South Korea vs Mexico
World Cup 2018 Group F
Date: Saturday, 23 June 2018
Kick-off at 16:00 UK/ 17:00 CET
Venue: Rostov Arena.
Mexico head into the FIFA World Cup match against South Korea are heavy favourites after their 1-0 win against Germany in the group opener.
The El Tri at their 7th consecutive World Cup appearance can reach the round of 16 of the competition for as many times in a row with a win against South Korea on Friday.
While the Asians suffered a defeat to Sweden 1-0 and are playing to stay in the competition as anything less than a win at the Rostov Arena will confirm their exit from the group stage with one match to spare.
South Korea vs Mexico Match Preview
The first round of World Cup 2018 group phase is full of surprises and the one that least expected is a Mexico win against reigning champions Germany.
Hirving Lozano scored the solitary goal of the game midway through the first half, but in all honesty, this could have been an embarrassing night for the European giants if not for an array of missed chances from Miguel Layun and Chicharito Hernandez.
The win put the Mexicans in a firm position to qualify for the first knockout stage for the 7th consecutive time.
South Korea was largely disappointing in their first outing at the tournament against Sweden.
The match must be known for a number of missed chances at either ends. The lone goal for the Swedes came through a penalty, a decision correctly given with the VAR assistance.
Korea, the only Asian side to have made it into every FIFA World Cup since 1986, are at the risk of bowing out from the group stage for the 7th time in 9 attempts.
South Korea vs Mexico Team News and Predicted Starting Line-up
South Korea Team News
- Wholesale changes are hardly expected to the South Korean eleven that started against Sweden unless to cope with fitness issues.
- The full-back Park Joo-ho is a major doubt after picking up a knock in the first half of the defeat against Sweden.
- Kim Min-woo, the man who replaced Park back then could be the one who starts against Mexico.
Korea Predicted Starting Line-up (4-3-3)
Hyun-Woo Cho – Kim Min-woo, Kim Young-gwon, Jang Hyun-Soo, Lee Yong – Koo Ja-cheol, Sung-Yong Ki, Lee Jae-Sung – Heung-min Son, Hwang Hee-chan, Kim Shin-Wook.
Mexico Team News
- Juan Carlos Osario will resist to make any changes to the eleven that performed admirably against the mighty Germans.
- This means Carlos Salcedo keeps his place at the right back alongside Ayala, Moreno and Gallardo in the back four.
- Javier Hernandez is one short of 50 international goals, will get another chance to complete the feat.
Mexico Predicted Starting Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Ochoa – Gallardo, Moreno, Ayala, Salcedo – Guardado, Herrera – Layun, Vela, Lozano – Hernandez.
South Korea vs Mexico Head-to-head
The teams share 2 wins and 1 draw from their 5 overall meetings spread across various tournaments.
Their lone meeting in a World Cup came back in the 1986 edition hosted at Mexico. The El Tri run riot with a 3-1 win on that occasion.
Their most recent meeting was in a friendly in 2014 and Mexico bagged a comfortable 4-0 win.
South Korea vs Mexico Prediction
It was a brilliant all-round performance that helped Mexico trump Germany to three points in their opening group game. While, the number of scoring chances created was impressive, the finishing must improve and I expect to see this on Friday.
Meantime, Korea are too defensive and one-dimensional in their approach to attack. They saw plenty of the ball in the closing stages of the match against Sweden, but hardly put one inside the penalty box.
It is clear that Mexico are a bigger attacking threat than Sweden and they will score at some point. Korea are too numb going forward, nor do they have the security of a secure defense.
Therefore, I can see the Mexicans grab another win and put pressure on Germany and Sweden who will go head-to-head later that day.
South Korea vs Mexico Betting Tips
- Mexico to win – 4/6 (1.67) @ William Hill
- Over 1.5 FT goals – 4/9 (1.44) @ William Hill
- Javier Hernandez to score anytime – 6/4 (2.50) @ William Hill