Posted January. 27, 2015 07:05,
Koreas advance to the final at the Asian Cup for the first time in 27 years has given Korean soccer a chance for a twist and stride. Korea remains the only team that has had no loss in this years event.
This feat has been achieved, despite exit of key players including Lee Chung-yong, and Koo Ja-cheol who ended the tournaments due to injury. Not only the national team but also Korean soccer as a whole has regained all the more solid confidence.
If Korea acquires the championship title for the first time in 55 years, Korean soccer, which started to get back on track after hitting rock bottom, will be able to take off. Winning the Asian Cup holds symbolic meaning that the winner is the best in Asia. Unexpected outcomes used to occur as the championship was held in the tournament method from the quarterfinals. But if Korea wins the title this year, all the countries will have to admit that Korea is the best in Asia, said soccer commentator Han Joon-hee at KBS.
Korea has also secured the extra benefit of an advance in the FIFA rankings. As of January, Korea stands at 69th in the FIFA ranking, and ranks third in Asia, trailing Iran (51st) and Japan (54th). If Team Korea clinches this year`s Asian Cup, Korea can emerge as the top in Asia surpassing Iran. In addition, Korean team is invited to participate in the Confederation Cub in 2017, which enables the team to play at World Cup stadiums in advance.
If Korea garners both the championship title and top spot in Asia in the FIFA rankings, changes in Korean soccer pursued by Coach Uli Stielike will also accelerate. The result of the Asian Cup is expected to influence not only on the Korean national team but also on Korean soccer as a whole this year. Coach Stielike can play a central role in changing overall systems in the Korean soccer community including teenagers soccer, said KBSN soccer commentator Kim Dae-gil. Coach Stielike is in the process of examining Korean soccer and changing it. If Korea rises to the top place in the Asian Cup, Coach Stielike who is preparing for the 2018 World Cup in Russia can solidify his presence in Korean soccer, Han also said.