South Korea beat Saudi Arabia 4-2 on penalties to advance to the quarter-finals of the Asian Cup after a thrilling round of 16 match ended 1-1 in extra time at the Education City Stadium in Qatar Tuesday.
After South Korea’s Cho Gue-sung equalized in second-half injury time to cancel out Abdullah Radif’s opener, Sami Al-Najei and Abdulrahman Ghareeb had their penalties saved to allow South Korea South to qualify for the round of 16, where they will face Australia.
In a scoreless first half, Saudi Arabia hit the crossbar twice from corners while Son Heung-min was the only South Korean player to test the keeper with two tame efforts on goal.
However, Saudi Arabia took the lead in the first minute after the restart when half-time substitute Abdullah Radif made an instant impact, sneaking in behind the defense and finding the far corner of the net on a pass from captain Salem Al-Dawsari.
With Saudi Arabia having one foot in the quarter-finals, South Korea finally broke through the Saudi defense in the ninth minute of added time when their pressure paid off and Cho Gue-sung headed home from close range to force extension.
South Korea then converted all of its shots on goal to advance. But they will have just two days to recover, with their quarter-final clash against 2015 champions Australia taking place on Friday.