Son's South Korea in football final after Vietnam win

Posted September 03, 2018

Tottenham Hotspur striker Son Heung-min, who is captaining South Korea as one of the over-aged players in the under-23 competition, is one win away from gaining exemption from mandatory military service. Kim is very good tactically and is considered the Alex Ferguson of the K League.

Almost every able-bodied South Korean male is required to carry out 21 months of military service before the age of 28, although the government rewards Asian Games gold medals and Olympic medals of any colour with an exemption. "We will try to play an attractive and spectacular semifinal", said Park.

Park Ji-Sung - once of Manchester United - escaped his altogether as he was part of the South Korea side that was given special dispensation after they reached the semi-finals of the 2002 World Cup. "I think we are better players so we dominated the game".

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Son said neither he nor his team mates felt any pressure.

Defeat in the final, and Son could be joining the list of South Korean nationals to have served in the military, although some of his fellow professionals have managed to avoid such a fate.

Although a gold medal at the Asian Games and any medal at the Olympics result in exemption, the KFA source told ESPN FC there is no such agreement for football tournaments. He also missed South Korea's opener here and only went on as a replacement in a surprising group-stage loss to Malaysia.

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Iran's Mohammad Jamshidijafarabadi (2nd R) shoots against Japan in the men's basketball quarter-final match between Iran and Japan during the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta on August 27, 2018.

Now Son and teammates are in the position of having to beat a determined and disciplined Vietnam team coached by a man who knows Korean soccer extremely well. I'm trying to make my country happy, make myself happy.

All that stands between South Korea and the gold medal is a win over fierce rivals Japan and while Son was reluctant to talk too much about the prospect of winning a military exemption he was in no doubt as to the importance of rounding out the tournament with the victory. "I emphasize that it's not about me, but it's about us".

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