Korea Gears up for Crucial Match Against Germany

  • By Chang Min-seok, Joo Hyung-sik

    June 27, 2018 11:08

    Korea is gearing up for its last chance to advance to the next round in the World Cup in Russia after two defeats earlier against Sweden and Mexico.

    Korea faces Germany at a match in Kazan on Wednesday. In order for Korea to advance, it needs to beat Germany by two goals or more, under the premise that Mexico beats Sweden at the same time in Yekaterinburg.

    Korean footballers arrive in a hotel in Kazan, Russia on Tuesday. /Newsis

    At a press conference on Tuesday, midfielder Ju Se-jong expressed the team's desperation for a victory, ahead of the crucial match.

    "In sports, athletes embrace the challenge even with a one-percent possibility. We will do our best to seize this opportunity given to us, even if we are heavily underdogs," he said.

    Son Heung-min scored Korea's first and only goal at the end of the match against Mexico last week, giving the team a glimmer of hope. Germany's last-minute victory over Sweden also gave Korea a slim chance of moving on to the round of 16.

    Korean footballers move for training in St. Petersburg, Russia on Monday.

    Captain Ki Sung-yung who left the stadium in crutches after the match against Mexico, appeared at training on Monday and Tuesday to encourage his teammates.

    Ki, who apparently didn't feel comfortable staying back given that it would be his last World Cup, sat on the bench and watched his teammates train. Ki gave his all against Mexico, wrestling with opponents to win balls. Even after he was injured in the second half he had to remain on the field as Korea ran out of substitutes.

    Ki has to skip the crucial match due to the injury, but he will be on the bench cheering on his teammates. "Don't be scared of Germany. We just need to play our football," Ki told his fellow team members.

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