Driven Chun Nam pose threat to Valley

DESPITE the absence of two national-team strikers, South Korea's Chun Nam will consider themselves failures if they draw against Happy Valley in their Asian Cup-Winners' Cup soccer clash at Mongkok Stadium this afternoon, according to their secretary-general, Park Kang-hun.

Chun Nam, who were only founded in 1994, are chasing their first international title in this tournament.Today's match is the East Asia zone quarter-final, first-leg.

In the previous round they scored a convincing 2-0 victory against Beijing Guo'an in the past round.

Happy Valley will play the away leg next Saturday, with the winning side facing the winners of the Kashima Antlers (Japan) v Sarawak (Malaysia) contest in the East Asia zone final.

Chun Nam's strike force, however, has been weakened by the loss of two World Cup squad members - Roh Sang-rae through injury and Kim Doh-keun, who is training with English Premier League side West Ham, alongside South Korea's top striker Choi Yong-soo in London.

The team will feature two other World Cup players, though - midfielder Kim Jong-hyun and defender Kim Tae-young.

'Kim [Doh-kuen] was supposed to come today from London, but the (airline) schedule doesn't match with him, so he will go back to Korea directly,' Park said, adding that his side will have to risk using inexperienced strikers up front.

One of them, Jung Yoon-gil, has just finished university, while the other, Kim Hae-chool, is a national youth player just out of high school.

'We just signed them for two months,' Park said.

However, Park said they are quality players and he is not expecting to lose today's game. Chun Nam will not even be satisfied with a draw, he added.

While Happy Valley are likely to field three foreign players, Chun Nam have only brought along one import - Brazilian defender Maciel Luiz Franco.

Happy Valley, the first-phase champions of Hong Kong's First Division, will also have their forward line weakened.

John Moore has been hit by a stomach injury and the sad news that his mother is suffering from cancer.

Aries Chow