Korean stars named in Cup of Nations squad
Seoul: Ji So-yun, Cho So-hyun and Lee Min-a will all make the trip to the Australian-based Cup of Nations, after Korea Republic head coach Yoon Duk-yeo named the star trio in his 26-strong squad for the tournament, which begins next Thursday.
With just over three months until this year's FIFA Women's World Cup, the competition will see Korea Republic meet Argentina, host nation Australia and New Zealand, all of whom have qualified for the global Finals in France.
England-based Ji and Cho, and Japan-based Lee, are the headline acts in a squad packed with international experience.
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Ji is the team's all-time leading scorer with 49 international goals, and is in the midst of a superb season for Chelsea in the English Women's Super League, a competition where she has recently been joined by national team captain Cho So-hyun, who signed with West Ham United in January.
Cho, alongside Lee, was one of the standouts at the AFC Women's Asian Cup Jordan 2018, with the pair contributing three goals apiece as the Taeguk Ladies sealed their spot at France 2019 with a fifth-place finish.
Elsewhere, 28-year-old Gyeongju defender Park Se-ra retains her place in the squad after making her debut in a 3-0 win against Romania last month, while 2010 FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup hero Yeo Min-ji has been rewarded for her goal-scoring return to the national team in the same match.
Moon Mi-ra (pictured above, left), who will celebrate her 27th birthday on the tournament's opening day, has also been selected following her haul of six goals in as many matches at last August's Asian Games in Indonesia.
Korea Republic will face host nation France, Norway and Nigeria in a demanding Group A at the FIFA Women's World Cup, where they will aim to repeat their achievement of 2015 by advancing to the knockout stage.
Their Cup of Nations campaign kicks off against Argentina in Sydney on February 28, with an all-Asian clash against Australia to be held in Brisbane three days later, before they meet New Zealand in their final fixture on March 6.
Korea Republic squad - Cup of Nations
Goalkeepers: KANG Ga-ae, KIM Jeong-mi. JEONG Bo-ram. Defenders: KIM Hye-ri, SIN Dam-yeng, LIM Seon-joo, JANG Sel-gi, JEONG Young-a, PARK Se-ra, LEE Eun-mi, HA Eun-hye, HONG Hye-ji. Midfielders: KANG Yu-mi, MOON Mi-ra, LEE Min-a, LEE So-dam, LEE Young-ju, JANG Chang, JEON Ga-eul, CHO So-hyun, HAN Chae-rin. Forwards: SON Hwa-yeon, YEO Min-ji, LEE Geum-min, JUNG Seol-bin, JI So-yun.
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