We pick Mats Hummels, Son Heung-Min, Marco Reus as the three players to watch as South Korea and Germany lock horns in their final Group F game on Wednesday.
Germany will look to book their place in the Round of 16 when they face South Korea in their final group game. At the Kazan Arena on Wednesday, both of these sides will aim to play to their full potential, as they eye a place in the knockout rounds of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The world champions need a win to ensure their place in the next round, but can also hope to qualify with a draw, should Mexico beat Sweden. South Korea, on the other hand, need to secure a victory against Germany by more than a couple of goals whilst hoping that Mexico beat Sweden.
It promises to be a fascinating encounter as the world champions look to book their place in the Round of 16, against a South Korean side, who are more than capable of causing a huge upset in this crucial Group F fixture. We take a look at three players who could make the difference on Wednesday
Following the absence of Jerome Boateng, who is suspended after picking up two yellow cards against Sweden, the return of Mats Hummels will come as a huge sigh of relief for head coach Joachim Low.
The Bayern Munich defender missed the Sweden clash, but will be hoping he can make a difference against South Korea this evening. His ability to marshall the defence coupled with his ball-playing qualities is sure to hand Germany an advantage in their build-up play.
Additionally, Hummels will likely partner alongside his Bayern Munich teammate Niklas Sule, which could further solidify Germany’s defence. Both the defenders complemented each other well at Bayern last season and will be key as Die Mannschaft look to oust the Asian giants in order to seal a place in the knockout stages.
Highly regarded as the best Asian footballer at the moment by many fans and experts alike, South Korea will hope their main man Son Heung-Min can come with some magic as they look to produce a huge surprise this week.
Following a rather disappointing opening game against Sweden, the Tottenham man was a crucial attacking outlet for South Korea in their last game. Son attempted eight shots in South Korea’s loss to Mexico — three more than the Taegeuk Warriors managed in their opening match against Sweden (five shots).
Although the absence of key midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng will be a huge blow for South Korea, Son Heung-min’s sheer pace and dynamism is sure to hand the underdogs a huge boost in the offensive department. Therefore, stopping him would be imperative for Germany, if they are to snatch all three points on Wednesday.
Arguably the only German player who has performed on a consistent basis in this edition of the FIFA World Cup, the onus will once again be on Marco Reus to provide the attacking resources in the final third.
The Borussia Dortmund superstar had an impressive outing against Sweden, scoring the equalizer just before the hour mark while proving to be a real handful for the opposing defence throughout the course of the game. The 28-year-old is blessed with pace and dynamism in the final third, which allows him to infiltrate the opposing defence more often than not.
The South Korean defenders definitely need to be aware of his dangerous runs in behind the defence while he is also capable to scoring from long range, ultimately making him the complete offensive package for Germany in the final third.
Additionally, Ozil’s likely continued omission from the starting eleven will mean that Reus will be tasked with the responsibility of bringing the creative edge to the German side and to feed service to the likes of Thomas Muller and Timo Werner, both of whom are yet to find their groove in this World Cup campaign.