Mallorca coach Javier Aguirre is nervous. They are expressing their dissatisfaction with the match schedule considering Korean time and the selection of Lee Kang-in for the national team.
On the afternoon of the 19th (Korean time), Mallorca, which had round 26 of the 2022-2023 Spanish La Liga, lost 0-1 to Real Betis at Estadio Benito Villamarin in Seville, Spain. Mallorca remained in 11th place with 32 points (9 wins, 5 draws and 11 losses).
Before the match, coach Aguirre was asked about the A-match break, saying, “We resume matches on Friday, but there are people who return on Thursday. “I’ll watch their pick-up. But the worst is the match against South Korea and Uruguay. Two people play there, including Lee Kang-in and Gio Gonzalez,” he complained.
Lee Kang-in was included in the call-up list for the Korean national soccer team for the upcoming FIFA A match in March. He met for the first time with coach Jürgen Klinsmann, who took the lead in Korea following coach Paulo Bento. Along with Lee Kang-in, Mallorca’s right-back Gonzalez was also named to the Uruguay national team. 안전놀이터
The problem is that the match between the two teams is scheduled for the 28th. According to coach Aguirre, the two players are expected to return to Mallorca on the 30th (local time) after playing in Korea. Mallorca are scheduled to play Osasuna at home on Friday night, the 31st. In the case of Lee Kang-in, it is a situation where he has to take a day off and put himself into the game. It could be fatal for the team if Lee Kang-in, a key player in the team, could not play with full stamina.
To make matters worse, Mallorca lost the game that day. In the 3rd minute of the second half, Borja Iglesias scored the winning goal and failed to break the away losing streak. Due to the defeat on this day, he could not keep the 10th place and fell to 11th place. Mallorca is in the mid-table with good flow this season, but the difference in points from the relegation zone is not large. They are only 6 points behind Valencia in 18th place. Even if they slip just two more games, they have to worry about remaining.
In this situation, coach Aguirre is getting more and more nervous. Emotions were evident in his remarks. After the game, he said, “I’m really grateful for the league that made it possible to play 9 games in this hot heat,” and “I hope Korean people don’t turn off the TV and watch Lee Kang-in’s game. We are sacrificed for the Asian market.”
Mallorca had a lot of daytime games this season. Nine games this season were played at 2:00 p.m. This is because La Liga considered Korean time as Lee Kang-in’s presence.
However, Mallorca is also targeting the Asian market through Lee Kang-in. In the fan store, Lee Kang-in’s uniform is the most popular, and Koreans are having fun as more and more Koreans visit the home stadium. This is why Director Aguirre’s complaint is not 100% understandable.