Korean Players Abroad + K League recap 4/29-4/30; Solid shifts from Son, Hwang & Kwon [update: midweek K League & shock results!]

Son scores his 8th Premier League goal in '16/'17 season / Photo : Premiere League

Lets start with Korean Players Abroad for his take on how KPAs did this past weekend:

Glimmers of hope for relegation threatened teams but lots of danger remains.

Park Joo Ho — No change.

Lee Chung Yong — Made the bench but didn’t come on.

Ki Sung Yueng — Ki’s poor movement is starting to get worrisome. Ki has never been the most motivated runner but you would think that with relegation so close and a showcase event like Sunday vs Manchester United that Ki would be hustling all match. Instead Ki looked selective in his effort, albeit turning on the effort more than last weekend. When he did move, he looked pretty good with some good runs and touches but that made the flat moments all the more visible. He was subbed off as he fatigued but it says something when the older Britton who has virtually no tread left on his tires was taken off after Ki. He was ok, even good for much of the match, but not sure that was enough to be a regular starter in final matches. But a valuable point, and some confidence for the club especially knowing that things would be quite different if certain things played out differently (Southampton missing last second penalty, Rashford’s dive earning PK).

Ji Dong Won — Came on as a late sub but it was a huge win for Augsburg who finally scored some goals and more amazingly kept a clean sheet, albeit against inept Hamburg. The bad news is that Augsburg looked good without Ji so he may have to sit on the bench a bit, but the good news is that Augsburg are two points clear of playoff spot and while far from safety, at least can see some hope on the horizon.

Koo Ja Cheol — Out for season.

Kwon Chang Hoon — I only watched touch videos but KCH looked good when he came on as a sub a bit past the hour mark. It may be frustrating for him and for Dijon fans to sit on the bench but if he keeps causing danger as he did Sunday, more chances and a bigger role have to come soon. He had some nice touches that coulda/shoulda been assists and had a chance to score the winner late after some good work. Hopefully he gets to start soon and similarly, hopefully I get to watch him live soon too.

Son Heung Min — A match without a goal or an assist, and yet maybe the strongest sign yet that Son may be finally maturing as a player. Taking chances at the right time, pitching in on the defensive end, and moving with confidence are all things that we saw on Sunday but previously seemed reserved for only after he had scored. Last season, Son looked out of sync with his teammates’ rehearsed moves, and even on his hot streak in the fall felt like a function of independent brilliance. But Sunday he contributed strongly to the team despite not being at the top of his game and it feels like a positive step forward in his mental maturity. It’s too bad his hard work wasn’t rewarded when he kicked a ball against Alexis Sanchez’ elbow in the box and yet a penalty wasn’t called.

Tavern Owner: I got to see the north London derby at a different tavern (Blue Side in Maryland) with other Spurs supporters and observed Son doing something that reminded me of his days bombing down the field  – countering attacking with skillful poise.  Indeed, Son moved the ball very, worked efficiently, quick in sync one touch passing in approved Pochettino methodology. Remember Son struggling as wingback against Arsenal?  Son reversed that bad mojo, and it was Park Chu-Young’s old teammate Alex Oxlade Chamberlain turn playing wingback who bore the brunt of having to defend deep against Son’s penetrating runs down the left.  Analysts noted how the young Chamberlain’s usual offense contributions to the Gunners was tactically negated as he was pinned back far deeper than he or Arsene Wenger had planned.  Son got the better of him in one spectacular take on, leaving Son charging into space with a delicious shot on goal – though blocked -fell to Eriksen who volleyed it just over the crossbar – as it turned out was Spurs best chance to score before halftime.  Curiously, Son was shifted over to the right- where he also caused problems.  Son’s incisive passing was often found his target operating in the box – causing chaos for the defense. And to echo Skimmilk – everyone saw in slo motion replay that Son was absolutely correct – a clear handball from Alexis that should have resulted in a penalty. Nevertheless, a commanding 2-0 win was more than enough.  Cancel St. Totterham’s day everyone, all eyes now on whether Chelsea can drop points with Spur as the most exciting and tactically nimble squad in the Premiership.

