It feels like forever since we’ve seen the national team in action but the KNT is finally back! In both the men’s and women’s teams!
Our first bit of news is the postponement of the U17 Suwon Cup due to the darn MERS outbreak in Korea. It was supposed to be a 4 team tournament comprised of us, the US, Nigeria, and Brazil. It was also supposed to feature Choi Jin Chul’s men (teens?), which includes Jang Gyeol Hee and Lee Seung Woo. I was really looking forward to seeing these guys again (Lee has been in Korea since the U18 Suwon Challenge Cup in April/May training for the U17 edition) but we’re gonna have to wait until either August or September.
Meanwhile, here’s a hattrick LSW scored for Myungji University right after the U18 Suwon Cup (he’s training with their team to up his fitness). But for some reason his first goal won’t load so I could only add a URL
Our Tavern podcasts will return soon! With no major events other than the ongoing K League and the KPA, there really wasn’t too much to talk about. Well, that was a lie – there’s a lot to talk about this K League season as it has been certainly very interesting with regard to player performances and potential KNT candidates. Unfortunately, Jeonbuk are pretty much running away with the league already just like Chelsea did this EPL season.
There could’ve been a podcast for the U18 Suwon Cup but there really weren’t many talking points to take out of that aside from quite a handful of promising players. IMO it wasn’t Lee Seung Woo who stood out vs. Uruguay, Belgium, and France, but a couple other offensive players who performed really well vs. Uruguay and Belgium but just like everyone else kinda went quiet vs. France.
Anyway, back to the next podcast: what will we be covering? The FIFA Women’s World Cup of course! Team Korea kicks off vs tournament favorites Brazil (is favorite the right word here? I guess THE favorite would be USA/Japan/Germany but right behind them in the women’s game is Brazil/France/England IIRC) before moving onto Spain and Costa Rica who we should be looking to beat. Perhaps against Brazil we should play like we did vs. USA, secure at least a draw, then go into the rest full strength. IDK, we’ll see what happens.
The Tavern will also provide posts on the WWC the same way we did for Brazil 2014: a preview the day before, a game recap the day of, and player ratings / analysis / thoughts sometime before the next preview.
Around the same time as the Women’s WC will be… the WCQ! We have a friendly with the UAE before moving on to face Myanmar as an official WCQ. This will definitely be covered, potentially as a second podcast altogether to avoid a super long 1.5 hr podcast. While Myanmar should be EZ, for some reason I feel strangely nervous vs. UAE. Hong Jeong Ho and whoever’s in DM + CB need to be on their toes vs. Omar Abdulrahman.
For those of you following the Tavern Twitter account, Roy has retweeted what Jae, Tim, and I think about the callups – they were … meh. Some of the most in form players in the league like Hwang Eui Jo, Son Jun Ho, Kim Seung Dae, Kwon Sun Tae, Yang Dong Hyun, etc. were excluded at the expense of players like Lee Yong Jae, Han Kook Young, Kim Chang Soo (who I don’t think is even playing regularly, and JSR). However, Stielike did manage to callup a number of promising / on form K League stars like Lim Chae Min (Seongnam CB), Kang Soo Il (only the second half Korean ever to play for the KNT, if he plays that is), and Yeom Ki Hun (who honestly deserves the callup more than any other player on the roster, he’s been on FIRE this season).