Blinded by results, Klinsmann uses ‘cattle prod’ on weaker Singapore than Vietnam


It’s been almost a month since we’ve seen a national soccer team game that was more about the coach’s lineup than the result. Jürgen Klinsmann, who unnecessarily stretched his squad against Vietnam in a disappointing Asian Cup tune-up, won’t have to do the same against Singapore.

Jürgen Klinsmann’s men’s national soccer team will take on Singapore on Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Seoul World Cup Stadium in the first match of Group C of the 2026 North and Central American World Cup second qualifying round.

The South Korean men’s national team will begin the second round of the 2026 North American Football Championship with matches against Singapore at Seoul World Cup Stadium on June 16 and away to China on June 21.

The 24th-ranked team in the FIFA rankings has won three straight A matches, including a 6-0 thrashing of Vietnam, ranked 94th in the FIFA rankings, on March 17. But it was an embarrassing performance to say the least.

South Korea and Vietnam had met 24 times before last month’s trial, with South Korea holding a commanding 17-5-2 record. Aside from one loss in 2003, the last defeat was in 1959. The KFA has created an unrealistic matchup by inviting Vietnam, a team that is so underdog and not even among the favorites to win the Asian Cup, for an exhibition match.

South Korea even gave it their all against a disappointing opponent. Klinsmann named Cho Hyun-woo in goal, Lee Ki-je, Kim Min-jae, Jung Seung-hyun and Seol Young-woo in defense, Lee Kang-in, Lee Jae-sung, Park Yong-woo and Hwang Hee-chan in midfield and Son Heung-min and Cho Kyu-sung in attack. Son Heung-min, who missed the last match against Tunisia on March 13 due to a groin injury, returned to the starting lineup, and it was safe to say that everyone except goalkeeper Cho Hyun-woo was a starter. Even Cho Hyun-woo, who made the ‘Kazan Miracle’ against Germany at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, was not considered to be much better than Kim Seung-gyu, the main goalkeeper.

Also, Son Heung-min, who has had injury issues, played the full match, while Moon Sun-min and Lee Soon-min didn’t even play against Vietnam after being selected to the national team. The game against Vietnam was a chance for Klinsmann to conserve the stamina of his main players and give playing time to players 무지개토토 도메인 who hadn’t been given much of a chance. Coach Klinsmann used a ‘cow’s knife to catch a chicken’ by playing a lot of his main players, and it was only Vietnam who gained experience against Korea’s best team in an unfamiliar place.

Of course, the second round of World Cup qualifiers is important because it’s played in a set bracket, so you can’t choose your opponent, and the result directly affects your chances of qualifying for the World Cup. However, you have to make the most of your opponents. Singapore is the weakest team in Group C with South Korea, China, and Thailand and is ranked 155th in the FIFA rankings, well below South Korea and even Vietnam. To put it bluntly, even if South Korea doesn’t play their starters, they’ll still have to try out players they haven’t used in a while.

However, Klinsmann has largely squandered the opportunity to test the waters with his roster announcement. With the Asian Cup taking place in January, the final roster will be named in late December or early January, meaning that the two November A matches will be the last chance to test the new players.

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