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Page last updated at 17:54 GMT, Friday, 25 June 2010 18:54 UK

World Cup 2010: Kim wants N Koreans to toughen up

Yaya Toure

Highlights - North Korea 0-3 Ivory Coast

North Korea coach Kim Jong Hun has said his players need to get stronger to be able to compete against more celebrated nations in future World Cup finals.

The Koreans lost all three of their Group G games, ending their campaign with a 3-0 defeat to Ivory Coast.

"For the next World Cup our players have to improve their individual abilities," said Kim. "They must become stronger mentally and physically.

"Though our players were very good in defence, our attack was overpowered."

North Korea were competing at the World Cup for only the second time, having famously reached the quarter-finals on English soil in 1966.

This has laid the foundation for us to grow in the future

N Korea coach Kim Jong Hun

The time round, they lost 2-1 to Brazil after an impressively disciplined display, but suffered a 7-0 hammering to Portugal.

And when Ivory Coast went 2-0 up inside 20 minutes through Yaya Toure and Romaric in Nelspruit on Friday, another drubbing looked on the cards.

But the Koreans improved in the second half and, although they offered little attacking threat, they only conceded one further goal - scored by Salomon Kalou in the 82nd minute.

"We really wanted to do well in this last match - I went into it feeling like I really needed to score a goal," said striker Jong Tae-Se. "I'm very upset that I wasn't able to do that."

Kim added his players could learn from their World Cup experience.

"I believe we had two good results," Kim reflected. "It has laid the foundation for us to grow in the future. So this has been a very useful experience for us. Up until the last minute of the match, they really put in all their effort."

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see also
Highlights - North Korea 0-3 Ivory Coast
25 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
World Cup day 15 photos
25 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Kim takes blame for heavy defeat
21 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
North Korea buoyant despite loss
15 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Team tracker and Predictor
27 May 10 |  World Cup 2010
World Cup venues
05 Dec 09 |  World Cup 2010

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