2018 Asian Games SoccerOn September 1, Korea and Japan faced off in various sports competitions for the 2018 Asian Games. Park’s success with Vietnam has sparked similar scenes in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and elsewhere when he took the national team to the final of Asia’s under-23 championship in January. At the Asian Games in Indonesia , another Under-23 tournament, Vietnam’s so-called Golden Stars have reached the last four and once more fans at home are getting excited.
And ultimately, it’s this willingness to be special — and, conversely, that unwillingness to accept the limits of what a Korean footballer should be — that has forced him to attend these 2018 Asian Games in the first place. He didn’t play for medal-winning Korean sides at the Olympics and the Asian Games when he was the proper age because he was too good for his age group. Instead, he wanted to become the best footballer he could and play for the best clubs that he could. He wanted to make it in the Bundesliga and the Champions League.
South Korea were originally paired with Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia and Bahrain in Group E, but the Asian Football Confederation recently said it will conduct a group stage draw again after it omitted the United Arab Emirates and Palestine in the previous draw. This will increase the number of participating nations in the men’s football competition at the Asian Games from 24 to 26.
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