As you would probably expect, it's not good when your coach leaves the team immediately before the biggest three matches of your life. Of course, it's also not good when your team is Togo, so there's that.
Anyway, we kick off today's live blog tripleheader with Korea Republic — or South Korea, however you wish to refer to it — against Togo, the second game of the World Cup to be played in Frankfurt. (England's 1-0 win over Paraguay was the first one.)
All week, weekend impresario The Mighty MJD is taking you through the 9 a.m. games, and his soccer stylings are after the jump. Feel free to follow along, add your own comments and email him with your thoughts. And enjoy!
90:00: Alright, I'm out of here. Enjoy the other games today... Brazil/Croatia should be fun. Have a good one.
90:00: And that'll do it. Korea is your winner, 2-1. You gotta feel bad for Togo. They played well, their defense was pretty immaculate for most of the game. But one huge mistake costs them.
90:00: I am sad.
90:00: Struggling to even get possession of the ball here... foul committed, and a free kick here for Korea. Less than a minute to go for Togo.
90:00: Three minutes of stoppage time here... three more minutes for Togo to get an equalizer.
89:18: It's evidently a very bad idea to take a 1-0 lead in a game that MJD is live-blogging.
88:24: Not looking good for Togo here. A free kick flies just over the foot of Adebayor... goal kick for Korea.
85:43: Togo continues to get a little more offense than they probably should be getting right now, against a team that's a man up, and should be in full defensive mode.
84:52: Corner for Togo... can't get a head to it. Korea turns it back the other way very quickly, but a nice job to break up the play.
81:58: A Park cross comes in just behind three sets of waiting Korean feet.
80:22 A long Kader Toure blast goes just a little bit wide. Evidently, Korea isn't real good at you-can't-have-the-ball mode.
79:23: Tommy Smyth is an ESPN Mobile subscriber. So he's the one.
77:25: Togo gets it anyway, and with some nifty passing, creates another chance for themselves. They committ a little bit of a desperation foul at the end of the attack, however.
77:00 And Korea is in full you-can't-have-the-ball mode.
74:20: And they almost put another one in immediately afterwards. Very nearly went through the wickets of the Togo keeper. Togo is reeling.
71:46: GOOOOOAL! Korea gets on the board again, and finally takes the lead. Right on the edge of the box, a fantastic shot. He took a pass went against the grain, found some room, and just labeled one for the opposite top corner. Beautiful goal. Ahn Jung-Hwan.
70:39: A Korean header goes just wide. We've got some up-and-down action here, ladies and gentlemen.
68:42: Another chance for Togo on a long pass ahead... just couldn't control it well enough on the first touch.
67:10: Togo continues to create offense... so much for my analysis. Korea got away with a pretty blatant foul there, too. Kim Nam-Il checks into the game for Korea.
65:27: Park puts a shot on goal at the end of a nice possession for Korea.
64:27: It's Togo again... Adebayor creates another pretty good chance, and again, it goes over the goal. Our Togolese brothers don't know the meaning of the word quit.
62:50: And somehow, a chance for Togo. A great chance, ever. They had the ball at their feet in the box, in great position... a follow-up shot sails over the bar. Man... that was a hell of an opportunity.
61:39: Another close call for Korea... a cross just missed the diving head of Cho Jae-Jin.
60:04: Ludovic Assemoassa is down for Togo. Here comes the stretcher. I think he hurt one of his asses.
58:32: Korea's just firing away now. It's like a shooting range out there. And I think we can pretty much rule out the chances of any Togolese offense here.
57:01: Kinda sucks that as soon as this game got exciting, Togo lost the lead... makes it very difficult to enjoy this game.
55:58: Corner for Togo here. Nothing doing, and a quick Korean counter attack. They get a corner of their own... Lee Young-Pyo gets upended in the box, but no call.
53:47: And they score. Dammit. Lee Chun-Soo buried it, and... that's not good for Togo. Huge mistake by Abalo. I mean, that just killed them. They have no momentum, it's tied, and they're a man down.
52:43: Red card on Jean-Paul Abalo. Park was loose, heading towards the box, and Jean-Paul Abalo took him down. He's been sent off. Korea is now on a permanent power play, and they've got a free kick in great position here.
51:36: I'm sorry. That was wrong.
50:50: Much more of an attack here for the Koreans. Another decent look at it, and another poor shot. They just still seem a little bit off... perhaps they had a bad batch of horse for breakfast.
48:29: This is a little more like it... if Shep Messing had been calling his game, I think I'd have killed myself in the 12th minute.
47:32: It's Kader Toure no a nice run... that was nice. He abused a Korean defender and put a good shot on goal. Nice stop by the Korean keeper. The corner isn't converted.
46:39: Ji-Sun Park gets a look at the goal, and blasts it well wide. A strike of no real conviction there. Sorry. Tommy Smyth is rubbing off on me.
45:52: Korean guy almost gets kicked in the mustache. Togo certainly isn't shy about playing physical defense.
