The Son is shining. The Son is fiery hot. All the Son puns you heard several months ago are re-emerging on social media and that can only mean one thing: Son has not only rediscovered his scoring boots a few weeks ago – he’s had this thing about not taking them off these days.
In the US, Spurs v Bournemouth will be an early one so set your alarms – let’s go to Korean Footballers Abroad:
All Saturday this weekend. Of course overlapping fixtures less of an issue if our guys don’t play…
|Saturday||7:30 AM||Son Heung Min||Tottenham||Bournemouth||NBCSN|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Ji Dong Won||Augsburg||Koeln||Fox Soccer 2 Go|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Koo Ja Cheol||Augsburg||Koeln||Fox Soccer 2 Go|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Park Joo Ho||Dortmund||Eintracht Frankfurt||Fox Sports 1|
|Saturday||10:00 AM||Lee Chung Yong||Crystal Palace||Leicester||NBCSN|
|Saturday||10:00 AM||Ki Sung Yueng||Swansea||@Watford||CNBC|
|Saturday||3:00 PM||Kwon Chang Hoon||Dijon||@Monaco||None|
Son Heung Min — I have to imagine Pochettino will keep Son’s hot hand in the XI though there’s the issue of eventually getting Wanyama back into the side and back into 3-4-2-1 shape. Until that happens, Son should start but at winger role as Kane got decent minutes in last weekend.
Ji Dong Won — With Bobadilla injured, Ji will probably start but Baum might shake things up in a desperate throw of the dice. Desperate managers are hard to predict. I’m hoping to see Ji up top but Baum seems reluctant to go there.
Koo Ja Cheol — Koo should start but we will see where he starts. I’d prefer him deeper for now to bring some fluidity into Augsburg’s buildup who have otherwise resorted to long balls to nobody.
Park Joo Ho — Perhaps he warms the bench depending on who’s available on short rest.
Lee Chung Yong — Another big win means Allardyce has little incentive to change things up. With Townsend possibly injured, perhaps LCY warms the bench.
Ki Sung Yueng — Like Augsburg’s Baum, Clement has to be similarly desperate but Ki has the opposite role of his KNT teammates: looking to be the fresh legs in a stale and misfiring XI. At this point, I suspect that Clement will only change attackers but there’s certainly a possibility for Ki to have something of a role, especially if Cork isn’t 100%.
Kwon Chang Hoon — Injured so he’s most likely out this weekend.
Tavern Owner back – quick scoring summary: Son made history becoming 1st Korean to score more than 10 goals in a Premier League season. He broke that mark with a brace last weekend – he’s in double digits, bringing his current league total to 11. Add in 6 goals netted in the FA Cup and 1 in the Champions League, all in all Son has scored 18 goals for Tottenham across competitions. Of course it helps to be in one of the most exciting squad in Spurs memory. Son, as inconsistent as he can be, with warts and all, has turned his professional career around -by seemingly sheer willpower. His dribbling isn’t the most eye catching, his touches aren’t the smoothest and his judgement at times is questionable. However, he has redoubled his efforts, worked at his game form – and in the process, finds himself near the top of the league in this key stat: scoring with relative efficiency despite the limited minutes he’s had. If you’ve been following him closely this year, the hyper vigilant know about the glaring misses he’s had – and yet if you look simply at the minutes he’s on the pitch – he’s been scoring at an incredibly reliable rate. It’s that statistic that Pochettino is unable to deny, and so, Son, who was set on moving back to Germany last summer after a heartbreaking experience in the summer olympics, has found himself as one of the vital contributing members of a Spurs side that is fast becoming legend – as well as giving Chelsea a run for their money in the title chase this season.
Moving quickly to the K League, the teams in the ACL had some mixed results. Suwon’s beat down of Eastern was no joke: 5-0 display of dominance puts them in the drivers seat of their group. FC Seoul squeezes out a 3-2 victory over Western Sydney Wanderers – they are barely managing to survive in the competition. Jeju would rue the multiple chances to go ahead against Adelaide and it cost them dearly as defensive blunders allowed the Australian visitors to score twice in the 2nd half. FT 1:3 and Adelaide take all three points. I didn’t watch Ulsan, but the team did poorly away to Muongthong United and squandered a chance to lead the group. Ulsan would eventually capitulate 1:0 to the Thai club.
Round 6 in the K-League classic look like this:
Saturday, April 15
Sunday, April 16
Here’s why I’m giving that club some kudos:
Gwangju FC will invest $1.2m to build a 10k-seater, football-specific home ground to replace their current 45k-seater, multi-purpose venue.
— Steve Han (@RealSteveScores) April 5, 2017
If you build it, they will come. Especially if it’s appealing for the community, has good sightlines and appropriately sized so that it’s consistently filled – which would provide better atmosphere. That would be a tremendous step forward to improving the state of domestic football in Korea. It’s a win – win for Gwangju and the K League, With potentially better finances (since the club will get to keep the revenues rather than shell out for a cavernous stadium) that in turn should provide better stability, financial sustainability and a viable future for the pro footballers at the club. More K League teams should take the initiative to ditch their big assed stadiums -though in Incheon’s case – building a football specific stadium still hasn’t been the magic elixir it had hoped in turning around generally poor attendance. Still, it could be argued, building football appropriate stadiums is an important step in the right direction and just one of several things clubs and the K-league must do to turn the current situation around – which includes the lack of any semblance of TV broadcasting revenue that’s of any consequence.
K League Challenge fixtures:
|Sat||15/04/17||Asan Mugunghwa||02 : 00||Ansan Greeners||More info|
|Busan I’Park||02 : 00||Suwon||More info|
|Bucheon 1995||04 : 00||Daejeon Citizen||More info|
|Sun||16/04/17||Seongnam||02 : 00||Gyeongnam||More info|
|Anyang||02 : 00||Seoul E-Land|
Which game or games are you going to watch?