Aleksandar Jankovic (51, Serbia), the head coach of China’s national team, is confident despite the difficulty of facing South Korea at home.
Jankovic’s side have been drawn in Group C alongside Jürgen Klinsmann’s South Korea, Thailand and Singapore in the second round of Asian qualifying for the 2026 FIFA World Cup North America.
China will first face Thailand on Sept. 16 (local time) before taking on South Korea on Sept. 21 at 9 p.m. at the Shenzhen Universiade Sports Center. Compared to Thailand and Singapore, South Korea is the toughest opponent for China. 보스토토
Jankovic gave an interview to China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency on Nov. 13 to share his thoughts on the team’s approach to the World Cup’s second Asian qualifier. Considering South Korea’s absolute power, Xinhua believes that the match against Thailand will be the key to progressing through the group stage and that it will be difficult to beat them.
“Korea is not only the best team in Asia, but also the best team in the world,” Jankovic said, adding, “Their individual abilities, team stability, and confidence in the game are all top-notch. This is a big challenge for us,” he said, acknowledging the difference in power between Korea and China.
“But we play football to win,” Jankovic said. This is our first home game in World Cup qualifying. It’s very important for us,” he said, adding, “We have to show extraordinary mental strength and compete with our opponents with our performance and competitive spirit. We have to be united and fight.”
“Then we can say that we are looking forward to the game against Korea to get a good result. When I say good result, I mean victory,” he added, “On the soccer field, everything is possible. Only those who believe in themselves can create greatness,” he said.
“We are very excited to play in front of our home fans. The first home game is very important and we will do our best to live up to the expectations of the whole country. We will fight for a good result and ultimately strive to get a good result,” he added.