Choosing China as the venue for an exhibition match is a good move for South Korea’s U-24 national team as they prepare for the upcoming Hangzhou Asian Games in September. However, China’s deep-rooted black history of Shaolin soccer has made South Korea a scapegoat.
Hwang Sun-hong’s U-24 soccer team played China’s Asian Games team in an exhibition match at Jinhua Stadium in Zhejiang province, China, at 7 p.m. on Aug. 15, winning 3-1. The second leg will be played at 8:35 p.m. on Sept. 19 at the same venue.
Men’s soccer matches at the Hangzhou Asian Games will be played at eight stadiums in six cities. Jinhua Stadium is one of them.
On the 12th of this month, before departing for China, head coach Hwang Sun-hong said, “We decided to hold the trial in China because we needed to adapt to the local conditions. I also wanted to get a feel for the atmosphere, and I think it will be a good outpost.”
However, the name ‘China’ alone raised some concerns. It would be advantageous for South Korea to play a trial against a country one level higher, but very few teams have an U-24 team. Hwang decided that China was better than Southeast Asia, so he headed to China.
Since the opponent was China, there were naturally voices of concern that there might be a scapegoat for ‘Shaolin soccer’. Even if the team was careful, they had to be careful throughout the game because it was not something they could control.
In the end, what they feared happened. Uhm Won-sang (Ulsan Hyundai), who played a ‘multi-goal’ game in the first leg, returned home early due to injury.
After a 0-0 first half, South Korea brought on Uhm in the second half, and the substitution paid off. In the sixth minute of the second half, Uhm took a long pass from the back and made a “sensational shot” with her toes to take the lead.
Uhm Won-sang added a second goal. In the ninth minute of the second half, she finished a pass from Jung Ho-yeon (Gwangju FC) with her left foot. South Korea made it 3-0 in the 16th minute when Jung Woo-young (Freiburg) scored on a winding kick. Three minutes later, Hwang Sun-hong (Seoul FC) had a goal disallowed after he crossed the line but the whistle didn’t blow, sealing the two-goal victory.
Uhm Won-sang was injured in the second 20 minutes. She fell during a contest and rolled her ankle with a Chinese player. The Chinese player’s torso connected with her leg and she was treated off the field, but she was not allowed back on the field.
“I hope it’s not a serious injury,” Huang said after the game.
But in the end, Uhm Won-sang was sent home early. The Korea Football Association (KFA) announced on the 16th that “Uhm Won-sang, who was injured in the friendly against China on the 15th, underwent an MRI examination at a local hospital today and was diagnosed with damage to the right outer ligament and inner triangular ligament.” “He is currently in a half-cast,” the KFA said, adding that “Uhm Won-sang is expected to return home today for further examination as it is considered difficult for him to play in the second match.”메이저사이트
The Hangzhou Asian Games are about 100 days away, and this is the last ‘official call-up’ before the tournament. Before his departure, coach Hwang Sun-hong said that he would use the China trial as the “last straw”. He had to find the best possible combination of players without injuries.