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Shin Tae-yong leads Korea’s victory over defending champion Germany

Shin Tae-yong leads Korea’s victory over defending champion Germany

Posted June. 29, 2018 07:35,   

Updated June. 29, 2018 07:35


“I feel good, but a little bit empty. I spoke of the fighting spirit to the players because I wanted to make the best of the 1 percent chance to win,” said Shin Tae-yong, manager of Korea’s national football team after winning 2-0 over Germany on Thursday. “We expected to catch Germany off guard and our strategy of preparing in reverse to what Germany would do worked.”

A day before the match, however, Shin made an announcement quite unexpected of a team leader. “Even if we build up our team work, it won’t be easy to win Germany.” Korean football player Son Heung-min, who attended the press meeting with Shin, appeared to be taken back at his leader’s suggestion of defeat. “We were confused by his words. But later on he told us that it was a trick to lower Germany’s guard,” said goal keeper Cho Hyun-woo.

Some said that the counterpart was less intimidating and Germany’s performance was not up to par, asking whether the victory was a lucky one. “We won, so our plan worked. We analyzed the performance of the German team, adopting a 4-4-2 formation in strike but switching to 5-4-1 formation in defense. “The players did well. Possession was weaker, but we believed that we had a chance,” he said. “We thought that Germany would be under pressure, which we could leverage as a weak point and help us win. Those strategies worked.”

So far, no coach leader has seen a renewed contract after the national team failed the tournament. The public has responded well to the Korea team’s victory over Germany, but many point out that the Korea Football Association needs to undergo a major shift, hinting the KFA could recruit a new director for innovation. In this light, it is quite unlikely that Shin’s contract would be renewed.

Jong-Koo Yang yjongk@donga.com