North Korea's participation at the World Cup for the first time since 1966 prompted plenty of unkind speculation about their closeted lives in the secretive communist state and the likely punishments awaiting them back home if they failed to perform. South Korean-born Jong gave the team a human face, his tears during the national anthem reminding everyone watching quite how much the tournament meant to the country. His performance in the narrow 2-1 loss to Brazil in North Korea's opening game proved that the minnows were capable of competing with anyone.
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