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More worries for Rafa Benitez as Ki Sung-yeung forced off injured in opening Asian Cup match

6 months ago
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Ki Sung-yeung kicked off his Asian Cup campaign on Monday but it didn’t exactly go according to plan.

Expected to easily beat the Philippines in their opening Group C match, instead South Korea were drawing 0-0 as they approached the hour mark.

The Newcastle man pulled up with a suspected hamstring injury in the 58th minute and was promptly subbed.

No news as yet on how serious it is likely to be but the last thing Rafa Benitez needs is another player with injury problems.

Mohamed Diame was forced off due to injury against Man Utd on Wednesday, whilst Isaac Hayden had a shocking game on Saturday against Blackburn, having once again said he is desperate to leave Newcastle United as soon as possible.

Today then brought news that Jonjo Shelvey is flying to Barcelona to see a specialist once again, as he aggravates a thigh issue whenever trying to step up and play competitive football with the first team.

Shelvey hasn’t started a first team game in 10 weeks and even when making relatively brief appearances off the bench, it is still causing him pain in the thigh afterwards.

As for South Korea, nine minutes after Ki Sung-yeung was replaced, they found a winner, Hwang Ui-jo scoring the goal.

South Korea were runners-up in the last staging of the Asian Cup and now join China on three points at the top of Group C.

Ki Sung-yeung was due to play on Friday (11th) and next Wednesday (16th), however, it now remains to be seen if he plays any further part in the tournament.

As for Yoshinori Muto, he and Japan begin their group matches with a game against Turkmenistan on Wednesday.

Asian Cup matches/schedule for Ki Sung-yeung and Yoshinori Muto:

Monday 7 January

South Korea 1 Philippines 0

Wednesday 9 January

Japan v Turkmenistan

Friday 11 January

South Korea v Kyrgyzstan

Sunday 13 January

Japan v Oman

Wednesday 16 January

South Korea v China

Thursday 17 January

Japan v Ukbekisatan

After the group stages the knockout games are played:

Last 16 matches are 20-22 January

Quarter finals are 24 and 25 January

Semi finals 28 and 29 January

Final is 1 February

Newcastle United upcoming matches:

Saturday 12 January 2019 (BT Sport)

Chelsea v Newcastle (5.30pm)

Tuesday 15 January or Wednesday 16 January 2019

Blackburn v Newcastle

Saturday 19 January 2019

Newcastle v Cardiff (3pm)

Saturday 26 January 2019 (weekend of)

Potential FA Cup fourth round match

Tuesday 29 January 2019 (BT Sport)

Newcastle v Man City (8pm)

Saturday 2 February 2019 (Sky Sports)

Tottenham v Newcastle (12.30pm)

Monday 11 February 2019 (Sky Sports)

Wolves v Newcastle (8pm)

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