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ESPN FC Posted by ESPN staff
Jun 22, 2014

Halilhodzic: Victory for the people

Yacine Brahimi's scoring exploits have helped Algeria close in on a second-round berth.
Algeria found themselves 3-0 up at half-time.

Vahid Halilhodzic dedicated Algeria's first World Cup win in 32 years to the people of the African nation.

Hong bemoans South Korea defending
- Duerden: Algeria expose soft South Korea

Islam Slimani, Rafik Halliche, Abdelmoumene Djabou and Yacine Brahimi all got on the scoresheet as the Desert Foxes defeated South Korea 4-2 to move up to second in Group H.

South KoreaSouth Korea
AlgeriaAlgeria
2
4
ABC, ESPN3 FT
Match 32
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And Algeria face Russia on Thursday knowing that a win will take them through to the knockout stages of the tournament for the first time in their history.

"This was a real feat this afternoon and I would like to congratulate my players," Halilhodzic told his postmatch news conference. "I would like to dedicate this victory to the fans and to the Algerian people, who've been waiting for this for many years.

"We're proud of what we've done. Some people may not be happy, but that's too bad. We will continue preparing for Russia and everything is possible."

Halilhodzic, who hails from Bosnia, added: "This victory, after 32 years, will do a lot for us. We are in high spirits and there will be an additional challenge, which is to win against Russia. This would be great for Algeria. It is complicated, but it would be great to reach the knockout stage and everything is possible.

"I arrived in Algeria three years ago. The situation was a disaster. We had to rebuild everything to start from scratch and set up a new team. Some journalists may have their reasons to criticise us, but not all of them do. When I arrived, we were 52 in the FIFA ranking and now we are 20, I think [actually 22]. I won't say that I won this battle for me, but I've done this for the Algerian people. This is why we've worked so hard for the World Cup."

Slimani was named man of the match following his display, and the 26-year-old is hopeful of advancing to the round of 16.

"It is a dream to reach the knockout stage and it is our objective," he said. "We didn't get off to a good start against Belgium [in the first game]. We played a good match today and I hope we will be able to qualify."

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