Loyalty! ‘Armed Forces Day’ Corporal Cho Young-wook…”It’s more daunting to hear the national anthem in China, and the judgment is neat”
Hwangseon Hongho striker Cho Young-wook (Gimcheon Commerce), who was promoted to corporal on Armed Forces Day, said he was even more excited to hear the national anthem in Chinese territory. As for the referee’s decision, he was satisfied that it was clean.
Head coach Hwang Sun-hong’s men’s football team defeated host China 2-0 in the men’s football quarterfinals of the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games at the Huanglong Sports Center Stadium in Hangzhou, China, on Monday (June 1), thanks to consecutive goals from Hong Hyun-seok and Song Min-gyu. With the victory, the team overcame the pre-match concerns about their combative style of play and will now face ‘favorites’ Uzbekistan in the quarterfinals.스포츠토토
The national team benched Lee Kang-in, who had started the previous two games, in favor of a 4-3-3, with Lee Kwang-yeon (Gangwon) in goal and Hwang Jae-won (Daegu), Park Jin-seop (Jeonbuk), Lee Han-beom (Mittwilan), and Park Kyu-hyun (Dresden) forming the back four. Hong Hyun-seok (Ghent), Baek Seung-ho (Jeonbuk), and Ko Young-joon (Pohang) played in the center. Up front, Cho Young-wook (Gimcheon) was in the center, flanked by Ahn Jae-joon (Bucheon) and Song Min-gyu (Jeonbuk).
Before the game, there were concerns about China’s rough soccer and the lack of a VAR. However, the national team showed a marked difference in quality and embarrassed Chinese soccer in front of 50,000 fans.
In the 18th minute, Belgian top-flight midfielder Hong Hyun-seok scored a free-kick goal to silence the 50,000 Chinese fans. Hwang Jae-won was fouled on the right side of the penalty area while attacking. Baek Seung-ho and Hong Hyun-seok stood in front of the ball, and Hong’s long left-footed free kick rattled the top right corner of the Chinese goal. It was a goal Han Zhaqi knew he couldn’t stop.
After the goal, Hong Hyun-seok performed a hissing gesture to silence the Chinese crowd, sending Korean soccer fans into a frenzy. China managed to hold on with their defensive-minded formation, but they were unable to stop Hong’s knife-edge free kick and were left flustered.
China were completely disorganized after the 35th-minute goal. Ahn Jae-joon played a forward pass to Cho Young-wook, who was breaking down the right flank, and his crossing pass found its way between Han Zhiqi and the Chinese defense. Han Jachi-chan struck the ball away from Cho Young-wook, but the ball rattled the goal as it touched the right foot of the onrushing Song Min-gyu.
Song put his hands over his ears and performed the “I can’t hear you” gesture. China showed early signs of collapse, with goalkeeper Han Zhiqi and defenders shouting at each other. The Chinese came out more aggressive in the second half, but the Koreans, led by substitute Lee Kang-in, dominated the game and completely broke down China’s fighting style of soccer.
October 1, the day of the China game, was Armed Forces Day in South Korea. Cho Young-wook, who competed in the tournament as a soldier, was promoted to corporal on that day. As a soldier protecting South Korea and a soccer player representing South Korea, he must have been especially motivated to play against China.
When he met with the media in the post-match mix zone, he greeted them with a sword-like salute. “I thought it would be a difficult game, but fortunately, the first goal went in well, so I’m glad it wasn’t as difficult as I was worried,” he said, adding, “We’ll meet Uzbekistan now. We will recover well and prepare well.” He also revealed that the match against China was easier than expected.
He also shared his thoughts on becoming a corporal. “I heard that my teammates haven’t reported yet,” he laughed, “but I’m wearing a corporal’s medal, and it feels good to win the game on Armed Forces Day.” “I know that my team Gimcheon also won before the game. I feel good in many ways,” he said.
On hearing the national anthem in front of nearly 50,000 fans at his home stadium in China, he said, “Not only today, but every time I hear the national anthem at an international tournament or abroad, I feel a lot of excitement.” “Especially today, with so many opposing fans here, it was a little different to hear the national anthem,” he added.
The refereeing, which had been a concern, was clean. “I think China’s play was about what we expected,” Cho said, but he smiled, “Fortunately, the referee was so clean that we didn’t have any major problems.”
“Actually, the players were a little worried beforehand, so we weren’t too shaken up. It was unfortunate that the women’s national team had a refereeing controversy the day before,” he said, also offering his sympathies to the women’s soccer team, who lost to North Korea in the quarterfinals due to a bias call.