Saudis in off-field win before Japan, Koreans exit World Cup

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Saudi Arabia had plenty to celebrate just hours continental soccer rivals Japan and South Korea endured painful second-round exits from the World Cup in Qatar. The All India Football Federation’s decision to pull out of the race to host the 2027 Asian Cup left Saudi Arabia as the only candidate to host the continental championship. South Korea lost 4-1 to Brazil later Monday and Japan was edged by Croatia after a penalty shootout. While the teams from East Asia progressed further at the global tournament, the power in Asian soccer moved toward the west side of the continent.

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