SEOUL, Sept. 18 (Korea Bizwire) — More than 70 percent of South Koreans believe the men’s national football team needs to hire Dutch tactician Guus Hiddink for the FIFA World Cup next year, a survey showed Monday.
In the survey of 505 adults conducted by Realmeter nationwide last week, 70.2 percent said that Hiddink should be given a job, whether as a coach or a technical advisor, within the national football team for the World Cup in Russia. Hiddink previously guided South Korea to the 2002 World Cup semifinals.
The survey was conducted last Friday, just a day after Hiddink told reporters in Amsterdam that he is willing to help South Korea in any way, though the 70-year-old put more emphasis on advising rather than coaching. Its margin of error was plus or minus 4.4 percentage points with a 95 percent confidence level.
South Korea, set to make a ninth consecutive World Cup appearance, are now led by Shin Tae-yong, who took the helm in July after his predecessor Uli Stielike was sacked by the Korea Football Association.
The survey showed that South Koreans are split on who they prefer for head coach, with both Shin and Hiddink earning 43.6 percent support.
When asked about their preferred managerial system for the national football team, 26.6 percent answered they want Shin working as head coach with Hiddink supporting him as technical advisor. Twenty-two percent said they would like to see Hiddink as sole head coach, while 21.6 percent preferred a system with Hiddink as head coach and Shin as his chief assistant. Seventeen percent responded that they want Shin to take the helm without Hiddink.
By gender, 26.6 percent of men said they want Hiddink serving as sole head coach, while 29 percent women preferred the pairing of head coach Shin and technical advisor Hiddink.