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“The Gold Cup Is Ours“

Posted January. 09, 2002 09:13,   


"Victory is our definite goal." (Guus Hiddink, head coach of the Korean national soccer team)

"People are thirsting for victory, but players are also dying to win." (Yoo Sang Chul, member of the Korean national soccer team)

On the 8th, the Korean national soccer team left for the U. S. to participate in the 2002 North-Central America Gold Cup. On the day of the departure, the atmosphere of the team was bright and confident more than ever. Players were confident about the 16 rounds in the World Cup in contrast to past displays of anxiety when the press and fans predicted success.

The frontline defender Song Jong-Guk said, "For some reason, I believe we will make the final 16 this time.", and Lee Chun-Soo added with confidence, "I`ll be the one scoring for the final 16." Such enthusiasm and confidence reveal the sense of trust among the players and faith in the coach.

Excluding the ones playing in Europe, the team consists of 25 members currently playing for the domestic and Japanese leagues. It will settle at the base camp in San Diego, U. S., have a practice match with a local professional team LA Galaxy after moving to Los Angeles, and finally play in the Gold Cup that starts on the 19th.

The match is to be held on the 20th with the U. S. team, who is in the same World Cup group. The U. S. team will not have its European best players making it half-minor, but the Korean players will fight with all their might. Korea will play its second match in the group with comparatively weak Cuba on 24th, so the 8th round is expected to be easy.

Korea is scheduled to settle at camp in San Diego again following the Gold Cup, and leave for Uruguay on February 14 to play the national team after having another match with Honduras.

Keuk-In Bae bae2150@donga.com