Dustclouds. Oh god, where’s the broom. And turn on the goddamn lights.
<buzz, crack, pop, fizzle>
And call the Tavern electrician!
You’ve been waiting.
Ok so it was summer, and we were all doing summer things. And change aplenty in our own lives as well as for this whole Tavern thing anyways. Take a seat. First drink is on me. If I have some soju left in the fridge, that is… oh. Roy drank it all. Can’t blame him, America is a sh*tshow. Have some diet coke instead. Let’s talk Korean football.
Shin Taeyong is going to announce his first call-ups tonight. The Tavern will go live to cover the announcement on Facebook, so go smack that like button and follow that page by clicking here.
“Why would I follow a dead Facebook pa-” just do it.
Shin is expected to pick 26 players, at least 10 of whom will be from the K-League. He’s also arranged to have Asia based players attend a week long training camp prior to the formal international break so that he can meet his squad for the first time before two qualifiers that could literally determine the fate of Korean football in the near future.
But how would we do it, if we were in charge? That’s the question Jinseok and I tried to answer. Here are our 26-man rosters for the qualifiers against Iran and Uzbekistan.
- Kim Min Jae – good in K League
- Jung Seunghyun
- Kim Minhyeok- JSH and KMH play together at Tosu and started together last game; I’m done with KYK/HJH/JHS for now
- Kim 기희
- Kim Jinsu
- Choi Chulsoon
- Jung Woon
- Minwoo (why not try out all three left backs cuz I don’t trust KCS all that much lol)
- Lee Jaesung
- Kim Bokyung
- Koo Jacheol
- Ki Sungyong (apparently will be called up even though not fit)
- Lee Changmin
- Han Kookyoung (will probably just end up getting on here)
- Son Junho (doing well and also personal bias here but more likely Lee Keun Ho)
- Either Yoon Ilrok or Yeom Kihun
- Kwon Changhoon
- Lee Chungyong… (ehhhhh)
- Ji Dongwon
- Son Heungmin
- Hwang Heechan
- Lee Jongho (on form in STYs mind apparently (he sorta is imo))
- One of Either Yang DH or Kim SH (for variety)
Heavy on MF/AM but that’s where we have the most ppl
Surefire starters (I think): Son HM, Hwang HC, Lee Jaesung, Kwon Changhoon
Honestly, Jinseok’s picks and my picks aren’t that different. In goalkeeper, the best options seem to lie in Japan, though I do not want Kwoun Suntae to start. Defensively, a Kim Younggwon-Jang Hyunsoo duo just seems the most likely in centreback, given Shin’s preference of the latter. Against Iran, you don’t want to turn over the ball in your own half given the Iranian press and lethal scoring conversion on transitions. Kim and Jang offer that, though an outside pick, Kwon Kyungwon (Tianjin) is apparently being considered. Meanwhile, Hong Jeongho hasn’t played a game since July 1st so keep him away from the NT please. Kim Minjae is a pick for both Jinseok and I, a budding centreback with a bright future and some of the best defensive stats in the K League. He’s a rare player that is building consensus as a must-pick. Meanwhile, Shin’s sides have also traditionally had at least one towering no-nonsense CB (U20 = Jeong Taewook and Olympics = Jung Seunghyeon). Jung is my personal favorite so here he is.
In the wide areas, I’d like to give Oh Jaeseok another hearing, while Park Jooho is an exception to the conventional wisdom that benched/invisible players shouldn’t play for the national team. Kim Minwoo is another very flexible option.
Kwon Changhoon has been good for his first two games at Dijon this season where he’s started, while Lee Changmin has been important to Jeju’s good run of form. Another player Shin saw in the Rio journey and he gets the nod over Nam Taehee simply because Nam isn’t in a season right now in Qatar. Though I’m very skeptical about Lee Jongho, I gave him the nod in case Son can’t do the job. Veterans Yeom Kihun and Lee Keunho have been through many tough tests in their careers, but their selection isn’t as ridiculous as calling up the Lion King (Donggook)…! Forward options look sparse, and I’d start Hwang Heechan both games with Kim Shinwook as a late-game back-up option. K League top scorer Yang Donghyun makes the cut because you can’t neglect the K League top scorer as you say “I could pick all players from the K League if I have to”, but I don’t know if he has anything he can do as a starter that would make him worthwhile.
What are your thoughts? How would you pick the line-up? Let us know in the comments below! The Tavern is back and running, ladies and gents!