North Korea is playing in the World Cup this year for the first time since 1966. Will they be the underdog and inspire patriotism and create a new worldview of their country? Nope.
The North Korean team played their first World Cup in 1966. They beat Italy 1-0 and advanced to the quarterfinals. They made it farther than any other Asian team before getting beat by Portugal. This was impressive, since most of the participants didn't even recognize them as a real country.
After a 44-year break that consisted of Rocky IV training montages, rice, and starvation, the North Koreans are back at the 2010 World Cup with a vengeance. Sort of. They were put in the "group of death" with Brazil, Portugal, and Cote d'Ivoire. That's the soccer equivalent being in a steel cage with Hulk Hogan, Muhammad Ali, and Batman.
Their final results were...less than impressive. They lost 7-0 to Portugal, which is 274-0 in football points. North Korean fans (supposedly Chinese actors) were cheering them on to the very end.
The cheerleaders and mascot didn't help much.