Monday, June 23, 2014

Group: Algeria Recap

Well that was disappointing wasn't it?  Just about every weak point I've pointed out so far was exploited from JSR's poor judgement, Lee Yong getting overrun on the right, and Koo wasting possession with poor play.  And Algeria was just so impressive with their drive and effort.

Korea also lost the physical battle in back and it was just too easy. Kim Young Gwon and Hong Jeong Ho may have the potential to be good CHs, but together they were a disaster. No communication only compounded the fact that they were outmuscled all match.  Lee Yong and Han Kook Young only made things worse as they didn't have the pace to track back or ability to disrupt Algeria's strong attack.

Algeria came out strong and Korea looked surprised by the initiative that Algeria took in attacking.  The direct route that Algeria took for two of the three first half goals comes down to basic battles and our defense did not survive.  Things were not helped by Jung Sung Ryong totally misjudging an aerial ball and giving Algeria an open header for the second goal.

I think just as problematic was our inability to do anything with the ball when we did get it back.  Zero shots in the first half was just so disappointing.  Ki was pinned deep to help our defense, and that put to the focus on Koo Ja Cheol and he failed miserably.  Yes we would get the second goal but he was so wasteful.

So where does that leave Korea?  Fortunately we're not out of it and we should be facing a second string Belgium.  Bad news is that there was lots of energy spent just to get it back to a reasonable score line from a goal differential perspective and recovery, not major changes, will dominate the week.

What changes would I make?  I think the first would be to move Koo to the DM role.  HKY was so poor that the decrease in defensive capability will be noticed.  And subtracting Koo out of the offensive flow will be a plus.

Although Kim Shin Wook was impressive coming on, would he do the same vs. say Kompany?  Also while KSW's aerial prowess was impressive, he still failed to really threaten goal.  And struggled to contribute outside that.  Not sure we have another option though.

And I'd move Son to the hole where he doesn't have to contribute defensively and simply be the excellent attacker he was on Sunday.  Yes his first touch was a bit sloppy but his speed and cutting were dangerous.

Then I'd move Ji to the left.  He's smarter than Son and I think would contribute a large dose of fluidity to the attack.


Jung Sung Ryung - 2 - Wow he was bad.  Misjudged the second goal so poorly he could barely get a finger on the ball.  And couldn't stop anything else despite some of the finishes being savable.

Lee Yong - 2 - The concerns I had over this guy were on display.  He provided nothing going forward and virtually nothing going back.

Kim Young Kwon - 3 - Actually I thought he was the worst of the two CHs today.  He needed to step up to take charge and instead he stayed silent and let Algeria run free.  He also should have been called for a PK on top of doing about nothing else.

Hong Jeong Ho - 4 - He tried but I'm just not certain he has the physical tools to be a World Cup caliber CH.  Ball-playing is a bonus for a CH, not a prerequisite.

Yun Suk Young -5 - Since Algeria were abusing Lee Yong on the other side, he managed to do ok and threatened a few times.

Han Kook Young - 2 - He was either passing to Algeria or missing tackles and assignments in defense.  He and Lee Yong just left our entire right side exposed

Ki Sung Yueng - 6 - Probably would have rated higher but letting his marker go for the fourth goal was just bad, even if he expected help.  Smooth as always but positioned so far back as to have minimal impact.  When he drove forward and shot, you just wished that he had been pressing forward all match.

Lee Chung Yong - 4 - So disappointing.  He couldn't beat anyone on the dribble and looked lost out there.  Couldn't handle the no-nonsense physicality of the Algerian defense.

Koo Ja Cheol - 2 - I'm surprised that he's remained in the starting lineup.  He's been so poor.  Yes he scored a goal but he disrupted every attack with bad passes and decisions.

Son Heung Min - 7 - The best Korean on the pitch, he left his heart out there even when he wasn't the sharpest he's been.  His incredible number of dribbles reflects both his lack of help in attack and also his willingness to take the team's offensive burden and go.

Park Chu Young - 2 - I wouldn't have realized he had played except for his bad passes back.

Kim Shin Wook - 6 - So immense in the air but he couldn't help out otherwise.

Lee Keun Ho - 5 - So close to making a huge impact but just couldn't do it.

Ji Dong Won - 5 - Had a nifty shot deflected just wide but on too short to have a major impact.