South Korea vs Belgium: Thibault Courtois relieved to have qualified for second round as Belgium prepare for high-flying United States

Goalkeeper feels that the performance in the 1-0 victory was good enough and will now begin preparations for Tuesday's last-16 tie

Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois breathed a sigh of relief after his team scored a late goal to beat South Korea at the World Cup.

Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen gave the Red Devils a 1-0 triumph on Thursday in Sao Paulo to clinch first place in Group H and set up a meeting with the United States in the round of 16.

South Korea went into the game with a chance of advancing themselves but were denied by Courtois and the Belgian defensive wall.

"The Koreans had to score and it was a complicated game," Courtois said to http://www.dhnet.be. "It was important for me and for the team not to concede a goal."

Belgium had already secured a place in the next round and coach Marc Wilmots made seven changes to the side that beat Russia 1-0.

"There were many changes to the team but I thought we did well in the first half, with the exception of the red card," said Courtois, who won the Spanish Primera Liga with Atletico Madrid in the 2013-14 campaign while on loan from Chelsea.

 

The win was all the more gratifying considering Belgium had to play with 10 men from the 37th minute after Porto midfielder Steven Defour was sent off for a reckless challenge on Kim Shin-wook.

Belgium held their composure and showed plenty of resolve to beat Hong Myung-bo's side.

"In the second half, it was essential to defend well and to score on the counter attack," Courtois said. "Now we will have to prepare in the best way possible for the game against the United States.

"The important thing was to qualify."

Belgium make it three from three

Belgium have scored four goals and given away one in the group stages heading into Tuesday's match against the United States.

Jan Vertonghen celebrates scoring for Belgium Jan Vertonghen celebrates scoring for Belgium Wilmots is delighted with his team's performances at the tournament so far.

"We knew all games were going to be tough at the World Cup," the 45-year-old said. "But even with 10 men against South Korea we still pushed forward and won the game.

"I particularly liked the mentality that my players showed when we were down 10 men.

"Despite the initial shock after Steven's sending off, the players stayed in the game.

"These guys are really hungry.

"There was a lot of pressure for my players ahead of this tournament in Brazil but I think with this nine out of nine (points), we have responded well."

News
A 1930 image of the Karl Albrecht Spiritousen and Lebensmittel shop, Essen. The shop was opened by Karl and Theo Albrecht’s mother; the brothers later founded Aldi
people
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmA cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Arts and Entertainment
Flora Spencer-Longhurst as Lavinia, William Houston as Titus Andronicus and Dyfan Dwyfor as Lucius
theatreThe Shakespeare play that proved too much for more than 100 people
News
exclusivePunk icon Viv Albertine on Sid Vicious, complacent white men, and why free love led to rape
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Stir crazy: Noel Fielding in 'Luxury Comedy 2: Tales from Painted Hawaii'
comedyAs ‘Luxury Comedy’ returns, Noel Fielding on why mainstream success scares him and what the future holds for 'The Boosh'
Life and Style
Flow chart: Karl Landsteiner discovered blood types in 1900, yet scientists have still not come up with an explanation for their existence
lifeAll of us have one. Yet even now, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Arts and Entertainment
'Weird Al' Yankovic, or Alfred Matthew, at the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival Screening of
musicHis latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do our experts think he’s missed out?
Sport
New Real Madrid signing James Rodríguez with club president Florentino Perez
sportColombian World Cup star completes £63m move to Spain
Travel
Hotel Tour d’Auvergne in Paris launches pay-what-you-want
travelIt seems fraught with financial risk, but the policy has its benefits
Arts and Entertainment
booksThe best children's books for this summer
Life and Style
News to me: family events were recorded in the personal columns
techFamily events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped that
Caption competition
Caption competition

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn