South Korean football coach Shin Tae-yong said Monday his side have the perfect preparations for the FIFA U-20 World Cup as they enter the final stretch to get ready for the tournament at home.
Shin, who took over the under-20 national football team last December, said South Korea will not disappoint home fans at the U-20 World Cup, which kicks off on Saturday. At the 24-team FIFA tournament, the young Taeguk Warriors are in Group A with Guinea, Argentina and England.
"We have very good teamwork and the players' fitness looks to be good," Shin said at the National Football Center in Paju, north of Seoul, after having a group photo session before entering the U-20 World Cup. "I don't feel much pressure about the tournament. I believe we can get good results."
Shin, who previously led South Korea at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympic Games, said this time he is confident that the national team will show a good performance because their process for preparing for the U-20 World Cup has been perfect.
"We were able to call up the player 10 days ahead of our original schedule, thanks to universities and football clubs," he said. "It gave the players time to improve their stamina and helped me to organize the team step by step."
Shin said his side now even feels comfortable preparing for the U-20 World Cup.
"We had three tune-up matches, but no players have picked up injuries," he said. "If we played the friendlies without having enough preparation time, we probably would have had some injured players."
Shin's side beat Saudi Arabia 3-1 and blanked Uruguay 2-0 in U-20 World Cup tune-up matches last week before picking up a 2-2 draw with Senegal. All three of South Korea's opponents are also participants in the U-20 World Cup.
"We tried not to show all our tactics in the friendlies because our opponents at the World Cup will find out our plans," he said. "However, we do need to fix some problems before entering the World Cup."
South Korea will open the tournament with Guinea on Saturday in Jeonju, before welcoming Argentina three days later at the same venue. They will face England on May 26 in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province, for their final group match.
Shin, 46, said he will start analyzing Guinea from tomorrow, but lamented that they don't have enough data on the African opponents.
"It's difficult to find video of Guinea's friendly matches," he said. "But I think they're similar to Senegal, so we must be aware of the quickness of their strikers." (Yonhap)