Now that he’s settled in Europe, Oh Hyun-gyu (22-Celtic) is aiming to become Klinsmann’s number one striker.
Until last year’s World Cup in Qatar, Oh was a ‘reserve’ player: he trained without a number and watched matches from the stands.
Six months later, Oh’s status has changed: He joined Scottish giants Celtic in the winter transfer window and quickly adapted to the league. In 21 official games, he scored seven goals and helped Celtic win a treble (three trophies in one season). His decisiveness, physicality in the penalty box, and post play also improved, proving that he could thrive on the tough European stage. His mental ability to adapt to a completely different environment is also highly regarded.
Oh has now reached a level where he can compete for a starting spot in the national team. In the March call-up, he came on as a substitute in two consecutive games and led the attack from the front with his energetic movement.
The key is competition. The national team striker spot is held by two strong players, Hwang Eui-jo (FC Seoul) and Cho Kyu-sung (Jeonbuk Hyundai). Hwang is a former European player, while Cho was a breakout star at the World Cup. What’s more, both players have stepped up their game recently ahead of the A-match. After tasting goals for their clubs, they are excited to join the national team. Oh will need to win the battle against the two seniors to secure playing time.
The national team will play two matches against Peru in Busan on the 16th and El Salvador in Daejeon on the 20th. For Oh, it will be a two-game series to see where he stands.
At the press conference on the 13th, Oh said, “My brothers (Hwang) Eui-jo and (Cho) Kyu-sung are the ones who made me dream since I was young. I always have a lot of respect for them. I’m working with them with that mindset.” He added, “I think they have their own strengths. If we show our strengths well, the coach will give us opportunities according to our characteristics.” “I’m not sure about the playing time. But whether I get one minute or 90 minutes, I will do my best. I will do my best to give 100%.” “What I can do better than my brothers is to be stronger and more threatening in the box,” he added.토토사이트
Oh’s determination to play is clear. The experience of watching the games from the stands in Qatar has made him even more eager. “I followed the World Cup in Qatar, but I didn’t get to play. I wanted to play so badly, and I know the stadium. Only people who have been to the stadium know. I’m hungry because I didn’t get to play. I think I’m more eager. If I go to the Asian Cup, I want to create a dream moment,” he said.