“The Chinese team is far behind in every statistical category, and Chinese soccer still has a long way to go to catch up with Asia’s powerhouses.”
That’s the opening line of a 2-day article in the Chinese media outlet Xinhua about China’s 0-2 loss to South Korea in the men’s soccer quarterfinals of the Hangzhou 2022 Asian Games.
Chinese media outlets are quick to criticize the Chinese national team for being outclassed and outplayed by South Korea. In fact, there is even a sigh of relief that the team avoided conceding too many goals.
“China failed to pose much of a threat to their opponents, with Dai Weijun’s header finding the back of the net in first-half stoppage time,” reported Ningbo, “and were outplayed in every aspect of the game, including 41% to 59% ball possession, 2 to 14 shots, and 89 to 126 shots on goal.” On the field, the disparity was even more evident.
Some may find significance in the fact that the team lost to South Korea without two of their starters due to sending off or accumulating cautions, but still managed to reach the quarterfinals for the first time in 17 years. There are also calls for the team to prepare for the Asian qualifiers for the 2026 World Cup in November. China is in Group C of the qualifiers alongside South Korea.
“Although they lost, China’s performance in the game was not bad,” Huang Jianliang, a well-known soccer commentator, wrote on social media shortly after China’s defeat, adding that “the players made bold moves and showed a good performance.” However, “the lack of fundamentals is China’s fatal weakness,” he said, adding that “not being able to hold the ball and losing it when it is taken away is not something that can be solved once and for all.”스포츠토토
“Playing soccer is not only about technique, but also about the ability to read the game and make decisions, which needs to be improved through training and experience,” he said. Huang Zhenliang praised South Korea, saying, “They showed very high tactical awareness and coordination in this match.”
“They played very confidently, their skills were very comprehensive, and they always outplayed the Chinese team in different ways, whether they were defending or attacking,” Huang praised. “These are the kind of things that China should emulate and improve upon in their daily training.”
The comments on the article announcing China’s defeat were largely pessimistic. “If it wasn’t for the referee in the last game against Qatar, we would have been eliminated,” “Chinese soccer has been developing for more than half a century, why is the level getting worse and worse,” and “When losing becomes a habit, it’s not a big deal.”