45:00: Alright, we're back. And let's discuss for a minute which ESPN guys have hit on Julie Foudy. Stuart Scott is a certainty. And I think Berman may have pulled the "You're with me, Umbros" routine with her. Rece Davis, probably too shy, but I think he wants to.
45:00: That'll do it for the first half. Freakin' Togo is winning a World Cup game. Back with you shortly...
45:00: A bit of a Korean flurry here towards the end, but the Togo defense is dealing with everything. Another corner here... again, a bad one. Cleared by Togo.
44:45: The good news is that there's now a team in the World Cup that looks just as lethargic as the United States looked yesterday. If Korea loses to Togo, all the sudden, we're not so embarrassing.
44:14: Korea gets another corner... this one is wasted. They go to the far post, but well over any available Korean noggins.
41:01:: Free kick, just outside the box now for Togo... pretty weak call in my opinion, but hey, it happened. The shot... is a good one, but is saved. Lee Woon-Jae with an excellent save, keeping Korea alive in this one. The ensuing header is knocked wide.
40:13: Korean shot on goal hits the Togo keeper directly in the tummy.
38:39: Of course, Togo's not putting together a lot of offense, either. Their goal was a very sudden thing. I think long, sustained attacks are going to be pretty rare today.
37:33: Cho Jae-Jin fires one over the bar for Korea. They can't find their groove today.
35:49: Awww... adorable Korean child in the stands is upset.
34:34: Corner here for Korea. First of the game. Headed on and blocked by a Togo guy, and then knocked into touch. I don't know how these little Korean fellows got their heads to it, but they did.
33:43: Otto Pfister's jeans go halfway down his ass. I think he watches a lot of rap videos.
32:15: It was Kader Toure on the goal, and not a second too soon. Thank goodness... perhaps Korea will try now.
30:40:: GOOOOOAL! Oh, Togo's on the board, my friend. Great pass ahead gets a Togo guy loose in the box, just ahead of a couple of Koreans, and he slides one in with a beautiful strike. Holy thunder. Togo has a World Cup lead.
29:04: Hey, a Chan Ho Park mention. And another one for ESPN News personality Michael Kim.
26:53: I'm not going to lie to you... this game sucks. Korea can't put anything together.
24:16: The shot on the free kick goes harmlessly wide.
23:35: Romao picks up a yellow card on the Togo side. The commentators are pretty much saying that he sucks at soccer, but tries hard. I can respect that.
22:15: I think Togo's making it a point to get a body on Ji-Sun Park, and not in any sort of a polite way. He's spent a lot of time on the grass.
21:25: Seems like the Korean team has an indordinate amount of mustaches. I didn't know that South Korea took such pride in their culture of mustache-cultivation.
19:32: Foul on a Togo guy, who just jams an elbow into Park's back. Free kick, handled by the Togo keeper, who's sporting a high-top fade.
16:03: A shot for Korea gets blocked. Ji-Sun Park with a weak little chance there. Seems like goals are going to be rare today.
15:16: Adebayor crosses one into the box, well over the head of Kader Toure, who dove like Greg Lougainis.
13:13: Koren head coach Dick Advocaat has stolen Avery Johnson's nickname, "The Little General." I don't think there's any relation, though.
11:48: A long ball into the Togo box is headed away after a slightly mistimed run. They haven't done anything, but Togo isn't nearly as embarrassing as I'd been led to believe they were. For a team with no head coach for most of the week, they're pretty damn good.
9:02: Togo's Kater Toure fires a shot from inside the box well over the net. Best shot so far. This is not quite the same as yesterday's Japan/Australia game.
7:43: Hey, it's the ref's 14th wedding anniversary. I believe 14 is the yellow card anniversary.
6:24: Somewhat odd that a game between Korea and Togo features two coaches as white as Wilford Brimley.
5:05: Not a lot of action thus far. Perhaps a slight edge to Korea, but no one's really threatened.
3:56: Lee Chun-Soo (and again, I'm going to seriously mangle some names today, and I apologize in advance) is the rare blonde Asian guy with a black, wispy, mustache. You have to admire that.
0:00: We're underway. Korea awarded a free kick, and it's blocked into touch.
0:00: Otta Pfister's going with the top-three-buttons-undone look, with the gold cross hanging down there. All the talk about prostitution in Germany this week. I think the Pfister is taking advantage.
0:00: SWEET. Foreign commentators today. If I knew their names, I'd be happy to tell you how much I enjoy them, but... really, to me they're just accents.
0:00: Young Boys, of course, being a Swiss soccer team.
0:00: Togo midfielder Yao Aziawonou plays with Young Boys.
0:00: And hey, the Togo coach is named "Pfister," and if you don't think I'm going to the "Pfister" well often today, you don't know me that well. You probably know by now, too, that he quit on his team a few days ago, and then yesterday, agreed to come back.
0:00: Some things you should know before we get started: The star for South Korea is Ji-Sun Park, who plays for Manchester United. For Togo, it's Emmanuel Adebayor, who plays for Arsenal and bagged 11 goals in 12 quailfying games.