Hwang Sun-hong, the head coach of the South Korean men’s national soccer team, emphasized “balance” as a must-win strategy to decorate the interim head coach’s finale with a victory. Attacks should find a solution from the side with a wide space, and defense should pressure the midfield first, which can preemptively block counterattacks. Lee Kang-in (Paris Saint-Germain) and Park Jin-seop (Jeonbuk Hyundai) are mentioned as key cards.

The national team, led by Hwang, will hold an away match against Thailand at 9:30 p.m. on the 26th at Rajamangala Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, in the fourth Group C match of the second Asian regional qualifying round for the 2026 North-China World Cup. If the team wins, it will effectively confirm its advance to the third qualifying round, as the difference between Korea and Thailand is widened to six points with two games left and the gain and loss is more than eight points ahead. Only when Hwang, who is stepping down from his temporary post after this match, succeeds in ending the game, will the burden on the official head coach who will take office in the early days of his term in office be reduced.

Side attacks and midfield defense are important in order to dispel regret from the draw against Thailand, ranked 101st in the FIFA World Cup, at the Seoul World Cup Stadium on the 21st. As he only scored one goal at home, the change in the offense is likely, raising the possibility that Son Heung-min (Tottenham) and Lee Kang-in, who worked together in the second half, will start at the same time. “We need to supplement the broken balance. There are many difficulties in counterattack defense, both left and right. We need to neutralize the opponent’s strengths,” Hwang said after entering Thailand.

The core defense is a combination of midfielders. When looking at the 16th minute goal lost in the second half, six defenders flocked to the right and gave up a shot to Rook Mickelson of Thailand. There was no check on the midfield, but all three-term midfielders Hwang In-beom (Zvezda) and Baek Seung-ho (Birmingham City) specialized in attack. Until the Asian Cup last month, Hwang In-beom was supported by Park Yong-woo (Al-Ain) in the national team, and Baek Seung-ho (FC Gwangju) was supported by Park Jin-seop in the K-League 1 Jeonbuk in the 2023 season. For this reason, Park Jin-seop and Jung Ho-yeon (FC), who are armed with robust activities and defense, are expected to be deployed.

“We need to attack the sides to sway the Thai defense, which is concentrated in the center,” soccer commentator Han Joon-hee said in a telephone interview with the Seoul Shimbun on the day. “As Son moves freely in the center and aims to score, not only Lee Jae-seong’s radius of activities but also the attacking power of both fullbacks is important,” Son said. “As the opponent team’s teamwork and counterattack are excellent, we also need midfielders such as Park Jin-seop to focus on defense.”

Regarding whether Lee Kang-in will play or not, a member of the committee said, “Jung Woo-young is a player who mainly plays on the left, so Lee Kang-in is likely to start on the right.”

BY: 토토사이트

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