There might be a political war of words raging between the White House and Pyongyang at the moment, but the coach of North Korea's victorious AFC Women's Championship team doesn't want to know about it. After North Korea defeated Japan 3-0 in the semi-finals yesterday - setting up a final against China and also guaranteeing the North Koreans a berth in the World Cup finals in the United States - coach Ri Song-gun made it abundantly clear his team were only interested in sport, not politics. 'As far as we can as sports people, we have nothing to do with it,' he said, laughing warmly, when asked whether he foresaw any political fallout from his team's trip to America. 'We are very pleased to have qualified for the World Cup. As far as it is confirmed that DPR Korea will take part in the USA, we will do our best to improve our technique so we can fully display the power of Asian women's football throughout the world.' As well as giving the defending champions a chance to retain their title, yesterday's win at Rajamangala Stadium guarantees the North Koreans one of Asia's two automatic places in the World Cup finals, to be hosted by North Korea's ideological enemies. While the two countries square up over the North's pursuit of its nuclear weapons programme, there's a very real possibility that in September the two nations will meet face to face in women's football's premier competition. Ri, who guided the North Koreans to the 1999 World Cup, also held in America, has steadfastly adopted a wait and see response to questions about whether his side will take their place in the United States. However, sources close to the Pyongyang sports authorities say the North Korean National Olympic Committee has made an initial indication that they do intend to send the team to the United States. The North Koreans rapidly swept Japan's best efforts aside, through the crisp finishing of the tournament's leading scorer, Ri Kum-suk, who headed home Jin Pyol-hui's cross in the eighth minute, and effectively put the game out of reach when she neatly dispatched Yun Yong-hui's pull back from the goal-line 10 minutes before the interval. While Japan tried a variety of attacking combinations to create a breakthrough, they were never allowed to settle on the ball by the tigerish Sin Kum-ok and the rest of the North Korean midfield. And when the unfortunate Yayoi Kobayashi flicked a right-wing corner into her own net with seven minutes left it only served to confirm an inevitable defeat. China earned their berth with a 3-1 victory over Japan, thanks to two early goals from Bai Jie in the 12th and 19th minutes and an 89th-minute clincher. The South Koreans replied through Kim Jin-hee in the 26th minute.