Feb 10

Pop World Cup 2010: Group B – Greece 1 South Korea 1

FT//24 comments • 1,230 views

Our first Group B clash is between Greece, managed by Johan of Birdseed’s Tunedown, and South Korea, managed by Chris of Gutteral. Greece made it to the quarter-finals of Europop 2008, South Korea however couldn’t make it out of their group at the last Pop World Cup. With tough matches to come for both sides they’ll be looking for a strong start.

As ever, anyone can vote in the poll below the cut – this one will end at midnight on Wednesday 17th.

GREECE: Georgios Mais – “Adiaforeis” The manager says: “With a team as versatile as Greece, adaptation and clear tactical direction becomes a necessity. Against the presumably technical and spirited Koreans we have to hit hard with the team’s full physical strength, energetic and hard-pressing; dogged, as the genre name (skiladiko=doghouse) suggests. These tactics may be considered both vulgar and (due to some appropriately Balkan cross-border hook-stealing) Bulgar, but hopefully this initial assault will be enough to force a convincing first victory, giving us some peace for the tough matches ahead.”

SOUTH KOREA: 4Minute – “Muzik” The manager says: “The intro to this track sounds like an evil robot whirring to life. And the single release featured its own prelude, which steals the synth melody from “The Boys of Summer” without showing Don Henley pity or remorse. Ruthless, efficient and a little bit arrogant: doing his dance to this would be tough, but I can only think of Drogba.”

Group B Match 1: Which track did you prefer?

  • South Korea: 4Minutes 57%
  • Greece: Georgios Mais 43%

Total Voters: 68

Poll closes: 17 Feb 2010 @ 23:59

Loading ... Loading ...

Commentary Box Analysis: “Tactics that work well back home can often be found out on the international stage. The Greeks have got some talented players but their game seems based around knocking it forward to the big lad. The Koreans on the other hand use zonal autotune to an extent which might horrify purists but can make for a very effective pressing style of play. Plenty of incident in this match and you’d expect a busy afternoon for the ref.”

Coming Up: A peach of a game tomorrow – Argentina-Nigeria – and on Monday we open group C with one of the great pop fixtures, England v USA.


  1. 1
    jeff w on 11 Feb 2010 #

    Another request to flag the mp3 file size next to the download link please.

  2. 2
    Tom on 11 Feb 2010 #

    The played/dl links appear automatically but I’ll remember to put it in the blurbs.

  3. 3
    admin on 11 Feb 2010 #

    i might be able to add the filesize to the download link ‘popup’ text. soon.

  4. 4
    Kat but logged out innit on 11 Feb 2010 #

    Some interesting play here but some silly errors from both sides. Ultimately I think Greece’s defence is better than South Korea’s strikers.

  5. 5
    Pete Baran on 11 Feb 2010 #

    Neither of these inspire me with much confidence for the longevity of both teams though I will always tend to favour any team that plays a bit of a local game. The Greek track starts really well, conjuring up the Super World where Mario is Greek, but is let down by a classic Eurovision duff vocal. More bouze, less bouzouki. On the otherhand the K-Pop is rampant with its overuse of ver tune and just seems too frenetic for its own good. ie like a poor Cheryl Cole album track.

    Difficult to call, but I am less actively annoyed by the Greek track so that just gets it.

  6. 6
    Adrian on 11 Feb 2010 #

    I really like both of these.

    I’m a sucker for that Greek laïkó pop sound, but I think South Korea edge it for me as it’s meta-pop madness and has that whirring robot sound.

  7. 7
    Steve Mannion on 11 Feb 2010 #

    Yes auto-tune FD aside South Korea are throwing enough at a stoic yet rote Greek defence here to grab a win for me. There’s a sneaky French influence in SK’s play (specifically Justice ‘Genesis’) but curious to see what else both sides have up their sleeves.

  8. 8
    mm on 11 Feb 2010 #

    The SK track is good, although there are a lot of k-pop tracks from 2009 that theoretically could’ve outplayed it, and maybe they’re yet to come. It’s still solid enough to take this — the greek track is pleasant but perhaps arrogantly casual. I hope some of the real big shots are coming from the SK team in later matches.

