Football at the 2018 asian games

South Korea"s forward Heung Min Son celebrates after defeating nhật bản during the men"s football gold... <+> medal match at the 2018 Asian Games in Bogor on September 1, 2018. (Phokhổng lồ by CHAIDEER MAHYUDDIN/AFP/Getty Images)

South Korea beat rivals Japan 2-1 after extra time to win the gold medal in men’s football at the 2018 Asian Games in the Indonesian cities of Jakarta & Palembang.

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Hellas Verona’s young star Lee Seung-woobroke the deadloông chồng with a strike into lớn the top corner early in extra time, & Hwang Hee-chan, who has just agreed khổng lồ join German side Hamburger SV on loan, added a second with a powerful header. Japan pulled a goal baông xã but South Korea held on khổng lồ win the gold medal.

And that gold could change the careers of the players involved as it gives them an exemption from military service.

Star striker Son Heung-min has been in the news around the world this week because of his military service predicament. Every able-bodied South Korean male has to enlist in the military, but for soccer players, the service period comes right in the middle of their careers, which can make it difficult for them lớn move sầu to lớn European clubs or force those in Europe lớn return lớn Korea.

Son and his teammates wouldn’t have been standing on the front line. Most would have sầu had the chance lớn play for Sangmu Sangju or Asan Mugunghwa, the army and police teams in South Korea’s domestic K League. Players who don’t fall into lớn the military grade for those teams, for example by not graduating from high school, often end up doing desk work & playing in the country’s semi-pro leagues.

But by winning gold in Indonesia, South Korea’s players now just have sầu khổng lồ vị their four weeks of basic training. This means that Son Heung-min can continue his career at Tottenđắm say Hotspur, và Lee Seung-woo and Hwang Hee-chan can continue their careers in Europe unhindered by military service.

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It also means that their teammates are more likely to get the chance lớn follow them khổng lồ Europe.

Goalkeeper Cho Hyun-woo was South Korea’s standout player at the 2018 World Cup, earning comparisons to Manchester United’s David de Gea. The position has been one of the South Korean national team’s weak points over the years, so if Cho can get a move lớn a stronger league và keep developing, it could really benefit the national team.

Defender Kyên ổn Min-jae & midfielder Hwang In-beom could also see a move sầu abroad after winning gold. Klặng Min-jae is a key player for the national team despite being just 21 years old, but he got injured just before the World Cup & missed out on Russia 2018. Hwang In-beom chose lớn vì chưng his military service early so that it would have less of an impact on his career. He currently plays for the police side Asan Mugunghwa, who are actually higher in the league than his previous club, but he can cut short his military service after winning gold.

Hwang In-beom has already benefited from the Asian Games. His svào performances, & those of winger Kyên Moon-hwan, caught the eye of new South Korea head coach Paulo Benkhổng lồ, earning them call-ups to lớn the full national team for the friendly matches against Costa Rica và Chile in September.

But while military exemption gives all the players a better chance of a move to Europe, not all of them will take it. South Korea won gold at the năm trước Asian Games, but out of that squad, only Holstein Kiel’s Lee Jae-sung successfully made the jump khổng lồ a different continent, & some of the Europe-based players in that squad have since returned khổng lồ the K League.

The next group of South Korean soccer players will have sầu their chance lớn earn military exemption at the 20trăng tròn Tokyo Olympics, should they qualify for the games.


I’m a football (soccer) writer who follows what’s happening in the game across the world, from Southampton to Sapporo và everywhere in between. My writing has appeared

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I’m a football (soccer) writer who follows what’s happening in the game across the world, from Southampton to Sapporo & everywhere in between. My writing has appeared in the Guardian & in many indie football magazines such as Pickles & In Bed With Maradomãng cầu. I also present a football videocast here in Seoul, và my articles have been translated into lớn Korean and Chinese. As well as watching and writing about the game, I enjoy a kickabout too. Follow me on Twitter