S. Korean fans angry at team’s early exit

Published 1:27 am Thursday, July 3, 2014

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Disappointed South Korean fans have expressed their anger toward the national team as it made its return home following an early exit from the World Cup in Brazil.

Local media showed clips of a fan throwing Korean traditional taffy candy, known as ‘yeot,’ at the players who had lined up for a team photo at the international airport in Incheon on Monday. The thrower was heard as shouting “eat yeot”; a common curse in South Korea.

Other fans also held up a banner designed in funeral style that said “South Korean soccer is dead!!”

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South Korea finished last in Group H at the World Cup after defeats against Belgium and Algeria, and a draw with Russia. South Korea was the last Asian team knocked out of the World Cup, leaving the continent without any representatives in the knockout stages.

South Korea has been to nine World Cups, more than any other Asian team, but it has failed to build on its performance as co-host of the 2002 World Cup, when it reached the semifinals.

Coach Hong Myung-bo, who was captain in 2002, apologized to fans for the team’s disappointing World Cup performance.