Son Heung-min more expensive than 21 teams in Asian Cup

By Hieu Luong   January 6, 2024 | 03:00 am PT
South Korean football superstar Son Heung-min is said to be worth $54.5 million, higher than the value of 21 national teams at the 2024 Asian Cup.
Son Heung-min (R) and his teammate Kim Min-jae are among the most valuable Asian players. Photo by Korean Football Association

Son Heung-min (R) and his teammate Kim Min-jae are among the most valuable Asian players. Photo by Korean Football Association

According to football site Transfermarkt, Son's value is only lower than Japan ($345.5 million), South Korea ($210.4 million) and Iran ($56.2). Son has the same value as Japanese winger Kaoru Mitoma, but lower than Japan’s Takefusa Kubo and his teammate Kim Min-jae. These are the four Asian players with the highest value at the moment.

Son was the most valuable Asian footballer in 2020 when he was valued at $98.5 million.

At the 2024 Asian Cup, the striker, born in 1992, and his South Korean teammates aim for the nation’s first continental title in 64 years. This season, Son became the captain of Tottenham Hotspurs. He is in high form, having scored 12 goals with 5 assists in 21 matches in all competitions.

Of the 20 most expensive players at the tournament, Japan accounts for 13 while South Korea is home to four. The three remaining players are strikers Mehdi Taremi and Sardar Azmoun of Iran, and defender Harry Souttar of Australia.

On Thursday, the Asian Football Confederation announced its 26-player squad list for each team participating in the 2024 Asian Cup. However, the list can still change up to six hours before the opening match.

The Vietnam national football team are valued at $6.6 million, higher only than Hong Kong ($6.5 million).

The value of Vietnam national team is 52 times less than Japan and is the lowest in group D, where Iraq and Indonesia are valued at $$12.7 million and 9.9 million, ranking 11th and 14th in the tournament.

The value of Vietnam squad has declined due to the absence of many key players due to injuries, including goalkeeper Dang Van Lam, defenders Que Ngoc Hai, Thanh Chung, Doan Van Hau, midfielder Phan Van Duc and striker Nguyen Tien Linh.

Vietnamese-Czech goalkeeper Filip Nguyen’s value of $657,000 is the highest on the Vietnamese squad, about 10% of the team's total value.

Two other Southeast Asian countries, Thailand and Malaysia, ranked 15th with $9.7 million and 20th with $7.3 million, respectively. Thailand would have been ranked higher if they had star midfielder Chanathip Songkrasin ($1.09 million), who won’t be going to Qatar due to injury.

The 2024 Asian Cup will be held from Jan. 12 to Feb. 10 at nine stadiums in Qatar. Twenty-four teams are divided into six groups, with the top two teams of each group and four third-placed teams with the best results slated to enter the round of 16. The defending champion of the tournament is Qatar, while Japan have won the most titles at the event with four.

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