It’s not just a physical resemblance. Kim Eun Joong Ho midfielder Kang Sang-yoon (19, North Korea) helped South Korea reach the semifinals of the U-20 World Cup by “summoning” his teammate, technical director Park Ji-sung (41).

Kang played a vital role for Korea at the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Argentina, appearing in all six matches from the group stage to the semifinals.

He played full-time in all but five of those games, including the third round match against The Gambia, after the team qualified for the round of 16.

So far, he has played 524 minutes, the second most in the squad after striker Lee Young-joon (Gimcheon) with 570 minutes and defender Kim Ji-soo (Seongnam) with 524 minutes.

Most runs. The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) lists Kang as having run 66.66 kilometers, the most in South Korea.

He also had the most sprints (270). With his frequent sprints, he averaged nearly 11 kilometers per game without getting injured. The heat map shows how much ground he covered, from defensive to offensive areas. It’s a performance reminiscent of Park Ji-Sung of “Two Hearts” fame.

Kang Sang-yoon, who is more of an attacking midfielder, played the role of an ‘unsung hero’ in the tournament as a defensive midfielder due to Coach Kim Eun-jung’s instructions to ‘speak up’.

With Kang Sang-yoon covering a lot of ground in the midfield, captain Lee Seung-won (Gangwon) was able to be more aggressive and rack up two goals, four assists, and a lot of offensive points.

In addition to his goals and assists, Lee also holds records for most passes (221) and most crosses (22) on the team.

In a tournament that featured “dancing dribbler” Bae Joon-ho (Daejeon), “goal-scoring defender” Choi Seok-hyun (Dankook University), Premier League offeree Kim Ji Young-joon, Lee Seung-won’s goalkeeper Kim Jun-hong (Gimcheon), and Kang Sang-yoon, defenders Choi Ye-hoon (Busan) and Park Chang-woo (Jeonbuk), and midfielder Park Hyun-bin (Incheon) provided a solid backbone.

After finishing second in the group stage, Kim Eun-jung-ho advanced to the semifinals for the second straight tournament, beating Ecuador and Nigeria in the round of 16 and quarterfinals, respectively.스포츠토토

After conceding an early goal in the semifinal against Italy in La Plata on Sept. 9, Lee Seung-won’s penalty equalizer brought the game back to 1-1, but the South Koreans fell short in the final after conceding a free-kick goal by Thurro in the dying minutes.

Kang will look to put in a quiet but solid performance in the third-place match against Israel at 2:30 a.m. on Dec. 12 to help secure third place.

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