Korea DPR, or more commonly North Korea, is a single-party communist state comprising the northern half of the Korean Peninsula. Like most nations that choose to include words like 'Democratic,' 'People's' or 'Republic' in their title, its name is a bit of a misnomer. The country is governed tyrannically by the vast army led by the Supreme Leader Kim Jong-il and the (now deceased) Eternal President Kim Il-sung. While their Southern neighbours have an advanced high tech economy, like in England, the North is a backward place where food and electricity are scarce.
In football terms, North Korea has also failed to keep up with South Korea. This is partly due to an unsurprising lack of investment in sport, but also because the North is yet to stage a rigged World Cup where the referees are firmly on the side of the host nation.
Given FIFA's policy of senselessly rotating the tournament around the World, however, it is likely that even North Korea will get to stage the tournament before it can be held in England again - even if it were to clash with any planned US invasion.
1966 FIFA World CupEdit
North Korea were surprise qualifiers for the 1966 World Cup having taken Asia's only qualifying slot. It was feared that with the tournament being held in a free country like England that the players might try to flee at half time, like Sylvester Stalone and Bobby Moore planned in the classic film Escape To Victory. Fortunately North Korea were drawn into group 3 where the games would be held at Middlesbrough's Ayresome Park and Sunderland's Roker Park. Seeing the North East made the Koreans glad for their oppression back home and the stories they told on their return of the hot liquid beef based beverage they'd been served were enough to put their countrymen off capitalism for good.
Korea got off to a bad start, losing 3-0 to fellow lovers of experimental ideologies, the USSR. In their next game with Chile, a late goal from Pak Seung-Zin salvaged a draw. Their final group game would go down in legend, however, when the minnows triumphed 1-0 over former World Champions and tournament favourites Italy. The goal scorer Pak Doo-Ik was a corporal in the North Korean army. The result was immortalised by the film 'The Game Of Their Lives' by Daniel Gordon and the next day's headline in La Gazzetta dello Sport: "JESUS CHRIST ITALY - YOU WERE BILLED AS FAVOURITES BUT NOW LOOK AT YOU LOSING TO A BUNCH OF FUCKING COMMUNIST DRONES - IF YOU DON'T WIN THE EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP IN TWO YEARS THERE'LL BE HELL TO PAY!"
North Korea, already the first Asian team to reach the quarter finals, looked set to continue the upset when they took a 3-0 lead against Portugal after only 22 minutes. Portugal had progressed so far through a combination of Eusébio's brilliance up front and a defence that had literally hacked off Pelé's legs with a saw and burned Hungarian legend Kálmán Mészöly alive in their group matches. Unfortunately for Korea, Eusebio scored 4 goals and the game finished 5-3.
The North Korean players returned home as heroes but still resumed their regular jobs. Portugal were eliminated in the semi-finals by England. Italy went on to win the European Championship two years later.
2010 World CupEdit
North Korea managed to defy the odds yet again to qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. While everyone was hoping to see them grouped with the USA or South Korea, fans were disappointed once again by the tendency in international tournaments for rigged draws. North Korea were cruelly drawn into the Group of Death along with Brazil, Ivory Coast and Portugal. This is despite FIFA knowing full well that such a group means the Koreans are likely to be sent home without even a shot on target to their name to be slaughtered like dogs by the government.
Recommended strategies for North Korea have included claiming asylum the minute they reach South Africa, invoking the Spirit of 1966 and invoking the Spirit of Istanbul.