This weekend, the U.S. national men’s soccer team plays South Korea at the StubHub Center in Carson. Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. PDT, and the match will be broadcast live on ESPN2, WatchESPN, ESPN Deportes Radio and UniMas. Fans can get live match updates via Twitter @ussoccer.
The match is a friendly, but a lot is at stake for the U.S. team, which has high hopes in this summer’s World Cup in Brazil.
This week, the U.S. named its latest 22-player roster and returned back from a two-week trip to Brazil, part of the team’s preparation for the World Cup. Their first round of games are in what's considered "the pool of death" with Germany, Ghana and Portugal.
Many eyes are also on South Korea’s team, which is hoping to repeat its dramatic run all the way to the semifinals in the 2002 World Cup, which South Korea co-hosted.
"When you go back to the group stages of that tournament in 2002, that was when Korea beat Poland 2-0 in the first game of the World Cup. That was their first World Cup win since 1956, so initially getting one win at the World Cup was the goal," said Steve Han, reporter with KoreAm Journal, on Take Two. "Anything more than that was the bonus. So when they beat Spain that was just unbelievable."
The entire country was elated by that run in 2002, but can the team hit their stride this time around? The game on Saturday is just for fun, and won't decide any team rankings. But Los Angeles has the largest Korean community outside of Korea, so it's going to be a big game nonetheless.
"For Korean Americans in L.A. it's not often that you host a team that represents Korea, and World Cup is obviously the biggest sporting events in Korea," said Han. "So it's kind of a community event for the Korean people, it's something that's going to bring the community together."
Where To Watch The Game in Koreatown:
While most sports bars in the city will be airing the game, Koreatown is an especially good spot to watch this match. Here are a list of places that will be airing the game:
Toe Bang (3465 W 6th St, Ste 110 Los Angeles, CA 90020)
Café Nandarang (3815 W 6th St. Los Angeles, CA 90020)
The Novel Café (3760 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90010)
Café Bleu, (3470 W 6th St. Los Angeles, CA 90020)
Biergarten, (206 N Western Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90004)
Hite Kwang Jang, (3839 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90010)
OB Bear,( 3002 W 7th St., Los Angeles, CA 90005)
The Koreatown Galleria, (3250 W Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90006)