  9. 9
    Matt DC on 11 Feb 2010 #

    Hmmm, this won’t go down as a classic but I suspect neither team will care much if they get three points on the board. South Korea are really throwing the kitchen sink at Greece – only problem is they miss. Their hyper-compressed route one autobosh feels a bit cynical and somewhat charmless. The Greek track isn’t my cup of tea particularly, and I suspect similar tactics may have worked better with a stronger selection, but I’ll take their guilelessness over South Korea nonetheless.

  10. 10
    Tom on 11 Feb 2010 #

    I think I underestimated the Greeks. It’s Route One stuff to be sure, but that rushin’ bouzouki riff is doing it for me: pinpoint crosses, always the same but one of them’s going to find the big man’s head eventually and it might just be enough.

  11. 11
    mm on 11 Feb 2010 #

    Trivia: 4minute are featured on the remix of Amerie’s ‘Heard Em All’ on her SK version of the album. Amerie is, of course, half korean and growing up it was her first language.

  12. 12
    lex on 12 Feb 2010 #

    Neither a classic for me; going with GRE as it’s pleasant enough on its own terms, whereas KOR is both too much and not enough and just makes me want to listen to superior autotuned bosh like, IDK, the Paradiso Girls or something.

  13. 13
    koganbot on 12 Feb 2010 #

    I like these sides quite well; the Greeks start with a terrific picked-and-strummed [whatever stringed instrument it is] pushing right up the middle, and a smoothie with a lot of depth upfront. Thing is, the South Koreans figure them out thirty minutes into the half and the Greeks don’t adjust. Meanwhile the K-Poppers wind up and go with what superficially looks like the standard int’l dance-r&b formation, but by integrating in their own inimitable whir they baffle the opposition (also baffle me, since this is obviously K-Pop rather than the standard dance-r&b AutoTune amalgam, but I can’t put my finger on why; maybe it’s that J.R. Rotem didn’t produce it). I vote the Koreans, more dominant than I’d expected at the start.

  14. 14
    jeff w on 12 Feb 2010 #

    Maybe it’s a reaction to the nation being in the glare of publicity across Europe at the moment, but the team seems to be trying to be as unobtrusive on the pitch as possible here: there’s not much to distinguish their song from any old Eurovisionpudding. This may be the first song I end up deleting from my phone.

    South Korea by default therefore, but there is nonetheless something naggingly insistent about the song, that helps me look beyond the autotune.

  15. 15
    Jonathan Bogart on 13 Feb 2010 #

    South Korea for the win from where I sit; in energy as well as pure style they’ve left Greece panting and clutching their knees all over the field. Which isn’t a criticism of Greece: any eleven would have their work cut out to defend against an attack like that. While I’m personally an admirer of the Greeks’ old-fashioned (and historically accurate!) formations, they don’t do much good when their opponents are cybernetically enhanced.

    (Whether or not such enhancements should be allowed on the field are up to the Federation. Until there’s a decision, we’ll play with what’s on the ground.)

  16. 16
    jeff w on 15 Feb 2010 #

    Second opinion re Greece: that electric bouzouki or whatever it is has really got under my skin. Still can’t get anything from the song or the singer though. I think I need an instrumental mix of this.

  17. 17
    Birdseed on 15 Feb 2010 #

    In retrospect I shouldn’t have picked what seems to be a grower in an instant-opinion-poll competition. Dang. :)

  18. 18
    weej on 16 Feb 2010 #

    This is a tough one – two tracks with something excellent (Speed-bouzouki and inventive cut-up electro-hip-hop bits) and something not so good (boring europop vocals and autotune). Actually, both would be better as instrumental mixes. It’s a real toughie, this one, I’m going to have to come back to it later.

  19. 19
    Dave on 16 Feb 2010 #

    A toss-up fer sure, but I’m going with S. Korea’s immediacy because time is not on my side here.

  20. 20
    Tom on 17 Feb 2010 #

    This one ENDS TONIGHT so get your votes in if you haven’t already.

  21. 21
    Tom on 18 Feb 2010 #

    57% – just 1% away from a win for the Koreans, but Greece nick a point off them at the end.

  22. 22
    mm on 18 Feb 2010 #

    Ah, shame.

  23. 23
    Tom on 18 Feb 2010 #

    That 57% will serve them very well if there are ties at the end of the group (and there very well might be)

  24. 24
    Birdseed on 18 Feb 2010 #

    Phew, I scraped through against what I still think is the hardest opponent, if played right.

Add your comment

(Register to guarantee your comments don't get marked as spam.)


Required (Your email address will not be published)

Top of page