One more note: it’s interesting that while Son didn’t score, it was perhaps one of his best performances in a Spurs uniform.  He’s had quite a season to be certain, but there’s been previous games where he scored – made headlines and obvious impact with said goal, but as longtime watchers of Son know – his touches leave something to be desired. This was more a complete game despite the lack of getting on the scoreline. Ball control, passing, dribbling, moving the ball into space, positioning, tracking back in defense, runs – his contribution wasn’t headline grabbing. But Poch knows and so do we – his confidence was clear to see. He’s part of perhaps one of the best Spurs side in their history and it’s exciting to see how much more Son can grow and develop into. BTW he made WhoScored.com’s Premier League team of the week:

 

 

Hwang Hee-Chan scored another goal -scoring goals in consecutive appearances for RB Salzburg. Perhaps a Hwang move to the other RB club in Germany next season?

Hwang Hee-Chan toe poke goal. FT RB Salzburg 1:1 Reid

 

Thanks to Heon for Son and Kwon ball touch summaries!

Saturday, April 29

Dragons
2
FT

Gangwon
1

Steelers
1
FT

Sangju Sangmu
2
Sunday, April 30

Jeju United
1
FT

Suwon
2

Daegu
2
FT

FC Seoul
1

Gwangju
1
FT

Jeonbuk
0

Incheon
1
FT

Ulsan
2
I’m late to a meeting – be back for talking points on round 8 of the K-league classic season
  • All the top teams dropped points, surreal results.
  • midweek action right before Korean holiday/election, some shocking results and gravity shifting table movements:
Wednesday, May 3

Ulsan
1
FT

Daegu
0

Gwangju
1
FT

Gangwon
1

Suwon
1
FT

Steelers
0

FC Seoul
1
FT

Dragons
0

Jeonbuk
0
FT

Jeju United
4

Sangju Sangmu
0
FT

Incheon
1
  • Frente Tricolor in full throated support mode – officially are happy with a 1:0 home win over Pohang – Santos goal seals it. 2nd loss in a row for Pohang. Pohang keeps sliding down from the top 4 while Suwon asserts themselves into 4th in the table.
  • FC Seoul regroup to eek out 3 points against Jeonnam, Osmar unmarked on a set piece knocks in the only goal
  • Incheon remarkably with their 1st win of the season – away at Sangju no less!
  • Battle for the top: ladies and gentlemen, #1 vs#2 results in a lopsided Jeonbuk home loss 0:4 to upstarts Jeju United!  Jeonbuk had been suffering a string of injuries, but none could have predicted Jeju dismantling the Asian champs in this fashion.  Jeju leapfrogs over Jeonbuk in the table (but just barely)

 

Extra time: Ji So-Yun scored a brace for Chelsea Ladies as they dominated Yeovil Town 6:0, an excellent start to the WSL season -Watch her goals in the link below:

 

 

 

Attendances weren’t the greatest across the K-League Classic and Challenge – except in Seoul World Cup stadium – 26K attendance midweek ain’t too shabby.

K League Challenge results (soccerway.com)

Wed 03/05/17 Seongnam 0 – 2 Seoul E-Land View events More info
Asan Mugunghwa 1 – 0 Suwon View events More info
Anyang 3 – 2 Daejeon Citizen View events More info
Gyeongnam 1 – 0 Busan I’Park View events More info
Bucheon 1995 2 – 0 Ansan Greeners View events
About Roy Ghim 405 Articles

The old Tavern Owner

2 Comments

  1. yea… probably done visiting this skeleton site. 0 updates in two weeks. try again when you guys have time to write.

    • Hey its a DIY operation and all volunteer power – instead of bitching, why not contribute to the cause? Hit me up if you want step up the proverbial plate

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