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Football: South Korea's talks with van Marwijk collapse

South Korea's hopes of appointing Dutchman Bert van Marwijk to succeed Hong Myung-bo as national coach have broken down, the Korea Football Association (KFA) said on Monday (Aug 18).

SEOUL: South Korea's hopes of appointing Dutchman Bert van Marwijk to succeed Hong Myung-bo as national coach have broken down, the Korea Football Association (KFA) said on Monday (Aug 18).

KFA technical director Lee Yong-soo told local media South Korea would rely on a trio of interim coaches for next month's home friendlies against Venezuela and Uruguay, but insisted the search for a full-time foreign manager would continue. "We will keep trying to hire a head coach of foreign nationality," Lee told Yonhap news agency. "In the meantime we will prepare for the two September matches with three (local) coaches."

Hong, who captained South Korea on their famous run to the 2002 World Cup semi-finals, stepped down after their meek World Cup exit in Brazil.

South Korea face Venezuela on Sep 5 and Uruguay on Sep 8 as they build towards the 2015 Asian Cup in Australia in January with Shin Tae-yong, Park Kun-ha and Kim Bong-soo to take charge of the side until a permanent replacement for Hong is hired. "All three have solid experience in coaching," said Lee. "I believe (they) will work together well to provide leadership for the team."

Lee mentioned the tax rate and the issue of where van Marwijk would spend the majority of his time as sources of the KFA's differences with the former Netherlands coach. "He's a great coach," Lee added. "Maybe we will have another opportunity to work with him but we've decided not to pursue the talks any further at this time. The one important thing for us is for the new coach to have passion for the national team and to have the willingness to dedicate himself to improve football in this country."

The KFA have been infatuated with Dutch coaches since Guus Hiddink steered them to the last four of the 2002 World Cup as co-hosts, cementing his place as a national hero in South Korea.

Between 2004 and 2007 Dutch trio Jo Bonfrere, Dick Advocaat and Pim Verbeek all had spells in charge, though South Korea failed to hit the heights achieved under Hiddink's leadership.