Korean soccer’s eternal captain Park Ji-sung predicted that the possibility of Taegeuk Warriors’ juniors winning the Asian Cup is higher than ever. In particular, chances are high that the team will play in the final against Japan, its archrival. As for national team captain Son Heung-min, he praised the team, saying, “He has become a bigger player than I thought.”
Park Ji-sung, who contributed to the semi-finals with a winning shot against Portugal at the 2002 Korea-Japan World Cup and led the team to the round of 16 in the first away tournament as captain at the 2010 South African World Cup, said, “The possibility of Taeguk Warriors’ juniors winning the Qatar Asian Cup to be held in January next year is higher than ever,” and wished to lift the trophy.
In an interview held shortly after the “12th JS Foundation Talent Student Donation Ceremony,” Park Ji-sung gave generous encouragement to his juniors, hoping that Korean soccer, which he did not achieve, would become the top Asian leader.랭크카지노
Park Ji-sung delivered a scholarship to JS Foundation, where he is the chairman of the board. The JS Foundation Talent Student Donation Ceremony, which began in 2012, is an event of a lifetime that Park Ji-sung can take care of even in the midst of COVID-19. This year, 23 elementary, middle, and high school students who stand out in sports such as soccer, swimming, ice skating, and handball, as well as their studies, violins, and computers, raised their future by receiving awards from superstar Park Ji-sung.
After the award ceremony, Park Ji-sung said, “When the Asian Cup was mentioned, the players’ ability and the flow of the national team are very good,” stressing that this tournament is the right time to win.
Korea won the first competition (Hong Kong tournament) in 1956 and the second competition in 1960 on its home turf, but has never won a competition since then. The 2011 Qatar Asian Cup, where Park Ji-sung led the national team by wearing a captain’s armband, also did not have good luck in winning the title. It lost to Japan in the semi-final after a penalty shootout, and ranked third after losing to Japan in the third place.
The team did not have a chance to win the title at any subsequent event. At the 2015 AFC Asian Games in Australia, Son was the runner-up after losing to the host country Australia. At the previous event, the team bowed its head after being hit by Qatar in the quarterfinals.
Park Ji-sung expected a good performance, citing that the current national team is a “best-ever” member, even though it is a tournament that cannot be reached.
Park Ji-sung, who recently traveled all over Europe to meet juniors from overseas, said, “I think the expectations for this Asian Cup will increase as much as they are good,” adding, “I think I asked the players a lot of expectations and requests to win the Asian Cup this time, which I have dreamed of but have not achieved.”
He then praised Son Heung-min, who is going to the Asian Cup, which may be the last time in his life, wearing a captain’s armband, and signaled that the task is to put down the burden. Son Heung-min joined the national team in earnest at the 2011 Qatar Asian Cup, when Park Ji-sung was retiring, and announced the future of Korean soccer, and now he has become a world-class striker.
“When I first saw Son, I think he said ‘future ace’ in a funny way,” Park said. “He has become a much bigger player than I expected. Based on that, he is leading the team so well in the national team as well. I think that is one of the reasons that makes us look forward to the Asian Cup.”
“As much as (Son Heung-min) is showing so good performance this season in his team, I think the good performance of European players during the season will turn into great expectations for the Korean national team, except that the competition is held in January and the players in Europe cannot play for their team.” He predicted, “I also have a lot of expectations for this national team, and I think the biggest obstacle in this Asian Cup will be that the players have to bear this burden.”
When asked to give advice to Son in light of the Asian Cup that took place at the same venue 13 years ago, Son said, “I don’t think I need any special advice. I also advanced to the round of 16 at the World Cup in South Africa and faced the Asian Cup in Qatar. Son Heung-min said, “As a captain, advancing to the round of 16 at the World Cup in Qatar would have been a great experience.” After all, the key is whether he can display his individual capabilities 100 percent of his squad. Since fans’ expectations for this Asian Cup are much higher than those of other Asian Games, I think it will be important to let go of that burden and show what they can do on the field.”
Park Ji-sung also said that the two teams are more likely to make the final against Japanese soccer, which has been on the rise as much as Korea, such as taking a great victory in the recent A match against Germany.
Asked about the probability of the final match between Korea and Japan, Park said, “Yes.” “If the two teams cruise as they want, chances are high that they will face off in the finals. I think that’s highly likely to become a reality in the Asian Cup.”
However, he also stressed that both teams have many variables to make it to the finals without difficulties. “In the tournament, how much luck you give is not proportional to your performance,” Park said. “I think how much luck you give will be important in the tournament. If you keep up with your luck, we can come the closest to the goal of the championship, which we wanted so much, so I think the players and the national team have a good flow.”
The Asian Cup will open on January 15 of the new year, and South Korea will be in Group E with Bahrain, Jordan and Malaysia.