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Yellow Card Emergency

Posted March. 25, 2004 22:40,   


“No more yellow cards!”

Korea’s Olympic Soccer team won its third straight match by beating Malaysia in group A of the Athens Olympic preliminary in Malaysia on March 24. But the joy was short lived. The ambience of the team became restless because of many yellow cards.

Kim Chi-gon (Seoul), Jo Byoung-gook and Jo Jae-jin (Suwon) received yellow cards in the game. Jo Jae-jin, who got two yellow cards, and Kim, who already received a yellow card in the match against Iran on February 17, will not be able to join in the game against Malaysia on April 14 due to cumulative cards.

Coach Kim Ho-gon (53 years old) said, “Since Kim Chi-gon already had a yellow card, it is good for him not to be able to take part in the home game against Malaysia.” However it is shocking that Jo Jae-jin with 2 goals and 1 assist will be sent off.

Park Yong-ho (Seoul) was sentenced with a yellow card in the game against China on February 3, Choi Seong-gook (Ulsan), Kim Dong-jin (Seoul) and Kim Chi-gon were in the game against Iran on February 17. Accordingly Coach Kim hoped that players who had already one would receive yellow cards if the cards have to be. He thought that it would be all right even though some of them can’t participate in the game against Malaysia on their home ground. In this case, they can play in the game against “power” China without any pressure. Choi Seong-gook, Park Yong-ho and Kim Dong-jin didn’t receive any cards but, unexpectedly, Jo Jae-jin was sent off with two yellow cards.

“I told players not to receive yellow cards afterwards,” said coach Kim. “I will find somebody who can replace Jo Jae-jin and Kim Chi-gon, who are cores of our attack and defense, in plenty of time for the next match against Malaysia.”

Korea is scheduled to play a home game against Malaysia on April 14, a road game against China in Changsa on May 1, and a home game against Iran as a final match on May 12. With three wins (nine points), Korea leads the group among Iran (one win and one loss, three points), China (one draw and one loss, one point), and Malaysia (one draw and two losses, one point) But maintaining first place to advance to the Olympics can be ambiguous according to the following results of Iran and China which have played one less game than Korea. Therefore Korea has to gather a “best 11” without any loss of capability in their matches against China and Iran.

Meanwhile, the Olympic team will break up as soon as they return to Korea on March 26. It will be called up again on April 4 and will play in the exhibition game against Iraq in Seoul World-Cup Stadium on April 6.

Soon-Il Kwon stt77@donga.com