The attempt to recapture the top of Asia for the first time in 64 years ended in vain, but the commitment of the European faction shone in the crisis.
The South Korean national soccer team, led by head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, was eliminated after losing 0-2 to Jordan in the semi-final of the 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Alayan, Qatar, on the 7th (Korea time).
As a result, Korean soccer failed to win the championship for the first time in 64 years since the second tournament in 1960.
The national team was considered the strongest team ever with “world class” players from attack to defense, so the disappointment was even greater.
“Captain” Son Heung-min of Klinsmann’s team is recognized as a world-class striker while playing in the EPL for the ninth season. He became the first Asian player to top the EPL scoring list with a total of 23 goals during the 2021-2022 season.
He is also ranked fourth in the EPL in scoring with 12 goals this season.
Hwang Hee-chan, a striker who played for Salzburg (Austria) and Leipzig (Germany) and entered the EPL stage in August 2021 wearing the Wolverhampton uniform, is also seventh in the goal rankings with 10 goals this season.
Son Heung-min and Hwang Hee-chan scored a total of 22 goals in the EPL, the world’s best stage.
The two Korean players played as troubleshooters at an important moment in the upcoming event. Son played full-time in every match and scored two goals through penalty kicks in the group stage.
In particular, the quarterfinal match against Australia was a match that confirmed Son Heung-min’s presence. In the second half of the extra time when he was being dragged 0-1, he induced an opponent’s penalty kick with a bold breakthrough, and Hwang Hee-chan took the game to extra time.
In addition, in extra time, Son Heung-min produced a 2-1 come-from-behind drama with a fantastic right-footed kick free kick.
Hwang Hee-chan, who played in the tournament with an injury, was put on the ground as a substitute only in the third group match against Malaysia.
He opened his way with a bold breakthrough even though he was not in his normal condition, and showed a strong heart to succeed neatly by claiming to be a penalty kicker in the match against Australia.
Midfielder Lee Kang-in (Paris Saint-Germain), the next-generation representative of Korean soccer, led the victory by scoring two goals alone in the match against Bahrain (3-1 win), which was the first group match.
In addition, in the third match against Malaysia, he contributed to a 3-3 draw with his trademark left-footed free kick.
After advancing to the tournament, the scoring stopped, but he showed his sharp golden left foot to pioneer a way out of the national team’s attack.
At the back, key defender Kim Min-jae (Bayern Munich) had a great presence.
Although Klinsmann allowed as many as 10 goals in six games during the tournament, no one could blame Kim Min-jae. Rather, he might have given up more goals without him.
In fact, the semifinal match against Jordan, where Kim Min-jae was absent due to accumulated warnings, was a game that showed how big his vacancy was. 월카지노
Jeong Seung-hyeon (Alwaseul) replaced Kim Min-jae as partner of Kim Young-kwon (Ulsan) but collapsed due to Jordan’s fast counterattack. The team failed to adequately defend its opponent and build-up.
As such, Korea was able to reach the semifinals due to the performance of key European players despite Klinsmann’s lack of strategy.
The presence of European waves in the trend of globalization has long become an indispensable factor in securing the international competitiveness of the national team.