Impressive Korea DPR secure final berth
Korea DPR reached the FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup final for a third time after a 3-0 win over Venezuela at Amman's King Abdullah II International Stadium. Kim Pom-Ui and Ja Un-Yong, the goal heroines of their quarter-final win over Ghana, were again on target along with top scorer Ri Hae-Yon as the Asian champions proved too strong for Deyna Castellanos and Co.
Sin Jong-Bok's well-drilled side dominated from the outset and could have gone in front inside four minutes. That was when the lively Sung Hyang-Sim offered the first warning of Korea DPR's superior speed, bursting towards the byline and just missing the target with an inviting cross-cum-shot.
Venezuela struggled throughout against their opponents' pace and movement and it was no surprise when they fell behind on 15 minutes. There was little they could do, however, given the quality of the strike - an outstanding 25-yard curler sent in off the post at the top-left corner from Kim Pom-Ui.
At the other end, Castellanos was cutting a frustrated figure and her afternoon scarcely improved in the second half, which began with her curling a weak free-kick against the wall from 19 yards, then blasting high and wide when the ball rebounded back to her. The Vinotinto No9 can never be underestimated, though, and she did lead a superb break after 56 minutes, jinking past Pak Hye-Gyong before smashing in a shot that forced Ok Kum-Ju into a vital near-post save.
But the encouragement that this spell of second-half pressure brought to Venezuela was extinguished when, against the run of play, Korea DPR doubled their lead. It was not a goal that goalkeeper Nayluisa Caceres will want to see again, as she came for and missed a deep, floated Choe Un-Chong corner, leaving substitute Ja Un-Yong the simplest of back-post finishes.
And there was still time for the North Koreans to carve out a fine third, with Ja threading through a lovely reverse pass for Ri Hae-Yon to crash home her fifth goal of the tournament. That put the Korea DPR No10 level with Castellanos and Lorena Navarro at the top of the tournament's scoring charts and she will now have a chance to add to that tally in a final against either Spain or Japan.
Live Your Goals Player of the Match: Sung Hyang-Sim (PRK)