EAC: South Korea vs China Preview

The second round of the EAC resumes tomorrow. With South Korea playing China, and then Japan and Australia facing off. Both matches ended in draws (Korea-Australia at 0-0, and China-Japan at 3-3). That leaves the group, and tournament at that, wide open for any team to win it. Any team that wins this next round will have the inner track for the gold medal, and should Korea-Japan win or Australia-China win, that would set up quite a final day showdown.

South Korea

On the heels of our solid showing against Australia, and the slightly strange 3-3 match between China and Japan, one would figure we may have the strongest side here, assuming we can put our chances away. I was cautiously optimistic in my review of the previous game, and I’ll remain that way for now. Defensively and organizationally, we were much better. But we’re still not where we should (or want) to be. And for that reason I will not get carried away. But anyway, onwards and (hopefully) upwards.

Team news? Not much. Hong seems fairly pleased with the group that played against Australia, but journalists watching his training sessions seem to think he’ll make a few changes. Kim Shin-Wook is tipped to come in, as is Cho Young-Cheol. Leaving would be Kim Dong-Seob and Go Yo-Han. Other players who are being rumored as taking a seat are Lee Myeong-Joo and Kim Chang-Soo, with Park Jong-Woo and Lee Yong coming. I suspect the first two of happening, but I think the latter two are less likely. So, a possible XI would be:

football formations

From a tactical perspective the only/most interesting one will be the striker choice. Kim Shin-Wook or Kim Dong-Seob. Shin-Wook will be fairly familiar, both his strengths and limitations, to most fans given his more frequent run-outs under Choi Kang-Hee. Aerially dominant, if he can get some good service, he could be a real handful. Also, he showed in the Uzbekistan game, that he can be quite effective as a knock-down player with skilled attacking midfielders running onto the ball (his partnership with Son Heung-Min was decent). I suspect that it’s this aspect that Hong Myeong-Bo will be looking at. Kim Dong-Seob on the other hand, didn’t show as much aerial presence against Australia, but did have decent footwork and link-up. So, a simplified choice would be air (Shin-Wook) or ground (Dong-Seob)?


While our Japanese and Australian opposition will be familiar to most, China is likely less known, given their moderate success at football. Despite being the most populous country on the planet by some degree, and having plenty of money to pump into the domestic league, China is yet to produce a team or any individual player that has captured the world’s attention. The closest seems to have been a couple years ago when Shanghai Shenhua signed Chelsea duo Nicolas Anelka and Didier Drogba along with former Argentina national team manager Sergio Batista. The Chelsea pair have since left (citing money issues), although Batista still remains.

The most famous Chinese national team player? That possibly may be Sun Jihai, a defender who spent several years at Manchester City (before Mideast money came). More cynical people may point to Dong Fangzhuo, who spent a few seasons on the other side of Manchester (with United), but never really made any senior side appearances (and was most likely signed for marketing purposes).

In the current national team side, all the players play in the Chinese Super League, with most of the players from the current holders, Guangzhou Evergrande. Guangzhou is also the home of Kim Young-Kwon. While Korea, Japan, and Australia have all brought their B teams (although part of ours is the A team), China has brought their A squad, given the league is in break, and they don’t have any players playing in Europe. This gives them a slight advantage over the rest of the teams, and also hints at why they won the contest the last time out.

Since 1978, Korea has a spectacular record against China. 16 wins, 11 draws, and just 1 loss. When did that one loss occur? That’s right, in 2010, in the last edition of the East Asian Cup. Hopefully that won’t happen again tomorrow.

Currently, China does not have a permanent manager. The previous manager was the Spaniard Jose Antonio Camacho, but he was sacked after not qualifying for the World Cup, not qualifying for the Asian Cup, and also a few humiliating losses including an 8-0 loss to Brazil (China’s worst recorded loss ever), and a 5-1 loss to Thailand. Camacho, most famous for his years at Real Madrid (as a player), and then as a long-time manager of the Spanish national side (until the penalty shootout loss to Korea at the 2002 World Cup). Former assistant manager Fu Bo has taken over the reigns on a temporary basis.

