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Could this be Ji So-Yun’s last World Cup?

Korea Republic prepares for the World Cup with Head Coach Colin Bell, hoping to make an improvement from their performance back in 2019.

The Asia Cup Finalists head into this tournament off the back off a 2-1 win against Haiti with a penalty scored from Ji So-Yun and an 81st minute wonder Goal from Jang Sel-Gi.

Bell’s squad consists of over half the players being 30 years or over. This includes players like Ji, with which many are speculating this being her last world cup for Korea.

Ji first debuted for her national side back in 2006 at the age of just 15, making her the youngest ever player for the Korea Republic. From then on, she has continued to break many records including becoming the first Korean to play in the Women’s Super League when she signed for Chelsea back in 2014 and also becoming the all-time top goal scorer for Korea. She is one of the top players of the women’s game with many calling her “Ji Messi”. With having debuted at such a young age, Ji hopes that she can give “hopes and dreams to younger players that they too can reach the world cup”.

16-year-old Casey Phair will make her World Cup debut this year with Korea. With an American father and Korean mother, Phair becomes the first mix raced player for either Korea women’s or men’s team. Head Coach Bell has kept Phair away from publicity in recent weeks in order to “give her that space where she can develop and show her performance”. The youngster heads into this tournament after impressing Bell by scoring a hat-trick in a

12-0 win over Hong Kong for Korea’s U17 2024 Asia Cup Qualifiers.

The team are hoping to improve from their performance from the last world cup and get out of the group stage where they will be playing Columbia, Germany and Morocco. With experienced players like Ji So-Yun and young players like Casey Phair, Korea may have a chance to really succeed in this Tournament.

Korea’s first match will be against Columbia on Tuesday 25th July.

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