It’s the international break which means another two weeks of boredom while we all light candles in prayer circles hoping nobody else on Tottenham Hotspur comes back injured. Sounds great, huh? Because while it’s bad enough James Maddison and Micky van de Ven are out until January, the only thing worse would be if something happened to, say, Son Heung-Min while he’s playing a World Cup qualifier for Korea against Singapore.
Well, I have good news and scary news.
First, the good news: Sonny scored a banger today, as Korea pounded a mostly hapless Singapore at home. Look at this beauty!
That’s lovely. Top bins, Sonny. Naturally, Jurgen Klinsmann yanked him right afterwards to make sure he stays healthy with the game comfortably in hand, right?
Thankfully, he was okay because he was able to return to the field [!] to see out the rest of the match [!!!] in what turned out to be a 5-0 drubbing.
Afterwards, Son basically scolded the media in the post-match interview, saying he wanted to stay on the pitch because he wants to give everything for Korea in order to make it back to the World Cup.
“We are making a team for the FIFA World Cup, I can’t give up a game just because I feel pai. If I can’t run anymore, then I can’t do anything about it when I can run, I have to give 100% for the team.
“I’m fine now, I don’t like to lie down [on the pitch] in winter. At that moment [I went down] I couldn’t feel anything in my foot. It’s not just me, all players have small injuries but still play for the team.”
Honestly, I kinda don’t even blame Sonny for this. He’s an insane person when it comes to his drive and motivation on the football pitch, and we’ve known this for years. Therefore it’s up to the manager — Jurgen Klinsmann — to be the adult in the room and do what’s best for the player, and by extension, his club team. There’s no reason to keep Sonny on the pitch up 3-0 against an inferior AFC opponent at home in the 63rd minute. Instead, he was kept on for the full 90, picked up a knock that may or may not be significant down the road, and for very little actual benefit.
Now, maybe Sonny’s fine. Just an ankle stinger, or a mild knock and he’ll be right as rain tomorrow — that’d be great! But that’s kind of beside the point here. There’s a pretty massive fanbase back in England (and a pretty swell Australian manager) that’s depending just as much on him being healthy and fit as Korea is. Probably more so. You would think that Jurgen Klinsmann, of all people, would understand this and would take steps to save Sonny from himself. I guess not.
I am mad about this.