Korea vs. Iran: Player Ratings (UPDATED)

We lost but I honestly don’t care as there were definitely plenty of takeaways from this one, the most important being JHS FOR KNT STARTING CB!

KJH 6.5 – should’ve done better on the FK goal but he did make a couple of good saves and he is obviously much much better than JSR. I wouldn’t mind seeing him in the AC

YSY 6 – eh. Could’ve and needs to do better. Let’s give him more time at QPR first, I’d think KJS can do better.

JHS 7 – Very good. See? He’s exactly what we needed. Never ball watches and doesn’t make big errors. I’m looking forward to seeing KJY – JHS

KTH 6.5 – I can’t believe I’m saying this but KTH was good and worked pretty well with JHS. He got exposed a couple times but this time around the players around him compensated for it. Maybe this just speaks to how bad Iran was attacking (from open play).

KCS 6 – did a decent job containing Dejagah and was the frequent receiver of KSY’s long balls. Unfortunately he could’t do much with them

PJH 6.5 – Better than HKY as KSY’s partner. Unfortunately, we’ve never seen how PJH does under pressure, so I want to see him play DM a bit more first to see how he does.

KSY 7 – The usual.

SHM 7 – pretty much our only attacking outlet, managed five shots, a couple of which almost went in. I still get the feeling, though, that we’re misusing his talents. We need to seriously stop playing “meaningless possession” football whose only attacking outlet is through the wings.

LCY 6 – Very good in the first half, but was less influential in the second for some reason. It’s interesting how sometimes he’d drop back even deeper than PJH and KSY. I also wish LCY would be the one receiving the long diagonal balls from KSY rather than KCS, as I’d imagine he’d be able to actually create something out of that.

KJC 5 – Particularly poor in the first half, but better in the second. Misplaced passes, bad shots, and pretty much did nothing useful for the first half. Could’ve unleashed SHM on a break but his through pass was horrendous. Got a little more involved in the second. Verdict? Let’s stick to NTH.

LKH – 6 more involved than PJY but still not quite satisfactory. No shots on goal, and had nothing really going for him except a couple dribbles. At this point I think we gave no option but LDG who may not be that good, but at the very least, knows how to score. And he can’t be that bad against Asian opposition right?

The subs were given almost no time.


In the end it’s the same fcking situation over and over again. We look good but can’t score. Well this is the problem when you don’t really have a striker right?

The answer is actually, and this is ironic coming from me, LDG. I don’t care about off the ball movement and link up play anymore, it just hurts you so much to have strikers who literally don’t know how to score. So please, let’s call up LDG for a LDG – SHM NTH LCY – PJH KSY – YSY JHS KJY CDR – KJH lineup.

Alternatively, would it really hurt to play SHM up there? SHM – KMW NTH LCY – PJH KSY might be a viable option at this point.

About Jinseok 259 Articles
Diehard Korean football fan. https://www.taegukwarriors.com/jinseoks-story/


  1. I saw bits of the second half (including Iran’s free kick goal and the scuffle at 94′). I was floored when the ref didn’t call that foul against KJH! what the fuck?!! the GK was down and CLEARLY wasn’t in a position to save. ughhhh.

    • My sentiments exactly. We’ve seen fouls called in world football for far lesser infractions, and yet…

      Stielike is really pissed at the ref. To be fair, Iran did take 20 fouls and Korea ended up with more yellows than them.

      So much for his birthday present…

  2. Ok, so in relation to that goal: I only saw it on replay because of a inopportune popup ad, but it did look like it was a foul and shouldn’t have been a goal. However, I wondered what all the others thought. We know Evelyn and Tim’s views. What about the other contributors? What say you?

    • Again in the best attempt to be objective : it looked like a clear foul. To break it down : ball was in kim’s hands, the Iranian player rammed into him, didn’t get any contact on the ball, it comes loose and into net. Interference on GK. Ref blew the call and if he didn’t have a clear line of sight, he should’ve consulted with nearest official.

      Regardless, it doesn’t have too much meaning as a result in itself. Besides, Stielike got most of what observations he needed for Asian cup tourney prep.

      • It was a BS call. They can and do happen in many/most games though. Korea needs to work on goal-scoring and not worry about the official if they want to win the Asian Cup.
        Also regarding the scuffles at the end, I’m ambivalent. A) It seems like Korea and Iran are starting to become bigger and bigger rivals with each game… AND unlike Japan, they’re just as rough as Korea and will always fight back. Rivalry/competition in the region is good. B) It’s called an “international friendly” for a reason. Calm down guys.

    • It didn’t matter to me nor should we dwell on it. The free-kick prior to controversial goal by Sardar Azmoun was quality.

      Instead of the ref or the controversial goal, the focus should be on Korea’s inability to score & again.. losing focusing on defense.

      • i think the inability to score will always be the focus. i asked my question because i didn’t get to see it clearly and i wanted some objective eyes to share their thoughts.

