South Korea will face Uruguay in the last 16 of the World Cup after a hard-fought draw with Nigeria was enough to secure second place in Group B.
The Asian side have previously never been past the opening stage of a World Cup held outside of their own country and were made to fight to the last minute for the point which put them through after Greece were beaten 2-0 by Argentina.
Nigeria created chances throughout and took the lead when Chidi Odiah squared for Kalu Uche to tap in early on.
But South Korea hit back through Lee Jung-Soo, who scrambled the ball past Vincent Enyeama from Ki Sung-Yeung's free-kick.
Park Chu-Young's curled free-kick restored South Korea's lead four minutes into the second half but Yakubu coolly slotted in a penalty after Kim Nam-Il fouled Chinedu Obasi Ogbuke to level the game.
Nigeria started the game looking like a different proposition to the side that produced disjointed displays in their defeats by Argentina and Greece.
Lars Lagerback's side finally showed purpose on the break and kept the ball well in midfield with the main catalyst being the coach's decision to hand captain Kanu a first start of the tournament.
Despite the 33-year-old veteran reaching the twilight of his career, a combination of his sublime skills and familiar laid-back style both calmed and inspired his team-mates in equal measure.
However, when Nigeria took the lead after 12 minutes, it was not Portsmouth striker Kanu but the impressive Odiah who was creator.
Odiah was given too much space on the right flank and burst down the line before crossing to the edge of the six-yard box, where the unseen Uche got in front of oblivious right-back Cha Du-Ri and stroked past the goalkeeper.
Nigeria could have doubled the lead but Obasi Ogbuke slammed a strike wide when he should have squared to one of four team-mates in the box, while Kanu once again linked play delightfully when he played in Uche, whose 25-yard strike clattered against the right post.
However, Kanu's impact alone was not enough to hold the South Koreans as the 2002 World Cup quarter-finalists began to pick up the majority of the loose balls.
South Korea eventually levelled when Lee Jung-Soo was left unmarked at the back post and awkwardly bundled in Ki Sung-Yeung's cross.
And the stuffing was further knocked out of Nigeria minutes into the second half when Park Chu-Young's free-kick from the left somehow curled past goalkeeper Enyeama and into the corner.
South Korea began to capitalise on tired Nigerian legs as Chu-Young smashed a free-kick wide and had a close-range effort saved by Enyeama.
But as the momentum of the game swung once more Nigeria had a glorious chance to get back into the game, only for Yakubu to incredibly side-foot wide from four yards out when confronted by an open goal.
However, redemption came quickly for the Everton striker and when substitute Kim Nam-Il felled Ogbasi Ogbuke in the area, Yakubu calmly stroked the penalty into the right corner.
A frantic final 20 minutes ensued as both sides missed chances but the draw was enough for South Korea to progress and leave Nigeria as the third African team to exit the tournament after South Africa and Cameroon, who still have one game to play.
Attempts on target
Attempts off target
Projected table based on current scores
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|Group B teams||P||W||D||L||F||A||GD||PTS|
|Group C teams||P||W||D||L||F||A||GD||PTS|
|Group D teams||P||W||D||L||F||A||GD||PTS|
|Group E teams||P||W||D||L||F||A||GD||PTS|
|Group F teams||P||W||D||L||F||A||GD||PTS|
|Group G teams||P||W||D||L||F||A||GD||PTS|