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Wednesday, 26 June, 2002, 10:54 GMT 11:54 UK
World Cup diary: Korea
BBC Sport Online's Stuart Roach finds himself on the other side of the microphone
Tables reversed on Roach
BBC Sport Online's Stuart Roach

It's a frightening prospect when the hunter becomes the prey.

An innocent stroll around the Korean Folk Village tourist attraction just outside Seoul had me on the back foot when a local news team asked to interview me.

Suddenly, the microphone was pointing the wrong way and I was asked what I thought of the Korean Folk Village.

As a starter for 10, it's a surprisingly tough one and I came out in a Jose Camacho as I stood in the Seoul spotlight.

Thankfully, talk quickly turned to the South Korean football team and I told them Britain believes Korea have a team to be proud of.

The comment instantly elevated me to the status of the second most popular exiled European in Korea, behind Guus Hiddink, and a crowd quickly gathered.

With the South Korean World Cup dream no longer a story, it appears no news is bad news for the non-Korean novelty tourists.


The wall of sound created by the massed home supporters at this World Cup has largely been down to the efforts of one group.

The Red Devils are the official supporters group of the Korean National team and have acted as orchestra leader at all of the South Korea matches.

With a membership of 120,000, the organisation has sent an average of 3,000 fans to Korean matches.

The are also responsible for the impressive pre-match card displays which have lit up this tournament.

Tuesday's message did not get through to the South Korea players
Tuesday's message was unclear

Before the second round game with Italy, fans behind one goal displayed the message 'Again 1966' a reference to the anticipated repeat of Italy's World Cup defeat at the hands of North Korea.

Against Spain it was 'Pride of Asia' and for Tuesday's semi-final clash with Germany the message was 'Dream Comes True' written in Korean.

Clearly, their mistake was to start writing instructions in a language the Europeans didn't understand.


Ahn Jung-Hwan's slick speed skating routine has been voted the best celebration at this World Cup.

Fans on the official Fifa World Cup website went for the Korean midfielder's mickey-taking dance ahead of South African Julius Aghahowa's somersaults.

Papa Bouba Diop's dance around his Senagalese shirt took third place.

Ahn's celebration was in support of Korean speed skater Kim Dong-sung, whose disqualification at the Winter Olympics allowed American Apolo Anton Ohno to take gold.


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