FIFA World Cup™ finals history
Korea DPR are indelibly linked to the FIFA World Cup™ thanks to the exploits of their 1966 team. North Korea became one of the original giant-killers with a famous win over Italy in England, and then fell just shy of an unthinkable appearance in the semi-finals. Their only other appearance on world football’s greatest stage was in 2010 when they ground their way through a tough qualifying campaign to reach South Africa. There they turned in a heroic effort in the opener against Brazil in succumbing to a 2-1 loss, only to crash to hefty defeats against Portugal and Côte d'Ivoire.
South Africa 2010 was their first tournament at either world or continental level since a group-stage exit at the 1992 AFC Asian Cup. Since then the Chollima have exited two Asian Cups in the first round. On both occasions they turned in conservative workmanlike performances, with little flair in attack. Their last World Cup qualifying campaign proved disastrous with the Koreans eliminated in the penultimate stage of Asian qualifying becoming the first nation eliminated of the 32 teams who lined up in South Africa.
Veteran coach Jo Tong-Sop is hugely familiar with the country's system having coached all the nation’s youth teams, and serving as an assistant at South Africa 2010. Notably he led the nation’s U-19 team to rare continental success in 2010. He assumed the senior team reins after South Africa and since coached at two Asian Cups.
1 – Korea DPR were the first Asian team to progress to the World Cup knockout stage when they did so at England 1966.
The former stars
Pak Doo-Ik, Pak Seung-Zin, Ji Yun-Nam