Iran v South Korea
Aside from the Japan – Australia game, Iran – South Korea game is a typical of “early final” game. Due to the lousy performances by a lot of strong teams such as South Korea and Australia, many matches which are predicted will happen in the semi final, end up happening earlier. South Korea is a traditional Asian powerhouse with a lot of World Cup participation history. Iran is Asian giant in term of football too with a lot of World Cup participation. Both players from South Korea and Iranhave taken part in the European league.
The only downside that South Korea has is the fact that many of the European players are injured, thus forcing coach Pim Verbeek to depend a lot on his “local” squad. The only recognizable names in South Korea right now are Middlesbrough striker Lee Dong Gook, veteran keeper Lee Won Jae and former Real Sociedad and Numancia winger, Lee Chun Soo. The rest of the squad can’t be taken lightly although their names are less flashy.
Zenit midfielder Lee Ho and talented young right defender, Oh Beom Sook are two of Korea most talented players. Both are expected to be played by coach Pim Verbeek especially after Lee Ho had a brief resting period. In term of defensive line, South Korea is very strong and organized. Veteran keeper, Lee Won Jae has strong leadership and can command the defense line effectively. The midfield is driven by Lee Chun Soo. Judging from Chun Soo performance against Indonesia and Bahrain, he was really the soul of Korea. Many of Korea best chances came from his effort and creativity. Korea has two options in employing the striker, the one man formation or the two men formation. The best choices are Cho Jae Jin and Lee Dong Gook. Pim Verbeek had a problem with Lee Dong Gook after the striker criticized the coach in the media so perhaps Dong Gook won’t made it into the line up again this time.
Iran players are strong and very coordinated as well as balanced. The team holds a balanced composition between the World Cup veterans such as Ali Karimi and Mehdi Mahdakivia with talented youngster such as Vahid Hashemian and Javad Nekounam. Iran strength lies in its collectivity as a team rather than the individual skill of the players. Mehdi Mahdakivia and Ali Karimi both have not shown their best performances though, which lead to Amir Ghalanoei, the coach, decision to often substitute both senior players with the youngsters. This match promises to be an intense match with both nations ambitions to become the champion in this Asian Cup. Iran v South Korea will commence on the 22nd.
Tags: Iran v South Korea, Iran, South Korea, Asian Cup