Korea Republic national team manager Cho Kwang-Rae announced his 23-man squad ahead of the friendly against Iran next week.
Suwon midfielder Kim Du-Hyeon, who has been left out of the national team picture since the East Asian Championship in January, will return after having recovered from a knee injury. The 28 year-old has been an integral part of Suwon’s recent success in winning seven of its last eight matches.
Bolton Wanderers winger Lee Chung-Yong will also make the trip back home from England and suit up for Cho for the first time. Lee had stayed in Bolton and missed the friendly against Nigeria earlier this month after demanding that he needed more time to settle at the club to start the English Premier League season.
Also joining from Europe is Ajax Amsterdam prospect Suk Hyun-Jun. The 19 year-old striker who has yet to score for Ajax’s senior squad in a competitive match has been in excellent scoring form in pre-season as well as reserves matches and earned his first call-up to the national team. The curiosity among fans, about whether or not the youngster would make the final cut, has been rising after he was included in last week’s provisional squad.
The most surprising selection of all, however, is defender Kim Ju-Young who played under Cho at Gyeongnam FC in the last two seasons. Having ranked among top three in the league for the entirety of this season in goals conceded, Gyeongnam have become one of the best defensive sides with the 22 year-old at the heart of its three-man back-line, a system which Cho is trying to implement on the national team after being appointed this summer.
Kim Jae-Sung, Baek Ji-Hoon, Ji Dong-Won, and Lee Seung-Ryul were dropped from the squad.
# National team squad — friendly vs. Iran (Sept. 7)
GK — Kim Young-Kwang (Ulsan), Jung Sung-Ryong (Seongnam)
DF — Cho Yong-Hyung (Al Rayyan), Kwak Tae-Hwi (Kyoto), Lee Jung-Soo (Al Sadd), Kim Young-Kwon (FC Tokyo), Hong Jung-Ho (Jeju United), Kim Ju-Young (Gyeongnam), Lee Young-Pyo (Al Hilal), Choi Hyo-Jin (FC Seoul), Cha Du-Ri (Celtic), Park Joo-Ho (Jubilo Iwata)
MF — Ki Sung-Yong (Celtic), Kim Jung-Woo (Gwangju), Kim Du-Hyeon (Suwon), Yoon Bitgaram (Gyeongnam), Lee Chung-Yong (Bolton), Kim Bo-Kyung (Oita Trinita), Park Ji-Sung (Manchester United), Yeom Ki-Hoon (Suwon), Cho Young-Cheol (Niigata)
FW — Park Ju-Young (AS Monaco), Suk Hyun-Jun (Ajax)