Following Fabio Cannavaro, Antonio Di Natale, Giorgio Chiellini, and Fabio Capello, José Mourinho (60), AS Roma coach, joined.
In Europe, the home of soccer, favorable reviews for ‘Korean center back’ Kim Min-jae (27, Naples) are continuing. It shines even more as an achievement at the center of defensive tactics where the concept of catenaccio (barred defense) was established.
Napoli won 2-1 in the 20th round of the 스포츠토토 2022-23 season Italian Serie A Roma held at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium in Naples, Italy on the 30th (Korean time).
Napoli’s unique ‘salty defense’ led by center backs Kim Min-jae and Amir Rahmani led the team’s victory. He boasted a dazzling performance by tying Roman three-top, who is considered the top player in the league in terms of name value and skill, with zero shots on target.
Paulo Dybala, who is tied for ninth in scoring with seven goals this season, played full-time as a three-top right flanker that day, but only managed one shot. Central striker Tammy Abraham, tied for 5th in this category with 16 shots on target, lost face by not being able to shoot at all.
Attacking midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini, who was born in Roma youth and is regarded as the successor to Francesco Totti, also played on the left wing, but only one shot without an effective shot. It was perfect content except for the 12th minute header clearing that almost led to an own goal.
The enemy commander also agreed. Mourinho, one of the 10 best coaches in football history selected by UEFA along with Arrigo Sacchi, Alex Ferguson, and the late Linus Michels, praised Kim Min-jae instead of pointing out the players of his team. “Kim Min-jae and Rahmani are very strong defenders,” he said, “among them, Kim Min-jae is fantastic.”
According to WhoScored.com, a soccer statistics site, in the match against Rome, Kim Min-jae recorded 9 kicks and 2 shooting jerseys, the most among the two teams. From the penalty box to the half line, the aggressiveness of strongly pressing the Roma attacking team was revealed in the figures. Opponent counterattacks aiming for the back space were also cleared one after another using quick feet, which excited the home fans.
This season, Napoli leads the league in terms of team goals (48 goals) and conceded goals (15 goals). If Victor Osimen, who scored 14 goals, is the pillar of attack, Kim Min-jae is playing a big role as an equalizer in the back.
There is no end to the favorable reviews of celebrities with thick bones in the European football world. In an interview with ‘Sky Sports Italia’ in October of last year, Capello, a former great captain who achieved remarkable results at AC Milan, Roma, and Juventus, said, “Kim Min-jae is a better defender than Kalidou Koulibaly.” Initially, he was recruited as an alternative to Koulibaly, who left for Chelsea, but it is said to be a ‘bright idea’ that surpasses the original.
Kim Min-jae played full-time in the UEFA Champions League group stage match against Rangers (Scotland) on October 27 last year, contributing to the team’s 3-0 victory. He showed an impeccable defensive performance with 4 interceptions, 5 clearances and 5 ball recoveries.
This match left a strong impression on many senior soccer players. Not only Capello, but also Italian centre-back Chiellini mentioned Kim Min-jae. He, who has been playing in the American professional football Major League Soccer (MLS) since this season, praised him, saying, “I was impressed when I saw Kim Min-jae, the substitute for Koulibaly.”
Other than that, there are too many of them to count on one hand. Cannavaro, Di Natale, UEFA Vice President Zbigniep Boniek, Naples legend Giuseppe Brusculotti, and Mesut Ozil, who matched their hands and feet during Fenerbahce, highly praised Kim Min-jae’s skills. In Serie A, which is evaluated as the center of defense in Europe, where there are many directors who produce competent center backs every year and lead defensive tactics trends, he is recognized for leading the team to first place by demonstrating his peak skills from the first year.