KUALA LUMPUR (Xinhua) – Lebanon’s Al Ahed FC beat 4.25 SC from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) 1-0 at the Kuala Lumpur Football Stadium here on Monday to claim the AFC Cup.
The DPRK team put on a strong showing throughout the first half of Asia’s second-tier club competition, but suffered a setback when goalkeeper An Tae-song was sent off for denying a goal scoring opportunity for forward Ahmed Zreik.
Despite being reduced to 10-men, the DPRK team fend off the attacks of their Middle Eastern counterparts, ending the first half without a goal.
The second half saw a huge effort by both teams to break the stalemate, but DPRK replacement keeper Son Tae-song failed to stop a shot from Lebanese midfielder Issa Yakobo, who scored the first goal of the match at the 74th minute.
Overall the Lebanese team kept possession of the ball more often and made more attempts at shooting, but the DPRK footballers played aggressively and effectively to the end.
Currently, the competition is played primarily between clubs from nations and regions that did not receive direct qualifying slots in the top-tier AFC Champions League, based on the AFC Club Competitions Ranking.
The match had been initially scheduled for the DPRK capital of Pyongyang before being moved to Shanghai, China and finally Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with the match being played two days later than planned.