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“Bite into Opponent`s Defect“

Posted December. 04, 2001 09:35,   


"There is no perfect team in the world."

People pick the Brazilian team from the 1970 Mexico World Cup as the strongest team in the World Cup history, because the team possessed the world-best members such as Tostao, Rivelino, Jairzinho, Gerson as well as Pele who had tuned the teamwork for more than five years.

However, such a strong Brazilian team had much trouble to pass the first round, winning a bitter fight against Rumania at 3-2, and it won a 4-2 painstaking victory over Peru even in the quarter finals.

"Ball is rolling, and even strongest team has a defect."

Portugal, Poland and USA, which Korea will face in the first round of next year`s World Cup, are the teams that have been evaluated to be superior to the Korean team by objective standards such as in the FIFA rankings. However, every team has its own weakness. Therefore, there would be no better way to advance to semi-quarter finals than exploring and making use of the opponent`s weakness.

For Korea`s first opponent Poland, Olisadebe is both a strength and a weakness. Poland achieved a big success in the regional qualifiers by naturalizing Nigeria-born Olisadebe in order to solve the poor scoring ability. But experts analyzed that it would be the weakness of the Polish team to exclusively depend upon him alone.

Therefore, it is the most crucial task to tie up Olisadebe, who scored 60 percent of team`s goals, scoring 10 goals in 13 A-class matches as a Poland national team member. Although Korea had succeeded to immobilize Diego Maradona using 6 exclusive defenders alternatively in game with Argentine in the 1986 Mexico World Cup, it lost the game because of unguarded other players. However, the situation is different for Poland. With exclusive guard against Olisadebe, the Korean team will be able to annihilate over half of Poland`s offensive power.

Regarding Kriszalowicz, one of two tops with Olisadebe, Korea`s defender Shim Jae-Won, who are playing in Frankfurt, Germany, said that "If we can stop Olisadebe, Kriszalowicz will shrink because he has a narrow range of activity with slow speed."

Korea`s second must-win opponent USA possess 12 players playing in European leagues including 6 England professional leaguers. All of these players play soccer in powerful and speedy European style. In particular, the 1994 and 1998 World Cup participants, Earnie Stewart and Joe Max Moore lead the offensive line. But the USA team has a weakness in a straight defensive line formed by four defenders such as Jeff Agoos, David Regis, Eddie Pope, and Carlos Llamosa.

Kwon Soon-Il stt77@donga.com