'Angry' Klinsmann vows not to quit after S. Korea's Asian Cup exit

By AFP   February 6, 2024 | 07:00 pm PT
'Angry' Klinsmann vows not to quit after S. Korea's Asian Cup exit
South Korea's coach Jurgen Klinsmann looks out from the bench during the Asian Cup's round of 16 match against Saudi Arabia and South Korea, at the Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, Qatar, on Jan. 30, 2024. Photo by AP/Thanassis Stavrakis
Jurgen Klinsmann vowed to carry on as South Korea coach despite failing to fulfill his stated objective of reaching the Asian Cup final following a 2-0 defeat to Jordan on Tuesday.

The German legend has not won over South Korean fans and media since taking over a year ago and is likely to face demands to quit after his team went out in the semi-finals.

Despite boasting Asia's best player in Son Heung-min, South Korea's wait for a first Asian Cup since 1960 goes on after they were well beaten by Jordan in Qatar.

Asked by AFP if he will quit, Klinsmann said: "I am not planning to do anything.

"I plan to analyze this tournament and talk to the (South Korean) federation about what was good and not so good.

"There was a lot of good stuff we saw. The team is growing and still needs to develop towards the next World Cup.

"There is a lot of work ahead of us.

"Apart from that, I am not thinking of anything."

Klinsmann, a World Cup winner as a player but who has not reached the same heights as a coach, has been criticized in South Korea for smiling even when his team lost.

He was asked in the post-match press conference about smiling when he greeted Jordan's coach Hussein Ammouta at the end of the semi-final defeat in Doha.

"I am disappointed, I am angry," the 59-year-old said.

"We did not exist in the first 20-30 minutes (of the game)."

Klinsmann said Jordan, who were the better side in the first half and scored twice in the second, deserved to win despite being the underdogs.

"We had the big goal to get to the final," he said.

"(But) they were more aggressive, they won almost all the one-on-one battles in the first half-hour."

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