The match started out slow with Korea in almost total control of the ball but having difficulty launching the quick attack they are known for because of Hong Kong?s five-man defense line. Hong Kong tried to counter-attack whenever they gained the ball from Korea but couldn?t keep their passes going for long. The first attempt at goal didn't come until the 11th minute from the right foot of Ahn Jung-Hwan (Korea Rep.).
Korea finally drew the crowd?s attention at the 22nd minute when Lee Eul-Yong fired a crushing left foot shot. Korea's first goal came shortly after this, from a right corner kick that sent both teams scrambling for the ball, which Kim Do-Heon managed to score with his left foot.
It seemed like a one-sided match, when Hong Kong swiftly took advantage of a rare opportunity. Szeto Man Chun's free kick traveled in the air towards the goal, where Akandu Lawrance chimezie was waiting. Shaking off the Hong Kong defense, Akandu drove the ball in with his right to equalize. Korea continued to dominate but the first half finished in a 1-1 tie.
In the second half, Korea again was in control, and in the 50th minute a long pass from Yoo Sang-Chul went to Kim Dae-Eui on the right side who then delivered the ball up front. Kim Do-Hoon headed the ball in to score Korea's second goal. Another goal for Korea followed in the 57th minute from a right corner kick, which Ahn Jung-Hwan headed to give Korea a secure lead.
Hong Kong had only 3 shots in the first and second half combined, while Korea overwhelmed them with 23.
Looking back at his team?s performance after the match, Korea's coach, Humberto Coelho commented, "Hong Kong was playing a defensive game and it being our first match of the tournament made our players a bit stiff in the first half, but I think our team finally started to relax and function well in the second half." The opening game of the East Asian Football Championship 2003 Final Competition held no surprises as the higher ranked Korea Rep. secured a victory.