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PSG wants Lee Kang-in to play in Champions League

Posted September. 16, 2023 08:08,   

Updated September. 16, 2023 08:08


Lee Kang-in, a player from Paris Saint-Germain and a member of the football team for the Hangzhou Asian Games, is anticipated to participate starting from the third match in the tournament's group stage.

“We have concluded discussions with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) concerning the timing of Lee Kang-in’s participation,” the Korea Football Association stated on Friday. “He will join the Asian Games national team after PSG completes its first match in the UEFA Champions League group stage.” PSG is scheduled to play its inaugural match of the Champions League group stage against Dortmund (Germany) in Paris, France, at 4:00 a.m. on Wednesday, according to Korean time. It's worth noting that, unlike the World Cup or Asian Cup, the Asian Games do not require club teams to release their players. Therefore, the Korea Football Association has been engaged in ongoing discussions with PSG to determine the appropriate timing for Lee Kang-in’s selection.

Lee, expected to arrive in Hangzhou, China on Thursday, is likely to make his debut in the third match of the Asian Games group stage. Korea, placed in Group E, will kick off their campaign against Kuwait on Tuesday, followed by a match against Thailand on Thursday and another against Bahrain on Sept. 24. While the opening ceremony for the Hangzhou Asian Games is scheduled for Sept. 23, the soccer tournament begins four days earlier, on Tuesday. “Lee Kang-in will reach Hangzhou on the same day as the second group stage game, and considering time zone differences and his physical condition, it’s likely he will start playing from the third match,” an official from the Korea Football Association explained. Hwang Seon-hong, coach of the Asian Games national soccer team, expressed his hope that Lee would be available for selection as early as the first or second group-stage games. It’s worth noting that Lee, who sustained a leg muscle injury at the end of last month, was not included in the national soccer team led by coach Jurgen Klinsmann for the two-game international match against England in September.

The national team, aiming to secure its third consecutive Asian Games title, is scheduled to depart for China on Saturday.