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Olympic Soccer Team Is “Very Busy”

Posted September. 11, 2007 03:11,   

한국어

The Korean Olympic Soccer team, which is in a good position to enter the final round of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games qualifiers thanks to two victories, including one in an away game with Bahrain on September 9, is seeking its third consecutive victory against Syria at Seoul World Cup Stadium on September 12.

If Korea beats Syria in the third game, it will reach 70 percent of its goal of advancing toward the final round after six consecutive successes.

Korea will have home-field advantage, but the Korean squad must content with a killer schedule.

The team, led by coach Park Seong-hwa, boarded a flight taking off from Bahrain at 1:20 a.m. (Korean time) on September 10. It took a total of 15 hours and 25 minutes, including a waiting period of six hours at Dubai Airport, as there is no direct flight, and they had to transfer at Dubai.

They arrived at Incheon International Airport at 4:45 p.m., only 51 hours before their game with Syria at 8:00 p.m. on September 12.

Physical fatigue from their game with Bahrain as well as exhaustion from the long flight was aggravated by six-hour jet lag. The team put down their luggage at the Mayfield Hotel in Balsan-dong, Gangseo-gu, Seoul after arriving at the airport and participated in recovery training after moving to the Paju National Football Center. They only have a single day, September 11, to fine-tune their teamwork preparing for the game with Syria.

Meanwhile, the Syrian team has an advantage. After an away game with Uzbekistan, the Syrian team arrived at Incheon International Airport at 11:10 a.m. on September 10, and stayed at the Grand Hilton Hotel in Hongeun-dong, Seodaemun-gu. Not only that, the time difference between Uzbekistan and Seoul is only four hours.

Fortunately Lee Geun-ho (Daegu FC), Choi Cheol-sun (Chonbuk Hyundai Motors), and Lee Seung-hyeon (Busan I`Park), who were excluded from the game with Bahrain due to the accumulated warnings, are in good physical shape.



kimsk@donga.com