‘Virtually a double-header’ Klinsmann’s top 11, Asian Cup ‘frontline’ owners to be decided in November

National team head coach Jürgen Klinsmann’s November A-match roster isn’t much different from previous years. The best 11 is more or less set, but the front line is still up in the air.

On November 6, Klinsmann revealed the 23 Taegeuk Warriors who will participate in the November A match. The difference from last month is that Song Bum-geun (Shonan Belmare) came in for “No. 3” goalkeeper Kim Jun-hong (Gimcheon Commerce), and center back Kim Joo-sung (FC Seoul) was dropped.

This shows that Klinsmann, who emphasized continuity earlier, has completed his work on the national team. Looking back at last month’s two matches (Tunisia-Vietnam), Klinsmann’s best 11 has also taken shape.

Klinsmann has entrusted Son Heung-min (Tottenham), Lee Kang-in (Paris Saint-Germain), and Hwang Hee-chan (Wolverhampton) in attack, while the midfield is a combination of Hwang In-beom (FK Tsubena Zvezda), Park Yong-woo (Al Ain), and Lee Jae-sung (Mainz). The only potential change is the defense, which remained the same in the last two games. Kim Min-jae (Bayern Munich) and Jung Seung-hyun (Ulsan Hyundai) held the center, while Lee Ki-je (Suwon Samsung) and Seol Young-woo (Ulsan) covered the left and right sides, respectively.

With the lineup unlikely to change much barring an upset, the battleground is the front line.

Since taking over the reins of the national team in March, Klinsmann has stuck with Cho Kyu-sung (Mittwillan), Hwang Eui-jo (Norwich City), and Oh Hyun-gyu (Celtic). The forward lineup hasn’t changed once, but given the rotation, it’s clear that ‘number one’ is a concern.

In October, Cho Kyu-sung was one step ahead. A regular for the club since his move to Mittwilan last summer, Cho has been the most in-form of the three. He scored the winning goal with a header in a September exhibition match against Saudi Arabia to give Klinsmann’s side their first win, and started both of their back-to-back games last month.

However, Cho Kyu-kyu is not a solid starter either. He played the full 60 minutes against Tunisia and Vietnam before being replaced by Hwang Eui-jo. Oh Hyun-gyu, who has seen his playing time dwindle this season, didn’t even make it onto the pitch last month when he was wearing the Korean flag, but his recent goal for Masu-girl could push him into contention for the national team. 캡틴토토

Klinsmann’s men will play Singapore (Sept. 16) and China (Sept. 21) in the second round of Asian qualifiers for the FIFA Confederations Cup North America 2026. The two matches will reveal the No. 1 striker for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup next January.