North Korea's coach blamed his side's 2-0 loss to the United States on his players getting struck by lightning in the build up to the Women's World Cup, reports BBC Sport. North Korea coach Kwang Min Kim, claimed that some of his players were still recovering from being hit by lightning during training on 8 June.
"When we stayed in Pyongyang during training our players were hit by lightning, and more than five of them were hospitalised," said coach Kim, without actually naming the players affected.
"Some stayed in hospital and then came to Germany later than the rest of us. The goalkeeper and the four defenders were most affected, and some midfielders as well. The physicians said the players were not capable of participating in the tournament.
"But World Cup football is the most important and significant event for a footballer, so they don't want to think about anything but football.
"The fact that they played could be called abnormal, the result of very strong will."