Tottenham striker Heung-min Son will miss the first month of the Premier League season. The South Korean striker is set to play in the Asian Games. Tottenham were reluctant to let Son miss the opening of the Premier League season but ultimately gave in to the player’s wishes.
Tottenham striker to miss the start of Premier League season
Son is still obliged to serve in the South Korean military. The country has mandatory service requirements of 21-months for all males. Son could have earned a reprieve if the South Korean national team had performed better at the World Cup. However, the team’s elimination means he is still obliged to serve his country.
South Korean males up to the age of 28 must serve in the military. Tottenham hope a good performance at the Asian Games will prevent the striker from participating in his mandatory service.
The Tottenham striker hopes the team can perform well at the Asian Games and earn a reprieve from military service. The tournament is an under-23 competition but allows three overaged players appear for each team. Son is 26-years old and wants to compete in the event as one of South Korea’s three overaged members.
Tottenham do not have to release Son for the tournament as the Asian Games is not a FIFA calendar sanctioned tournament. The Asian Games will begin on August 14, just three days after Spurs play Newcastle in their first match of the season.
Park Chu-yong, a former Arsenal and Monaco striker, postponed his military service for a decade. His lawyers were able to find a way around the South Korean law demanding service.
South Korea’s domestic league regularly sees its players forced to leave their clubs to serve in the military. K-League club Sangju Sangmu FC is a sports club that represents the military. Many of the players serving their mandatory service play for the club.
Son could miss five to six Premier League fixtures while away at the Asian Games.