I was lucky enough to win an EA raffle to attend the FIFA World Cup 2002 semi-final between South Korea and Germany in Seoul.
I flew in from the UK via Frankfurt (15 hours flight) and arrived the next morning, local time. Other winners from around the rest of Europe were all flying via Frankfurt, so we were all on the same plane to Seoul. We spent a couple of hours walking around near the hotel and visiting a local shopping mall before heading to the stadium for the match.
With the home-team having excelled themselves to reach the semi-finals as hosts, it was an amazing experience. None of the Koreans we spoke to felt there was any chance of Korea proceeding to the Final, but they were very proud of what they had achieved. I bought a “Be the Reds” T-shirt. I was battling to stay awake towards the end of the match due to jet-lag. Germany won 1-0. Then we were back to the hotel, slept like the dead, back to the airport in the morning and home.
Here is a gallery of photos I took at the time. You can’t see it in the photos, but I was actually on crutches, having just ruptured my posterior cruciate ligament. Playing football, of course!
Quite the experience! I found some mementos while clearing out my desk at EA.