Tavern Hangout LIVE: Korea’s 23 man roster unveiled

…and it’s over. Thanks to Jae Chee, Jinseok Yang, Jeremy Paek, and Tim Lee – it was hella fun. Now if you decide to wade into this (which I do recommend) know that this is a billion $ operation (minus a billion $) -and we had to overcome a number of technical glitches.  Nevertheless, there are some really neat discussions and through it some interesting things came to light when deconstructing Hong Myong-Bo’s 23 man roster going to the World Cup. …and like any spur of the moment conversation, I forgot to talk about a number of things. The french call this the ‘spirit of the stairwell,’  -all the stuff you wanted to say but thought of after the conversation ended.

The old Tavern owner forgot to mention in the Hangout that Jae and his crystal ball was pretty right on the money when it came to forecasting Hong’s 23. In an upcoming issue of FIFA World Cup magazine to be published in England, Jae predicted accurately 22 out of 23 players that was eventually named midweek (he only missed Ji Dong-Won -had Yun Il-Lok instead). But Jae had submitted this in a profile of the World Cup Taeguk Warriors squad close to 5 months ago!

In a botched 1st attempt to air the Tavern Hangout (I somehow accidentally made the broadcast available to viewers 18 and older -then in trying to fix it had to set up the broadcast from scratch) I had a snazzy powerpoint that went over some interesting stats about this World Cup edition of the Taeguk Warriors (it even drew ooohs and ahhs from the other Tavern writers). Damn!  Well, here’s the short non-snazzy text version which I aggregated the stats from the Choson Ilbo -cause that’s how I roll:

Taller…younger…(some) experienced?

  • Height Average 184 cm – one of the taller squads in recent memory
  • Average age: 25.1 years – younger than the 2010 WC squad by close to 2 years
  • Youngest Player: Son Heung-Min -age 21
  • 1 player in his 3rd world Cup: Park Chu-young
  • 74% players are based overseas
  • 9 players based in Europe

I had prepared all these cool images to show (which I borrowed aggregate style from Korean media):

23 man roster going to the World Cup

and from a Dan Orlowitz tweet:

Where did South Korea’s 23 come from?


K-League        6

J-League         4

CSL                 3

EPL/Champ     5

Bundesliga      4

Saudi PL          1

From TotalBarca.com

I did talk briefly about Barcelona’s transfer ban lifted temporarily while they fight FIFA’s ruling that for now has made Lee Seung-Woo, Paik Seung-Ho and Jang Gyeol-Hee ineligible for regular season academy games. Above is a photo I was planning to show viewers to the hangout.

Finally I referenced tonight a Cha Bum-Kun blog post where he visited Park Joo-Ho in a hospital for a 2nd surgery on his toes.  When you see the pictures, this might give those angry (including myself) about Park’s exclusion from the 23 a bit of insight into Hong’s reasoning for the decision.

Cha Bum-Kun visits Park Joo-Ho in the hospital

It would’ve been a nice photo to show during the broadcast, but damn if my tab disappeared on me. Technology – love it AND hate it. I’m married for life.

– Roy Ghim / aka the Old Tavern Owner


Tim Lee’s spirits mulling in the stairwell:

I had two vital points I forgot to bring up in the Women’s section – firstly, 5 teams qualify for the WWC next year in Canada from Asia, and North Korea is not in the Asian Cup due to a doping scandal in the 2011 edition. So Vietnam, Thailand or Myanmar could make their WWC debut. Korea should easily qualify.
Secondly, South Korea is bidding for the 2019 Women’s World Cup! Clearly looking to develop the Women’s variant in Korea, so having Ji So Yun go abroad was a huge step, and if we are awarded the WWC, it would be another colossal step towards promoting the Women’s game. They’re facing stiff competition though – England, France, New Zealand and South Africa are all also in the hunt. The female version has more supporters in England and France, but Europe last hosted the WWC in 2011, in Germany. Perhaps FIFA will turn to another continent this time? The hosts will be selected next year.



About Roy Ghim 454 Articles
The old Tavern Owner


  1. a quick sorry to viewers affected by the late late start – some problems came on my front, my laptop was acting up so i switched computers, and problem was solved. Technology ain’t always perfect – mianhaeyo ! 🙂

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