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Argentina and South Korea book last 16 spots
23/06/2010  by Telegraph.co.uk
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Diego Maradona's World Cup adventure will last a little longer after Argentina joined South Korea in the World Cup last 16.

Maradona's side maintained their 100 percent record with a 2-0 win over Greece to ensure they meet Mexico in the second round.

Lionel Messi, Argentina captain for the night, admitted he was thrilled to be honoured by Maradona, whose coaching reputation grows more gilded with every passing victory.

"It was a unique experience - something very special," said Messi. "As soon as I knew about it it was just great, unique."

South Korea coach Huh Jung-moo was relieved to see his side make the knock-out stages after they were held to a 2-2 draw by Nigeria in Durban.

Kalu Uche opened the scoring in the 12th minute and almost doubled Nigeria's lead shortly after the half-hour mark but his powerful strike smashed off the near post.

Lee Jung-soo equalised in the 38th minute and then Park Chu-young's free-kick early in the second half turned the match on its head.

South Korea shot themselves in the foot when substitute Kim Nam-il brought down Chinedu Obasi inside the area midway through the second half. Ayegbeni Yakubu, having missed the easiest of tap-ins seconds earlier, made amends by restoring parity from the penalty spot.

The outcome sealed second spot in the group for Korea and a second-round match against Uruguay on Saturday in Port Elizabeth.

"It was a difficult game and I am very happy that we have reached the next stage of the competition," said Huh. "During the match we conceded the first goal and we thought that then Nigeria struck the post.

"But our players managed to maintain their cool and equalise. When we were leading the game, we allowed the penalty which we should have avoided. Those were the critical moments."

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