South Korea’s captain, Son Heung-min, faces defensive hurdles in the Asian Cup, but coach Juergen Klinsmann remains optimistic about his performance. Despite being a prominent figure in the Premier League, Son has encountered tight defenses, securing only one goal, a penalty, in a 2-2 draw with Jordan.
Klinsmann addressed the challenges, stating, “Son will always get special attention in this tournament because he plays in the Premier League; it’s a normal process.” He emphasized opponents’ defensive strategies, with multiple players closing in on Son when he possesses the ball.
The coach acknowledged the defensive approach not only towards Son but also Lee Kang-in of Paris St Germain. Klinsmann expressed confidence in Son’s ability to navigate these challenges, stating, “Sonny knows how to deal with that; he knows he can find space.”
As South Korea aims for a top-two finish in the group, Klinsmann highlighted the need for improvement, stating, “We’re ready for this difficult game against Malaysia, we respect them. We’ve done our homework and scouting.”
Regarding Malaysia’s South Korean coach, Kim Pan-gon, Klinsmann acknowledged his familiarity with the South Korean team but emphasized the importance of approaching the game with the right mindset and respecting the opponent.
The upcoming match against Malaysia holds significance for South Korea, and Klinsmann emphasized the team’s focus on the immediate challenge without looking ahead to the knockout stages. Despite the team’s readiness for the upcoming game, Klinsmann acknowledged the need to meet expectations and play better.
As Son Heung-min seeks to make a greater impact in the tournament, Klinsmann remains hopeful that the star player will find opportunities to contribute effectively in the upcoming matches.