Uzbekistan’s Soccer Player Punches Korean Opponent

by STEVE HAN | @steve_han

Korean soccer fans couldn’t believe what they had just seen on TV. During a match between South Korea and Uzbekistan’s national under-22 teams, a player from Uzbekistan inexplicably began hurling punches at Korea’s rightback Sim Sang-min.

The incident took place at the King’s Cup, which was held in Thailand this year. The game nearly turned into a one-sided bout when Sim put in a fair challenge on Tohirjon Shamshitdinov while the Uzbekistani was on the ground trying to protect the ball. After Sim made contact, Shamshitdinov suddenly jumped up and punched the Korean player in the face three times. Obviously, Shamshitdinov was sent off with a straight red card.

In addition, another Uzbekistani player, Jaloliddin Masharipov, received a red card in the first half of the game after launching a studs-first “kung-fu kick” into the chest of South Korea’s Kang Sang-woo.

The Korean Soccer Association has since filed an official complaint to international soccer’s governing body, FIFA, to impose further sanctions on Shamshitdinov and his team. The game ended in a 1-0 win for South Korea.

Uzbekistan’s soccer association also issued an apology on the following day, saying that it has “reprimanded the national team and the coaching staff” and that “there will be repercussions” on the team for its behavior.

Since the incident, Shamshitdinov has reportedly been dropped from the national team and returned to Uzbekistan after visiting the South Korean team’s camp to apologize to Sim, according to OSEN.

You can watch the two outrageous assaults below: