Son leads defence-heavy South Korea squad

South Korea football coach Shin Tae-yong announces his 28-man preliminary roster for the 2018 FIFA World Cup during a press conference at Seoul City Hall in Seoul

A 28-man roster for the upcoming World Cup, which kicks off in a month in Russian Federation, was announced on Monday.

Tottenham Hotspur's Son Heung-min was named in South Korea's 28-man preliminary squad.

South Korea's two English Premier League stars Son Heung-min and Ki Sung-yueng made the cut as expected.

Top-rated Son scored 18 goals in all competitions this term for Spurs, who finished third in the Premier League to secure another season of Champions League football.

A flurry of injuries to several players including Kim Min-jae and Yeom Ki-hun forced Shin to change his plans for the lineup. "I will try to strengthen our defense line and will build up cohesion with new players in the upcoming weeks".

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Shin also handed a first senior call-up to exciting young winger Lee Seung-woo, who was regarded as one of Barcelona's most promising talents at its La Masia youth academy before he made the switch to Italy's Hellas Verona a year ago.

"Even though there's not a lot of time left until the World Cup, they could make it if they impress", Shin told reporters.

The South Korea squad goes into camp on May 21 to prepare for a ninth successive World Cup and Group F games against Sweden, Mexico and Germany, and has warm-up games against Honduras on May 28 and Bosnia and Herzegovina on June 1.

Only nine players remain from the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, when the team went out in the group stage.

Shin said he expects to finalize his final 23-man roster by June 3 and the team will travel to Austria and a training camp that includes friendlies against Bolivia and Senegal.

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