FIFA World Cup Kin Min Jae big loss for Korea, Ghana need Kudus, Williams to shine in Group H

[Doha: The ball goes pass Morocco's Romain Saiss (6) and his teammate Achraf Hakimi as they attempt to head the ball from an offside position during a World Cup group F soccer match against Belgium at the Al Thumama Stadium in Doha, Qatar, Sunday, Nov. 27, 2022. /PTI] Doha (Qatar), Nov 27 : South Korea coach Paulo Bento has admitted he is frustrated at the loss of experienced defender Kim Min-Jae through injury during his side's 0-0 draw against Uruguay. Kim won't be available for their vital game in FIFA World Cup against Ghana on Monday night. Bento admitted that Kim was an important loss as he brings a lot of experience to his side. "He has played every game in the Champions League for Napoli," he said. The injury to the defender means that South Korea found it more difficult to play the ball out of defense against Uruguay and as such, they dropped deeper against the South Americans. Bento has come in for criticism for that tactic back in South Korea, but in fairness, as well as losing Kim Min-Jae, Bento's plans were also hampered by Heung Min-Son's lack of match fitness. The 30-year-old played in a face mask after breaking a bone in his eye socket three weeks ago and although he has been passed fit to play, he clearly lacked match fitness against Uruguay. Ghana need Ajax midfielder Mohammed Kudus to provide the spark as they aim to bounce back from their opening-day defeat to Portugal and avoid an early exit from Qatar. Kudus was Ghana's best player in their opening game, setting up Andrew Ayew for their opening goal and it was surprising to see both withdrawn just after they had combined to temporarily level the scores. Ghana coach Otto Addo had to answer questions about that decision and may push Kudus into a more advanced role against South Korea, reports Xinhua. Ghana also need to get more of the ball to striker Inaki Williams, who came close to a dramatic last-gasp equalizer on Thursday. One of the fastest players at the World Cup, Williams made plenty of the same runs that he makes week after week for his teammates at Athletic Club Bilbao, but still lacks the understanding with the Ghana players for them to pick him out. If he finds space, Williams is devastating, but it's down to Kudus and Ayew to make the passes. /IANS


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