Unification News for August 2003

PSV wins the 2003 Peace Cup Korea

PSV kicked off for the 2003 Peace Cup Korea final against Olympique Lyon. A Japanese referee, assistant referees from Malaysia and Vietnam and a fourth official from Thailand were in charge. PSV fielded a team in which Robben and Park were partners up front.

Lucius occupied a position on the left flank, while Van Bommel was mostly active on the right wing. It was raining cats and dogs here in Seoul; yet the pitch was in a fairly good condition, but the rain has most likely prevented many spectators from going to the stadium. On 7 minutes Diarra got the first opportunity, but he headed wide off the post. PSV played their passing football and started many moves, but they always had to be alert for the counter attacks of the technically well-skilled French players. The pace of the game was pretty low. On 20 minutes PSV were given a penalty, when Robben was hacked down in the box, which interrupted an eye-catching forward run. Captain Van Bommel converted from the spot by blasting the ball home straight into the net; 0-1. Violeau was shown a yellow card for a foul. It had stopped raining meanwhile and Kezman started his warming-up, when de Jong was on the ground. On 32 minutes an Essien effort missed the goal by some inches. Lyon piled up the pressure in the last fifteen minutes of the first half. PSV on their turn could play on the counter and two minutes into half time Robben brought out a fine save form keeper Coupet, who could push away his shot for a corner. Before the corner was taken, Hoogstrate came on for Colin and Lucius took up Colin's place in the heart of defence. Essien was booked for a clumsy tackle on Lee and then the final whistle for the first 45 minutes went.

During the break the rain came pelting down and the condition of the pitch deteriorated considerably. Captain van Bommel was the first to receive a second half yellow card for dissent, when he kicked the ball away. On 50 minutes PSV earned a corner Ooijer headed just wide off the post. In the meantime the pitch was soaking with rain and some pools were visible, which made it hard for the players to produce good football. Robben was fouled by Edmilson, but neither the referee nor his assistants had seen anything. Van der Schaaf was less lucky, after he had committed a slight foul on Violeau. The best player in the Lyon team, Govou, had to be taken off on 57 minutes after he had sustained an injury. Kezman got a standing ovation from the crowd when he took off his shirt. Waterreus could only stop a dangerous effort from substitute Pernambucano in two times. Kezman came on for De Jong, after an hour's play. Lyon were dominating in this stage of the match and PSV found it hard to kick the ball away from the pools (the state of the pitch was worst at the end where PSV were defending). Robben charged down on the left, outran his marker Deflandre and saw Coupet pull off a fine save. The Korean seemed to enjoy the water ballet performance, but playing football in these circumstances was out of the question. Kezman and Diarra nearly scored an own goal, when he misjudged the cross from the PSV striker. Robben did score a goal for PSV soon after that, but he was adjudged to have been offside. It must have been by a few millimeters! Goalkeeper Coupet made another crucial save from a Robben free kick.

Actually the match should have been cancelled: the pitch looked more like a swimming pool by now. Van Bommel set the example, when he was fouled. His imitation of the famous Dutch swimmer Pieter van den Hoogenband was excellent. PSV got another opportunity, when Kezman squared the ball back for Robben, but again the keeper parried his shot. In the final minute Robben set up Kezman, but the prolific top scorer was a yard too late. After a few minutes injury tine, the referee called it a day and PSV had won the 2003 Peace Cup Korea!

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