Draw keeps Saudis third
South Korea and Saudi Arabia played to an entertaining 0-0 draw in their Asian World Cup qualifying match here Wednesday.
South Korea entered the match already assured of a berth in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
The home side remain undefeated with four wins and three draws. The result left Saudi Arabia in third place in Group B.
The Saudis and North Korea both have 11 points, but North Korea have the edge in goal difference.
North Korea travel to Saudi Arabia on June 17 for both nations' final qualification match.
It was South Korea that played as if they needed the victory.
The best South Korean chance came in the 55th minute. Kim Dong-Jin crossed from left for Park Chu-Young. The AS Monaco forward soared over three defenders but headed the ball just over the crossbar.
After starting out as the aggressor and putting the South Korean defence on its heels over the first 20 minutes, the Saudis couldn't muster up much offence the rest of the way.
In the 60th minute, Nasser Al-Shamrani broke away from defence and forced goalkeeper Lee Woon-Jae to make a tough diving save from close range.
It was all South Korea from then on.
In the 39th, Ki Sung-Yueng pounced on a Cho Won-Hee cross and goalkeeper Waleed Abdullah punched it out.
In the next minute, Lee Keun-Ho got his right foot on the ball in the scramble in front of the goal, and Abdullah got just enough of the ball to push it out of bounds.
South Korea didn't let up in the next half.
Park Chu-Young's curling free kick in the 59th was grabbed by Abdullah. In the 71st, Lee Chung-Yong demonstrated some nifty foot work to fool Saheb Al Abdullah just outside the box but shot wide left of the goal.
Three minutes later, Kim Hyung-Il's header off a corner was barely kicked out by keeper Waleed Abdullah, who also stopped Yang Dong-Hyen's shot on the rebound.
Saudi Arabia played the last dozen minutes a man down, after Ahmed Otaif was sent off on his second yellow card.