The opponents we will face in the Asian Cup and the Olympics are stronger than those in this three-game series. The team will need to iron out the kinks.
The South Korea U-22 Olympic football team, led by Hwang Sun-hong, defeated Myanmar 3-0 in their third Group B match of the 2024 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-23 Asian Cup qualifiers at the Changwon Football Center at 8 p.m. on Wednesday. With the win, South Korea advances to the tournament as the No. 1 seed.
The tournament served as a qualifier for the 2024 U-23 Asian Cup in Qatar next April and the first qualifier for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris in July. The 2024 U-23 Asian Cup will be contested by the 11 top-ranked teams from each of the 11 qualifying groups (Groups A through K), the top four second-ranked teams and host Qatar, for a total of 16 nations. The tournament will also serve as the final qualifier for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, with the top three qualifying directly to the Games and the fourth-placed team playing a playoff against the top four African qualifiers.
South Korea was drawn in Group B with Qatar, Kyrgyzstan, and Myanmar. Qatar is the host nation and will not be counted in the qualifiers. The match will be played, but as a bonus game. South Korea took on Kyrgyzstan and Myanmar in a bid to finish first.
The first match against Qatar (0-2) was a disaster, both in terms of results and content. They were knocked to their knees at home against a Qatar team that should have been motivated by their qualification. The shock was compounded by the fact that Qatar is an opponent Hwang could have faced at the Asian Games.메이저사이트
The second round match against Kyrgyzstan (1-0 win) was a slugfest. If they lost, they would not even qualify for the Asian Cup, let alone the Olympics. In the third minute of the first half, Hong Yun-sang found the back of the net with a calm finish after a Jung Sang-bin cross. However, despite the early goal, Korea was unable to capitalize on the momentum. In fact, in the final minutes of the game, they were caught off guard by their opponent’s offense.
The third game, against Myanmar (3-0), was a comfortable win. Just like Kyrgyzstan, we started off with a goal from Baek Sang-hoon in the fifth minute. There was a frustrating flow, but we exploded in celebration at the end of the game. Jeon Byung-kwan and Oh Jae-hyuk scored back-to-back goals to complete the much-anticipated multi-goal victory.
South Korea advanced to the knockout stages with 2 wins, 4 points, and 0 goals against Qatar. They accomplished their primary goal, but there’s still a three-game series to look forward to. South Korea was unexpectedly unable to dominate the opponents they faced. It’s not just the shock loss against Qatar. Despite having a number of players who have been making waves in the K League, they didn’t perform as well as they wanted to. They dominated possession and initiative, but it didn’t mean much.
Above all, the goal drought is deeply troubling. Heo Yul (Gwangju), Kim Shin-jin (FC Seoul), Uhm Ji-sung (Gwangju), Jung Sang-bin (Minnesota), and Hong Yun-sang (Pohang) struggled in the forward line, while Lee Tae-seok (FC Seoul), Park Chang-woo (Jeonbuk), and Min Kyung-hyun (Incheon) were also active in the fullbacks, but the goals were not enough.
The monotonous offense was disappointing. The team tried to take advantage of their physical advantage to attack the flanks, but their crosses didn’t come to fruition easily. We knew they were going to drop to a back five. It would have been nice to see a more varied attacking pattern.
Our opponents at the 2024 U-23 Asian Cup and the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris are much better than Qatar, Kyrgyzstan and Myanmar. It’s hard to imagine a weaker opponent than this three-game series. The team will have to work hard to overcome the problems they faced under pressure during the three matches.