94 After Hiroshima nightmare, coach Hwang Sun-hong challenges Uzbekistan’s appetite [Hangzhou AG]

South Korean soccer faces tough Uzbekistan in Asian Games quarterfinals
Painful memories of 0-1 semifinal loss at 1994 Hiroshima under Hwang
Biggest challenge of three straight Asian Games losses, winner faces Japan-Hong Kong winner in Sunday’s final
After upsetting hosts China to reach the semifinals, Hwang’s team faces a tough opponent in Uzbekistan in the final.

China’s U-24 Asian Games men’s football team will face Uzbekistan in the men’s football semifinals of the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games on Thursday at 9 p.m. (KST)메이저사이트 at the Huanglong Sports Center Stadium in Hangzhou, China.

Hwang Sun-hong’s men’s soccer team is looking to win a third straight Asian Games title.

After scoring 16 goals without conceding in the group stage against Kuwait (9-0), Thailand (4-0) and Bahrain (3-0), the Korean team followed that up with a 5-1 win over Kyrgyzstan in the round of 16 and a 2-0 quarterfinal victory over overwhelming hosts China.

While Hwang has a tremendous spear, having scored 23 goals in the quarterfinals, Uzbekistan has a solid defense that has conceded just two goals in four games.

With Europeans like Lee Kang-in (PSG), Jung Woo-young (Stuttgart), and Hong Hyun-seok (Hent), and a senior national team-quality lineup that includes Baek Seung-ho, Song Min-gyu (Jeonbuk), Seol Young-woo, and Uhm Won-sang (Ulsan), South Korea will look to dominate the game with their potent offense, but don’t let your guard down.

Unlike other national teams in Asia that have struggled against East Asian nations such as South Korea and Japan and Middle Eastern powers such as Iran and Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan has been a consistent performer at this age group.

In fact, they have been very competitive at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-23 Asian Cup, winning in 2018, finishing fourth in 2020, and runner-up last year. They also drew 1-1 with South Korea in an exhibition match in Hwaseong last September.

Five years ago, the two teams met in the quarterfinals of the Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games, where South Korea’s soccer was tormented. South Korea won 4-3 in extra time, and if it wasn’t for a hat-trick of ‘hard carries’ from Hwang Eui-jo (Norwich City), they might have settled for a bronze medal.

Hwang Seon-hong-ho secured his place in the semi-finals with a brace. ⓒ Korea Football Association
South Korea already has a bad taste in its mouth against Uzbekistan at the Asian Games.

After knocking out home team Japan in the quarterfinals of the 1994 Hiroshima Games, Korea was stunned by Uzbekistan in the semifinals. They outplayed and outplayed Uzbekistan throughout the match, but a surprise mid-range shot from the top of the box led to a 0-1 loss.

The starting striker for the national team was Hwang Sun-hong, the current head coach of the team. For Hwang, who has bitter memories of the Uzbekistan encounter, this quarterfinal matchup will be his first in 29 years.

They are now just two steps away from the title. If they defeat Uzbekistan, they will play the winner of the match between Japan and Hong Kong on July 7 at 9 p.m. in the final.

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