June 10, 2002
Daegu, Korea - Behind the stellar play of former UCLA goalkeeper Brad Friedel (1990-92), the U.S. Soccer Team valiantly fought to a 1-1 tie against co-host Korea. The tie puts the U.S. in second place in Group D with four points, and the Americans need just a win or tie against Poland on Friday to advance to the next round for the first time since 1994.
Friedel was named the Chevrolet "Man of the Match" after making seven saves in the match, including a penalty kick save with less than 10 minutes to play in the first half. After U.S. defender Jeff Agoos was ruled to have brought down Sun Hon Hwang in the box as the two players jostled to get a head on a free kick from 25 yards out. Midfielder Eul Yong Lee stepped up to the spot, but Friedel dove to his right to save the low shot, and defender Eddie Pope was able to pounce on the rebound before being fouled to end the play.
"I felt that he was going that way the whole time. Why? I don't know,? said Friedel. "If someone would've said you could have four points going into your third match, I think we would've taken it."
The save helped the U.S. take a 1-0 lead into halftime. The Americans' goal was scored by Clint Mathis in the 24th minute.
The second half began as the first half ended, with Korea pushing continuously for the equalizer. In the 47th minute, Friedel saved another sure goal, coming off his line and making a difficult reaction save with his right hand after a 10-yard shot by forward Ki Hyeon Seol.
Korea finally broke through in the 78th minute, when second-half substitute Jung Hwan Ahn rose above Agoos to connect with a perfect Eul Yong Lee free kick and flick in backwards just inside the far post past a helpless Friedel.
"It was a ball played in between the defense and myself, and I think we were put under a lot of pressure," said Friedel. "Both teams were very tired at the end, we lost concentration for a split second and they put it away. I think you have to give them (Korea) some credit. They put us under a lot of pressure, in the second half. It was difficult to withstand that much pressure."
Frankie Hejduk (1992-94) started and played all 90 minutes of the U.S. Eddie Lewis (1992-95) made his World Cup debut when he entered the game in the 75th minute.