South Korea beat Moldova 1-0 in friendly

South Korea beat Moldova 1-0 in the first of three scheduled friendlies that will take place at their training camp in Antalya, Turkey. The games are non-FIFA regulated games because they’re not in an allotted FIFA friendly slot, and are happening while most leagues around the world are currently taking place.

Therefore South Korea was without their European based players, with the squad being made up of mostly K-League players, the majority of which helped South Korea retain the East Asian Championship in Tokyo recently.  They have arranged friendlies with Moldova, Jamaica and Latvia as they intensify preparations for Russia 2018. This seems to have been Shin Tae-Yong’s intention giving him the chance to take another look at Asian based players as he contemplates his options for the World Cup squad selection.

In the first of these matches against Moldova, Korea managed to dictate the flow of the game as they dominated from start to finish. What could be worrying for Shin Tae-Yong was the number of chances spurned by the Koreans, as it’s unlikely they will get that many chances in the finals against Germany, Mexico or Sweden. If they manage to navigate such a difficult group they have to become more clinical in the final third of the pitch.

One man who could help in this aspect could be Kim Shinwook as he offers an option not seen before in many sides from Asia, in that he isn’t far from being a giant. He got the winning goal in this game, a close-range header from a corner. His height and hold up play could be a major threat in the finals, but it’s still unknown if he will even be picked for the squad. He certainly resembles Peter Crouch circa Germany 2006 and could do a similar job for Korea as he did back then for England.

The next game for South Korea will be against Jamaica on Tuesday evening, and they’ll round up the training camp against Latvia on February 3rd.

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