said.

"We shall continue to prepare ourselves in the same way," he said. "I think (Bento's absence) will make us better united and will bring together all our energy to compete and play an aggressive game."

South Korea head coach Paulo Bento (L) tries to console his captain Son Heung-min following South Korea's 3-2 loss to Ghana in Group H at the FIFA World Cup at Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, west of Doha, on Nov. 28, 2022. (Yonhap)

South Korea head coach Paulo Bento (L) tries to console his captain Son Heung-min following South Korea's 3-2 loss to Ghana in Group H at the FIFA World Cup at Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, west of Doha, on Nov. 28, 2022. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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