Despite suffering with a groin issue, the attacker played the entire 90 minutes in Tuesday’s 6-0 victory over Vietnam.
Heung-min Son, the captain of Tottenham, acknowledged his desire to represent South Korea despite his chronic injury issues.
Despite clearly hobbling at halftime of Tuesday’s 6-0 victory against Vietnam, the striker, who had been rested for last week’s 4-0 victory over Tunisia, played the entire 90 minutes.
After scoring in the second half, Son was seen grinning in agony and squatting on his haunches with more than 10 minutes left to go in the easy victory.
The 31-year-old acknowledged afterward that a groin issue had made it difficult for him to exercise in advance of the game, but he was still keen to participate.
After South Korea’s victory, Son responded to a question regarding his injury by saying: “Injuries are an inherent part of living as a player. I was unsure whether to participate in the game today, but I couldn’t accept traveling to Korea and not competing in front of the crowd.
“I discussed playing in the game with the coach before we started the game. Although I couldn’t engage as much in training, I appreciate the coach’s support for my decision.
“The original plan was to play 90 minutes,” Klinsmann stated about his choice to keep Son on the field. When evaluated at the 60-minute mark, there was no issue and the muscle injury had not returned.