South Korea coach Shin Tae-yong admitted that the 2-0 victory over defending champions Germany in World Cup left him feeling “a little bit empty”.
The team entered the match with no chance of qualifying following two defeats against Sweden and Mexico.
A pair of late goals from Kim Young-gwon and Son Heung-min, coupled with a superb performance from goalkeeper Jo Hyeon-woo helped South Korea create one of the greatest shocks in the history of the tournament.
However, Sweden’s 3-0 win over Mexico also meant South Korea could no longer advance through the last 16 for the first time since 2010.
“I feel great but at the same time I feel a little bit empty, so I feel a little bit ambivalent,” Shin said, as quoted on the FIFA website after the match.
“Yesterday we said there was only a one per cent chance and so I told my players it really was a last-ditch effort for them and I told them that they had to fight until the end.
“Germany are the defending champions and No1 in the FIFA Ranking, so I thought about what mistakes Germany might make, because they probably felt they would be able to beat us – that’s what everybody thought. I thought we could use that as a reverse strategy and that has really hit the nail on the head.”