After narrow defeats to Mexico and Sweden, South Korea coach Shin Tae-yong summed up his group’s situation , describing them as”a drowning man clutching at a straw.” The late heroics of Germany’s Toni Kroos against Sweden spared Shin’s side the ignominy of elimination with a match to spare, but a triumph on Wednesday afternoon and also a victory for Mexico against Sweden provides them any prospect of advancement.
Although South Korea are aggressive in the handle and willing to cover lots of ground, they’ve really struggled to create any attacking momentum. A stunning late strike from a largely isolated Son Heung-min against Mexico has been the sum total of the offensive efforts so far, and they didn’t even manage a shot on target in their Group F opener against Sweden.
Opta tell us that South Korea have lost their last four games at World Cup finals, equalling their worst ever sequence. It’s also worth noting they have dropped their past two World Cup games from Germany, a group match in 1994 and the semi-final in 2002.
The cause of south Korea won’t be helped by the loss of skipper Ki Sung-yeung to harm, and Park Joo-ho that was full-back is sidelined. Shin has to find a way to get Tottenham forward Son more support in assault – he had eight shots against Mexico, and taken the whole offensive burden on his shoulders.