Jordan advances to first Asian Cup semifinals; Australia faces South Korea

Son Heung-min gave South Korea a dramatic 2-1 win over Australia after extra time in the quarterfinals of the Asian Cup on Friday.

Victory kept alive South Korea’s hopes of a third Asian Cup title and a first since 1960. It set up a semifinal against Jordan, which reached the last four for the first time by beating Tajikistan, 1-0.

Craig Goodwin volleyed Australia ahead in the first half at Al Janoub Stadium. Hwang Hee-chan’s stoppage-time penalty forced extra time. Son’s spectacular free kick in the 104th minute secured the win.

Australia almost took the lead after 20 minutes when Jo Hyun-woo could only parry Goodwin’s powerful shot from the edge of the area straight into the path of Conor Metcalfe, who shot wide.

Hwang then found the back of the net with an easy tap-in but Seol Young-woo, who provided the pull back from the left, was judged offside.

Australia moved ahead three minutes before the break. South Korea gave the ball away and Goodwin coolly volleyed Nathaniel Atkinson’s looping right cross at the far post past Jo.

Despite enjoying the majority of possession in the first half, South Korea did not manage a shot on goal.

Australia, the 2015 champion, should have extended its lead eight minutes into the new half. Jo made a fine double save from Martin Boyle’s header and follow-up shot, and when the ball spilled to Mitchell Duke, the forward fired over with the goal at his mercy.

South Korea started to push forward, sending cross after cross into a crowded penalty area, but it was Australia that had better chances late in the game.

Then Son was brought down in the area in the fourth minute of injury time by Lewis Miller and Hwang fired home the penalty to take the game into extra time.

Hwang almost scored again five minutes in with a low shot on the turn that was superbly saved at the near post by Mat Ryan, who quickly got up to keep out a Lee Kang-in header.

Son sealed the win by curling a free kick from the left corner of the penalty area into the top corner past Ryan’s despairing dive.

The situation worsened for Australia moments later after Aiden O’Neill’s yellow card for a foul on Hwang was changed to red after a video review.

Earlier, Jordan defeated Tajikistan thanks to an own-goal from Vahdat Hanonov midway through the second half in Al-Rayyan.

The deadlock at Ahmad bin Ali Stadium was broken after 66 minutes when a corner kick bounced off the chest of Tajikistan’s Hanonov and into his own net.

Mousa Tamari had the chance to extend Jordan’s lead, but the wing shot just wide from inside the area.

That spurred Tajikistan into action. Alisher Shukurov’s fierce drive from outside the area was saved by Yazeed Abulaila, but the central Asian team failed to put Jordan under any more serious pressure.

Reporting by The Associated Press.

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