The Korean women’s national soccer team is determined to recover its honor at the Hangzhou Asian Games, which is just around the corner.
In previous Asian Games, things that collapsed even before reaching the final threshold were repeated. The best result was a bronze medal. At the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Games, where South Korea was confident of winning its first title, it met Japan in the semifinals and was eliminated 1-2.
This year, five years later, Korea took the opportunity to challenge its new history with revenge. South Korea, tied to Group E along with Myanmar (22nd), the Philippines (25th) and Hong Kong (28th) in the group stage of the Hangzhou Asian Games, is likely to meet Japan in Group D if they reach the quarterfinals as the top of Group E. Unlike the first and second place in the group stage usually face off in the tournament, the first place in Group D and the first place in Group E, which are tied with four teams, will meet in the quarterfinals.
Colin Bell, head coach of the national team, said, “I don’t understand why the top players in the group stage meet, but I will only focus on winning (from the group stage to the quarterfinals against Japan).”
Japan is one of the top Asian women’s soccer teams. In the 2023 Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, she was the only one to lose to Spain, the winner. However, South Korea is also considered a match worth trying because it boasts a formidable potential to be runner-up in the women’s Asian Cup last year.토토사이트
What Bell believes is the revival of midfielder Lee Min-ah (32, Hyundai Steel). Lee Min-ah, who left the ground in December last year due to a ruptured cruciate ligament, regained the Taegeuk mark for the first time in nine months and participated in the Asian Games. Lee Min-ah expressed her strong will, saying, “I will play with that heart when I first start.” Lee Min-ah is not only a player who scored a comeback goal against Japan at the Jakarta-Palembang Games, but also knows Japan better than anyone else by experiencing the Japanese WE League (Ainak Kobe, 2018-2019).
Analysts say that if Lee Min-ah, who has excellent skills and a wide view, does her part, the national team’s attack will also revive. In particular, it is expected to match perfectly with striker Ji So-yeon (Suwon FC Women), who was silent at the Women’s World Cup.
Lee Min-ah stressed, “As I focused on rehabilitation without participating in the World Cup (due to injury), my motivation for this tournament has increased.”
Chun Ga-ram (Hwacheon KSPO), who made a deep impression in the women’s World Cup, is also aiming for a gold medal with his first goal in the A match. Chun Ga-ram said, “The goal is of course a gold medal,” adding, “I personally want to play in all three group matches and raise attack points.”
The national team will leave for Yunzhou, Zhejiang Province, China, where it will play in the group stage on the 19th.