• June 13, 2023

Son Heung-min undergoes surgery in England for hernia ‘doubtful for two A-League matches’ but will he show fight again?

South Korean football’s leading striker Son Heung-min (31, Tottenham Hotspur) has reportedly undergone a minor hernia operation. It is unclear if he will be able to play in the two upcoming A matches on the 16th and 20th of this month. For now, Son has joined the national team training and is trying to get back to full fitness.

“Son Heung-min underwent surgery for a minor sports hernia in England on 29 May, the day after his club Tottenham’s last game in the English Premier League (EPL),” an official from the Korea Football Association said on 13 May, News1 and Newsis reported.

“It’s nothing serious. Advisor Chaduri has undergone the same surgery in the past. He usually recovers within two weeks after the surgery,” the official added.

“There may be differences in recovery from person to person. There are different types of sports hernias. Heung-min Son has a relatively mild case. (National team coach Jürgen Klinsmann) was aware of his condition when he called him into the squad.”

When a hernia is out of place and pushes into a weak area of the abdominal wall, it”s called a hiatal hernia. If it’s caused by overexertion, it’s called a sports hernia. “It”s been two weeks since the surgery. Whether coach Klinsmann will send Son Heung-min to the game will be determined by the extent of his recovery.”

Klinsmann’s men will face the Peruvian national team, coached by Juan Reynoso, in an exhibition match at the Asiad Stadium in Busan on 16 June at 8pm.

Peru is regarded as the reigning champions of South American football. They are ranked 21st in the FIFA rankings, six places higher than Korea (27th). South Korea are level on points with Peru in their all-time A-match series, with one draw and one loss. The last time South Korea travelled to Peru for a friendly was in 1971, where they lost heavily 0-4. Then, 10 years ago in August 2013, a team led by then national team coach Hong Myung-bo played Peru to a goalless 0-0 draw.

It will be around three and a half years since the last time an A match was held in Busan, at the East Asian Football Confederation (EAFF) E-1 Championship in December 2019. At the time, the South Korean national team won the tournament with three wins in three games under the leadership of Paulo Bento.

After the match against Peru, the team will have three days off before facing Hugo Perez’s El Salvador in an exhibition match at Daejeon World Cup Stadium on 20 June at 8pm. The El Salvadorans are ranked 75th in the FIFA rankings, making them one step below Korea. This will be the first time South Korea have faced El Salvador.

It will be the first time South Korea has played an A match in Daejeon since June last year, when they played Chile in an exhibition match. In that match, which marked Son Heung-min’s 100th cap, South Korea won 2-0 thanks to an early goal from Hwang Hee-chan and a free-kick from Son Heung-min.

Even in an exhibition game, the difference between the team with and without Son Heung-min is bound to be significant. Furthermore, the national team’s pivotal defender Kim Min-jae will be unavailable for the trial as he has joined a military training centre for basic military training (scheduled for the 19th). However, Son Heung-min is reportedly keen to play. The national team convened the day before (12 December) to train at Gudeok Sports Complex in Busan, and Son Heung-min also showed up at the training ground and expressed his desire to play 스포츠토토.

An association official said, “The player himself has a strong will (to play). Yesterday, he did recovery training. Today’s training will be geared towards improving his physical condition.” Son Heung-min has already shown his commitment to the mask at the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar last year. Will he do it again for the Korean home fans?
South Korea national football team’s call-up list for the Peru-El Salvador double-header in June (23 players)

  • Goalkeepers: Kim Seung-kyu (Al Shabab), Cho Hyun-woo (Ulsan Hyundai), Song Bum-geun (Shonan Belmare)
  • Defenders: Park Ji-soo (Portimonense) Kim Joo-seong (FC Seoul) Kwon Kyung-won (Gamba Osaka) Ahn Hyun-beom (Jeju United) Kim Jin-soo (Jeonbuk Hyundai) Lee Ki-je (Suwon Samsung) Seol Young-woo (Ulsan Hyundai)
  • Midfielders: Son Jun-ho (Shandong Taishan), Hong Hyun-seok (KAA Gent), Won Doo-jae (Gimcheon Business), Hwang In-beom (Olympiacos), Lee Jae-sung (Mainz), Park Yong-woo (Ulsan Hyundai), Lee Kang-in (Mallorca), Son Heung-min (Tottenham), Hwang Hee-chan (Wolverhampton), Na Sang-ho (FC Seoul)
  • Forwards: Hwang Eui-jo (FC Seoul) Cho Kyu-sung (Jeonbuk Hyundai) Oh Hyun-gyu (Celtic)

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