Quotes: Korea DPR-Japan
Sin Jong-Bok, Korea DPR coach No words can express my feelings at winning this tournament. I had great trust in my players and I know that they picked up wonderful experience over the course of this competition. Japan are one of the top teams in the world and playing against such a top-level team meant the game was extremely competitive. We'd had experience of playing against Japan before in the AFC Championship final and the level of play in this game was much higher. Even though they lost, the Japanese team played to a very high level and I commend them for that. But we managed to get the win and I think mental strength was our major strength. Japan's technical level is higher than ours, I admit that, and they missed some golden opportunities. But they have some weaknesses too and we were able to capitalise on those. Our team play and mental strength was what helped us win this tournament.
Naoki Kusunose, Japan coach
Despite the result, I must say that the performance of my players was very satisfying. Of course there were some mistakes, but I really believed we would score, especially as we got closer to the end of the game. The team tried many different ways to break through but Korea DPR played very well and we must acknowledge their good performance. It's a tough experience but this will make my players stronger for their next tournament. Unfortunately we came up just short, but I think this generation offers great hope for the future and we want to keep on improving our football in Japan. We entered the game with confident but we respected Korea DPR, and I think the game was of a good level. We missed a lot of chances but I know my players tried very hard and I have no regrets. As for the penalty miss, I would stress that the result is always the head coach's responsibility. These things happen in football and, as I said, I take responsibility for the outcome.