I feel like I say this too often, but I don’t really know the Chinese national team, so I’ll just list what another site (from Naver) is suggesting their line-up will be. It’s a 4-3-3 with the following players:

football formations

If you’re interested in a more in-depth look at Chinese football, I found this site called ‘Wild East Football‘ which would seem to be our Chinese counterparts. Give it a look over.


I think this match will probably be a little closer than some expect. I think Korea, given our defensive strength (as long as it stays the same as the Australia match), should have a slight edge. I don’t like doing score predictions (because I’m usually wrong), but I’ll guess 2-1 Korea, leaving it all to do on Sunday against Japan.

The match will once again be broadcasted on JTBC (in Korea) and One World Sports (in the US). Both channels will also be doing live streams and replays as well. The match is at 8PM Korean standard time, and will be held at Hwaseong Sports Complex.

About Jae Chee 339 Articles
A football fan who got bit by the writing bug.


    • I thought he was okay. Pacey, a bit direct. He’s certainly not a finished product, but he has some potential, and he offers something a bit different from the other attacking midfielders.

    • Oh really? I haven’t tried it since I live in Korea (just use the network or Naver broadcast which works well).

      Then perhaps it would be a good idea to open this up to our readers. Where do you watch Korean matches overseas?

      • Hi Jae,

        I watch the KNT matches in Los Angeles (Koreatown), California, USA.

        Random: During the World Cup, LOTS of people (including myself and my family) always come outside to watch the Korean matches on the big screen (organized by the Korean community of Los Angeles) . Lots of noise and lots of fun! I really hope Korea gets into at least the quarter-final (I think at this point, we really deserve it).

        Anyway, whenever I try to use oneworldsports, the website requests that I download some “HD application”. I’ve tried this before, it will give your internet browser a really hard time. There isn’t really a clear option that enables the audience to watch the matches live on their website. I think their schedule is incorrect as well.

        Please let us know about the naver streaming (and other methods of watching)!


        • Hi Jeremy,

          I do hope there’s something similar in D.C. when Brazil ’14 rolls along.

          Anyway -One World Sports – I had their channel for a while but dropped it on DISH due to the added cost of their Korean programming+Sports package. As you say, their free preview stream is laden with extra hoops to jump through. It works on my computer – but it’s a generally poor stream. In fact they didn’t broadcast live the Korea China match -needless to say, I wasn’t too happy.

          One World Sports is back on track and scheduled to air / stream the match.

          I can’t endorse this approach officially, but before game time, the Tavern Twitter will temporarily have a solution if you choose not to take the OWS route. You will have to make a guess as to what the solution will entail. This twitter message will only appear for the first 30 minutes of the match on Sunday, then that message will ‘self destruct.’ I don’t want to start a precedent (there’s legal murkiness with our hosting site and wordpress on such an approach), but for the haniljeon – I’ll make an exception.

  1. Just wondering, why doesn’t Park Joo Ho (Mainz) ever play for the NT (I know the EAC is only Asian based players… but I mean like other games for the NT)? What are we doing with a defender that is playing in Europe… is Kim CHang Soo that good?

    • Park Joo-Ho does play sometimes. Comparing him to Kim Chang-Soo isn’t exactly accurate as they generally play on opposite sides. Kim Chang-Soo is a right back and Park Joo-Ho is a left back. Park has been criticized in the past for being inconsistent defensively, and has never really been viewed as a favorite for any manager lately. Cho Kwang-Rae had Lee Young-Pyo and then a revolving set of left backs, Choi Kang-Hee used Park Won-Jae and others. It was interesting that Park was called for the June qualifiers, but never played with Kim Chi-Woo starting all three matches. As long as Yoon Suk-Young continues to be on the fringes at QPR, Park (assuming he plays regularly at Mainz) should have a chance.

      Kim Chang-Soo isn’t that good, but he certainly seems to be the best overall right back we have right now.

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