A day after being left out of Jürgen Klinsmann’s squad, Ulsan Hyundai’s K League One striker In-Joo Ji-kyu scored a goal to become the country’s top scorer. With better positioning and decision-making than in previous seasons, it will be interesting to see if he can earn a call-up to the next national team.
In the K League 1 17th round away match against Suwon FC on 6 June, In-jong-kyu came on as a second-half substitute and scored the winning goal to make it 2-1, helping the team to a 3-1 victory.
The goal took his tally to nine, making him the league’s top scorer. He is already on pace to reach double figures before the league has even turned a corner. His pace has also picked up from last season, when he scored 17 goals.안전놀이터
Despite all of this, one of the things that has kept him from boarding the Klinsmann is his slow feet. A common thread in modern football is strong pressure from the front line and quick counter-attacks from deep in the opposition’s half. “If a striker has slow feet, it is difficult to harass the opponent’s build-up from a high position,” said Han Jun-hee, a commentator for Coupang Play.
“His positioning and decision-making are still excellent, but his lack of agility and explosiveness are weaknesses,” said Kim Dae-gil, a commentator for The Korea Times. He believes he lacks the ability to dribble alone and shake the opposition defence from outside the box. In fact, the forward resources aboard the Klinsmann this time around are considered to have a better dribbling ability than Lee In-gyu, even if their goalscoring ability is somewhat lower.
A narrow radius of action is also considered a weakness. Without quality passes from the flanks or midfield, the chances of being isolated up front are high. Ulsan’s full-back Seol Young-woo and second-choice striker Bako create plenty of scoring opportunities for Lee In-gyu. If he goes to a lower-ranked team like Ulsan that doesn’t have good supportive shooting, his strengths could be buried.
Decision-making is another area where In-joo can expect to make the Klinsmann in the future. His 34 shots on goal ranked sixth, but his 15 shots on target ranked third overall. His average goal per game is 0.56, which ranks second overall. “His goal-scoring ability is definitely higher than the other frontline players on board the Klinsmann,” said commentator Kim Dae-gil, “and if they’re aiming for the Asian Cup right away, it’s not a bad option to test him first.”