Can England get off to a winning start in Group C against USA? Simon Hopper previews the World Cup betting.

South Korea saw off a feeble Greece side 2-0 in the Group B opener thanks to goals from Lee Jung-Soo and Park Ji-Sung.

The result extended a miserable World Cup record for Greece, who have yet to score a goal or earn a point in the history of the competition.

On the evidence of today’s encounter they may well return home from South Africa empty handed.

It took Huh Jung-moo’s side just seven minutes to go ahead in the Group B encounter when the unmarked Lee met Ki Sung-Yueng’s swinging free-kick and volleyed it home from close range.

It could have been 2-0 with 28 minutes gone but defender Avraam Papadopoulos got in a last-ditch challenge on striker Park Chu-Young.

Greece had started the game brightly, Torosidis firing wide when he met skipper Georgios Karagounis’ second-minute corner with an instinctive half-volley, but it was largely downhill from there.

Korea were putting on a vibrant display with strikers Park Chu-young and Yeom Ki-hun, supported by a lively midfield quartet in which Manchester United’s Park Ji-Sung was prominent, keeping the Greek defence on their toes.

They increased their lead within seven minutes of the restart when Park took advantage of Loukas Vyntra’s miscontrol to race through on goal, before calmly dispatching his shot into the corner of the net.

Greece coach Otto Rehhagel, who had replaced Karagounis with Christos Patsatzoglou at the break, withdrew Charisteas and Georgios Samaras and introduced Dimitrios Salpingidis and Pantelis Kapetanos, as he sought a toehold in the game. However it was to no avail.

Despite a late flurry of corners, Greece never really threatened and South Korea remained dangerous on the break and could have extended their lead but for some wasteful finishing.

With difficult-looking fixtures against Nigeria and Argentina to come, Greece’s prospects of reaching the knockout stages look exceedingly slim.

South Korea 2-0 Greece

Scorers: Lee, 7, Park, 52

Half-time: 1-0

South Korea: 18 Jung, 04 Cho, 12 Lee, 14 Lee, 22 Cha, 07 Park, 08 Kim, 10 Park (Seung-Youl Lee, 87), 16 Ki (Kim, 74), 17 Lee (Kim, 90+1), 19 Yeom

Greece: 12 Tzorvas, 02 Seitaridis, 08 Papadopoulos, 11 Vyntra, 15 Torosidis,
06 Tziolis, 10 Karagounis (Patsatzoglou, 46), 21 Katsouranis, 07 Samaras (Salpigidis, 59)
09 Charisteas (Kapetanos, 61), 17 Gekas.

Attendance: 31,500

Referee: Michael Hester.

Can England get off to a winning start in Group C against USA? Simon Hopper previews the World Cup betting.

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