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Japan, Korea Face Off in Soccer Tourney

Posted December. 03, 2005 04:48,   


The Second Denso Korea and Japan College Soccer Cup (co-hosted by Dong-A Ilbo and Asahi Shimbun) will be held on December 4 at Uijeongbu Sports Complex, Gyeonggi-do. Athletes from both countries are vowing to win.

Korean college team manager Kang Young-cheol gave a formal interview on Friday at the Shinmunro soccer center in Jongno-gu, Seoul. “We learned from our defeat in October when we lost two matches to Japan in the East Asian Championship,” he said. “Now is our time to reclaim our honor.”

Kim added, “We have added nine new players to those that played in October. By doing so, we are blending ambition and experience. Our fans should expect good news.”

Japanese college team manager Inui Masahiro said, “We have spent 120 days out of one whole year in training camp. We have excellent teamwork.” The Japanese achieved their third consecutive win in August’s Izmir Universiad Games. Masahiro continued, “We have not switched members since the Universiad games. This is the best condition we can ever be in. The spirit of rivalry is always a variable in Korea-Japan games, but we are certain of adding another victory.”

The cup games started in 1997 when Korea and Japan were announced as co-hosts of the 2002 World Cup. That game turned into a regularly-scheduled series of college games between the two countries, consisting of home and away matches.

Korea trails the series with three wins and five losses.

Jong-Koo Yang yjongk@donga.com