The men’s national soccer team at the Asian Games, led by head coach Hwang Sun-hong, will play the final match against Japan at the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games at Huanglong Sports Center in Hangzhou, China, at 9 p.m. on the 7th (Korea Standard Time). The national team will meet Japan in the final for the second time in a row.
It is the last game for Hwang Sun-hong’s bid for three consecutive wins in the tournament. Hwang and the team came this far with one goal: winning the championship. There was a crisis in the semifinals against Uzbekistan, but they overcame it well and reached the final. What’s left is the final match between Korea and Japan.
However, there is one thing that attracts attention, regardless of the results. It is whether Kim Jung-hoon, the only non-player goalkeeper in Hwang Sun-hong, will play or not. Hwang played six matches from the group stage to the semifinals. Only one of the 22 entries did not play in one game, or even one minute. It is goalkeeper Kim Jung-hoon. 안전놀이터
Hwang continued to operate a significant rotation from the group stage. Second-term players were hired without a built-in main. There have also been continuous matches to replace all of them. Lee Han-beom and Park Jin-seop are virtually classified as the main players for the defense, but Lee Jae-ik and Kim Tae-hyun were also given opportunities to start and replace. Song Min-gyu, who missed the first and second rounds due to injury, and Lee Kang-in, who joined late, are also playing steadily in the group stage.
However, the situation is different for the goalkeeper position. The goalkeeper is not easy to replace. Hwang Sun-hong’s main goalkeeper is Lee Kwang-yeon. He started five games. And in the third round of the group stage, which confirmed its advance to the round of 16, Hwang put forward goalkeeper Min Sung-joon. Even after the tournament began, Hwang’s choice was made by main goalkeeper Lee Kwang-yeon.
There was a similar case in the national team led by Hong Myung-bo during the 2012 London Olympics. Defender Kim Ki-hee (Ulsan) was replaced by Koo Ja-cheol (Jeju United) in the 44th minute of the second half in the third place match after never being given a chance to play. The national team won the bronze medal because of the Military Manpower Administration’s guidelines that “you have to play at least a minute in the competition to receive military service benefits.” Eventually, Kim Ki-hee received military service benefits.
However, according to the later revised law, the phrase “in the case of team events, only players who actually participated” has disappeared. Even if the statute is alive, Kim Jung-hoon is a “military officer” who was discharged from the military in December last year. He is a goalkeeper for Jeonbuk this season. It is unclear whether Kim Jung-hoon will suddenly get a chance to play in the final. If Lee Kwang-yeon plays full time, Kim Jung-hoon is unlikely to appear in the future with a medal around his neck without participating for a single minute.