Korea plays familiar post World Cup game

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Korea plays familiar post World Cup game

By John Duerden

It is a tradition in many countries to look for a new national team coach at the end of a World Cup. After all, this is the end of a soccer cycle and most contracts will be ending this July. South Korea is no different. Well, it is a little different.

The contract of coach Shin Tae-yong expires this month. The 49 year-old took the post last July. The 2018 World Cup was a disappointment with defeats at the hands of Sweden and Mexico only somewhat erased by a stunning 2-0 victory over defending champions Germany.

On Thursday, the Korea Football Association (KFA) held a press conference to review the World Cup and talk about the next steps. Shin's contract has not been extended yet. It may be, but first, the organization is exploring other options.

In effect, Shin will have to compete with a number of other candidates for his own job.

"We will regard Shin Tae-yong as one of the candidates, and he'll be up against other candidates being considered," Kim Pan-gon, the head of the KFA's technical committee that deals with national team issues, told reporters Thursday.

He said that the organization had a list of fewer than 10 tacticians under consideration.

"We will interview these candidates and compare each one of them with Shin before we name the coach," Kim added.

It is an unusual situation for Shin to find himself in, almost like being told to apply for his own job. Given the comments from Kim, it is likely that a new man will be hired. After all, if you are satisfied with the existing coach then you don't need to be looking elsewhere. With that in mind, it will seem a little strange if the KFA ends up backing Shin and it would probably be seen rightly or wrongly as an admission that the body can't find anyone better.

This is a game that has been played out in the Korean media on regular occasions in the past years _ to guess who the next coach will be. Luiz Felipe Scolari, the man who led Brazil to the 2002 World Cup, was the first to be mentioned but while the 69 year-old has the name, it is unlikely he is the kind of coach with the determination and the energy to really make the difference needed.

World Cup and international experience is wanted however and other names have been mentioned. These include Vahid Halilhodzic who took Algeria to the second round of the 2014 World Cup (defeating Korea 4-2 along the way) and was fired by Japan in April, former Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Manchester United boss Louis Van Gaal, and Andre Villas-Boas, ex-Chelsea and Tottenham coach.

They are all big names but there needs to be more to it than that. "We have to play an active style of football, using penetration and forward passing, with stamina at the foundation," Kim said. "And the coach should produce results that befit our national team's status."

The KFA hopes to have a full-time coach in charge for September friendly games especially with the 2019 Asian Cup kicking off in early January. The World Cup is over but there is still plenty to talk about.



By John Duerden

It is a tradition in many countries to look for a new national team coach at the end of a World Cup. After all, this is the end of a soccer cycle and most contracts will be ending this July. South Korea is no different. Well, it is a little different.

The contract of coach Shin Tae-yong expires this month. The 49 year-old took the post last July. The 2018 World Cup was a disappointment with defeats at the hands of Sweden and Mexico only somewhat erased by a stunning 2-0 victory over defending champions Germany.

On Thursday, the Korea Football Association (KFA) held a press conference to review the World Cup and talk about the next steps. Shin's contract has not been extended yet. It may be, but first, the organization is exploring other options.

In effect, Shin will have to compete with a number of other candidates for his own job.

"We will regard Shin Tae-yong as one of the candidates, and he'll be up against other candidates being considered," Kim Pan-gon, the head of the KFA's technical committee that deals with national team issues, told reporters Thursday.

He said that the organization had a list of fewer than 10 tacticians under consideration.

"We will interview these candidates and compare each one of them with Shin before we name the coach," Kim added.

It is an unusual situation for Shin to find himself in, almost like being told to apply for his own job. Given the comments from Kim, it is likely that a new man will be hired. After all, if you are satisfied with the existing coach then you don't need to be looking elsewhere. With that in mind, it will seem a little strange if the KFA ends up backing Shin and it would probably be seen rightly or wrongly as an admission that the body can't find anyone better.

This is a game that has been played out in the Korean media on regular occasions in the past years _ to guess who the next coach will be. Luiz Felipe Scolari, the man who led Brazil to the 2002 World Cup, was the first to be mentioned but while the 69 year-old has the name, it is unlikely he is the kind of coach with the determination and the energy to really make the difference needed.

World Cup and international experience is wanted however and other names have been mentioned. These include Vahid Halilhodzic who took Algeria to the second round of the 2014 World Cup (defeating Korea 4-2 along the way) and was fired by Japan in April, former Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Manchester United boss Louis Van Gaal, and Andre Villas-Boas, ex-Chelsea and Tottenham coach.

They are all big names but there needs to be more to it than that. "We have to play an active style of football, using penetration and forward passing, with stamina at the foundation," Kim said. "And the coach should produce results that befit our national team's status."

The KFA hopes to have a full-time coach in charge for September friendly games especially with the 2019 Asian Cup kicking off in early January. The World Cup is over but there is still plenty to talk about.



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