At the 2023 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Qatar Asian Cup final draw held at the Qatar Opera Hall in Doha, Qatar on the 11th, Korea expects to receive the best results. While various scenarios coexist, it is quite possible that coach Jurgen Klinsmann will play the ‘Korean Derby’ from the group stage, drawing attention.
The tournament will feature 24 teams divided into 6 groups. Korea was in pot 1 along with host country Qatar, Japan, Iran, Australia and Saudi Arabia.
In fact, the prevailing opinion is that it is not difficult to pass the group stage if it is as strong as Korea. There are some Middle Eastern countries who are concerned about pots 2 and 3, but Korea has completely broken the Middle East jinx through the final Asian qualifiers for the World Cup in Qatar.
Rather, the concern is the teams in pot 4, which are classified as the weakest. Thailand, the strongest country in Southeast Asia, stands out, but what attracts more attention is the teams with Korean coaches at the command tower.
Indonesia, led by director Shin Tae-yong, is the most representative. Shin, who has a contract until December of this year, is currently negotiating with the Indonesia Football Association (PSSI) to renew the contract. If the new coach does not renew the contract, he will not be able to take the Indonesian helm at the Asian Cup, which will be held in January next year. Right-back Asnawi, who is currently playing for the K-League 2 Jeonnam Dragons, is playing an active part in the national team, which has produced many meaningful results since the new coach took office.
Malaysia’s manager Kim Pan-gon is holding the baton. Coach Kim, who took office as Malaysian coach in January last year, was recognized for his leadership by leading Malaysia to the Asian Cup finals. Malaysia had participated in the 2007 tournament as a co-host, but it was the first time in 43 years that it had advanced through the preliminaries. In particular, before coming to Malaysia, coach Kim served as the head of the Korea Football Association’s National Team Strengthening Committee. Since I know the national team situation better than anyone else, it is difficult for Korea as well. 스포츠토토
On the other hand, Hong Kong, which is classified as the weakest team in pot 4, deserves attention as it is led by John Andersen, who served as manager of K-League Incheon United in the past. Andersen was recognized for his leadership by leading Hong Kong to the Asian Cup finals for the first time in 55 years. Although he is a foreign leader, he has a lot of ties with Korea, so attention is focused on whether or not they will face each other.