  3. I didn’t watch the game but sounds like same problem. We are one WC striker, CB, and GK from competitive. We need someone to compliment SHM up top. Love LCY but he is journeyman EP level MF at best.
    One thing that would help is to buy some quality players and grant then Korean citizenship.

    • i don’t think LCY was the problem in this match. the biggest problem right now as i see it is that no coach has yet come up with the right system to blend the players we have and let them play to their strengths.

      • I see an utter and complete dearth of creativity up top plain and simple. How do you plan on fixing that? And when is the last time anyone playing the back line made you feel warm and fuzzy inside? Im talking a pure defender who actually intimidates the opposition which helps to keep the house orderly?

        I don’t want to be melodro here, but I’m afraid those two deficiencies have not so much to do with formations. Im not too far off from the idea of fast tracking LSW at this point.

        That back line is by far the biggest concern for this team.

          • Perhaps, but all I can tell you now is that the guys defending the line now are a little light in the loafers. Except Yun….he’s sorta impressed me lately. He might be trainable for an excellent tackler. I don’t know why I get that feeling.

            I saw a glimpse of what the manager might be going for in the future in terms of attacking style although Ive never read anything about him being associated with that style. Im talking about the 1st half here since thats all I can recollect from. He saw first hand what Korea’s become known for.

            Not being to net goals once in the final third. We need an aggressive marauder who makes intelligent cuts AND has the technical ability to attack the goal. I liked what I saw of Son in the 1st half although it seems at times he’s trying to play all the instruments in the band. I admire his desire to win.

          • That’s my point though (defense). The game has evolved to a point where you don’t have those tough, physical man-marking defenders that shut down opposition attackers. It’s about intelligent positioning and being cohesive as a unit. Stopping attacks before they have a chance to really begin. You could drop the best center back in the world into that defense and they’d still struggle because the team does not defend as a single unit.

          • Thats the thing I want from our defenders most. A defender’s mentality. The ability to read a defense and anticipate the attack.

            Kim YG is playing the most important defender position and you wonder why he’s so out of position and getting burned all the time?

        • along with jae’s comments, at this point, it’s already a given that up front and in the back their is personnel weaknesses in terms of talent. however, even where we have talent, they have not been able to play to their strengths.

          • were they that talented though? PCY is a great example actually. i sometimes feel we overrate our guys. I was a huge PCY fan up until he joined Arsenal and things just got weird. I can relent that PCY has some soft feet and used to be a spark plug but his lack of involvement lately while on the pitch has happened WAY too many times to be called flukes. so while he physically towers over any near threats to his place, I don’t feel like he has the striker mentality to pay dividends. I can be wrong here but I don’t expect things from him anymore.

          • and lets be honest about one thing. as a striker, you don’t get paid to play decoy. you certainly don’t get paid as a striker with being a decoy as one of your best assets.

          • i don’t think you read my comment correctly. i stated that we AREN’T that talented up front and in the back. however, even with good wing players and fairly good mids they don’t look at their best. even SHM doesn’t look like he’s set up to play his game. and to answer your question directly, yes, korea has talent where i’ve just outlined above. now i’m not blaming everything on lack of a good system, but nowadays, it’s hard enough to blend world class players without the perfect system, let alone blending decent to good players like korea without the right system. i don’t think we can find the perfect system at this point, so i’d settle for a serviceable one that maximizes strength.

            takeuchi, after your comment about the ‘balotelli’-like discussion, i’m sadly seeing that there’s a lot of parallels not just with that issue but defense and formation, etc. as well. korea seems to be a poor man’s liverpool in many ways having some very similar problems.

        • Steve, your first sentence reminded me of a previous post here on the Tavern about how Korea’s attacking can be super predictable, and creativity up top means that we keep the opposing team’s defenders on their toes, continually. In terms of fixing that, creativity up top is a development that players are individually responsible for, and they need to put their heads together to work it out well on the pitch.

      • Yup. I don’t believe KNT is playing the right system or strength to the pool of players. I hate this obsession with fielding one up top (or searching for true #9) when KNT is loaded with wing forwards. PJH & Ki did okay but their roles overlapped for most part.

        As for defending, I want KNT to sort out the matter of pressing. It’s too dysfunctional…..

  4. Just saw the video. It might’ve been a little rough but I have no problem conceding that goal to the Persians. Kim got a 2nd chance on that deflection he probably shouldn’t have had and got outworked for it in the end.

    Nice goal

      • I tend to base judgements on real speed since there is no chance that a decision or lack of would result in overturn. Its nice having the benefit of slow mo, but in real speed Kim got torched. Plus home advantage has its perks. Right fellas? 🙂

    • I’m trying to download the game but I can’t find it.

      When I watched it live through a stream (wasn’t a great quality.. especially with Iran showing the game in 4:3 ratio), I thought it was 50/50. As I stated above, the free-kick was quality. I did not have any issue with awarding the goal to Iran.

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