With Lee Kang-In injured and substituted in the first friendly, a lot of attention will be focused on his participation in the Asia Tour.
PSG announced the 29-man squad for the 2023 Asia Tour on its official website on Wednesday (July 22). As part of their summer pre-season, PSG have chosen Asia as the destination for their 2023 international tour.
The actual PSG players arrived in Osaka, Japan, today on a chartered flight provided by main sponsor Qatar Airways. PSG will first play two matches in Osaka against Al-Nasr (Saudi Arabia) and Cerezo Osaka (Japan) on August 25 at 7pm and August 28 at 7pm, respectively, before facing Inter Milan (Italy) in Tokyo on August 1 at 7pm.
After completing the Japanese schedule, the team will head to Lee’s homeland of South Korea to face Jeonbuk Hyundai on Aug. 3 at the Busan Asiad Stadium to conclude their East Asian tour.
The list excludes Mbappe, who has recently been at odds with the club over a contract extension, and includes Lee Kang-in, who was substituted due to injury in the last friendly against Le Havre. Lee felt pain in his thigh after sprinting in the 42nd minute of the first half, where he had been performing well, and was substituted a minute later after coming over to Luis Enrique’s side and complaining of pain.
If the injury was serious, he could have been removed from the Asia Tour roster, but it is not expected to be something that would prevent him from traveling with the team. However, the extent of Lee’s injury has not been disclosed, so we are still unsure if he will be able to play.
In the meantime, a leading French journalist has commented on Lee’s current situation.
Abdelrahim Bulma, a journalist who is well versed in PSG news and contributes to French media outlets such as Sport and RTL Sport, was asked about Lee’s current status on his social media accounts on the 22nd.
“He will undergo a series of tests during the tour. In order to continue,” he said, noting that in order for Lee to play on the tour, he would have to undergo a series of tests during that time to confirm his condition.
There was no specific mention of the duration or severity of the injury, but it doesn’t appear to be something that will keep him out for an extended period of time.
However, PSG will likely not want to overuse their newest summer signing in a preseason game and jeopardize his selection for next season, so there’s a chance he could be limited to the sidelines if his condition doesn’t improve significantly.
Meanwhile, French media and PSG fans reacted to Lee’s injury with mixed feelings, worried about the extent of his injury.
French media outlet Score said, “Kang-in was injured just before halftime. The PSG coaching staff preferred not to take any risks with him. No information on the extent of the injury has been released yet. If he is out for a few weeks, it could be a big blow for PSG, whose season is about to start,” he said, emphasizing that his departure is a big loss.
“Last season, PSG saw their squad hit by injuries throughout the season and will be desperate to avoid suffering the same fate,” the outlet added, noting that the injury brings back memories of PSG’s disappointing performance last season. 메이저놀이터
Indeed, PSG struggled to field a starting XI last season as key players such as Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Ashraf Hakimi, Nuno Mendes, and Marco Verratti were injured in rotation throughout the season.
PSG fans were concerned, noting Lee’s injury history. One PSG fan account, ‘PSG Community’, expressed concern that Lee was suffering from the ‘PSG injury curse’, explaining, “If you look at Lee’s injury history, he has only missed 8 games due to injury so far,” and “notably, he hasn’t missed a single game since January 2020.”
According to public records, Lee missed a total of eight matches due to injury in August and November 2019, and then missed two matches in December 2020 due to contracting the COVID-19 virus. Since then, he has not missed any official matches due to injury.
Recently, when Lee, who hadn’t been injured in more than three years, complained of thigh pain upon arriving at PSG, fans wished him a speedy recovery, saying, “We hope he doesn’t get the PSG curse.”
While soccer fans nervous about Lee’s injury in the first game of preseason have been reassured by the Asian tour roster and reports from leading journalists, it will be interesting to see if Lee can recover quickly enough to play in a PSG uniform in South Korea.