Tottenham's Heung-min Son wins Asian Games to avoid South Korea military service
South Korea beat Japan 2-1 in Asian Games final in Indonesia
By Sky Sports News
Last Updated: 01/09/18 11:16pm
Tottenham forward Heung-min Son will avoid military service after captaining South Korea to a gold medal at the Asian Games.
The country will grant the Spurs winger and his international team-mates an exemption after they beat Japan 2-1 after extra time at the final in Indonesia, to scenes of jubilation in Cibinong.
Tottenham allowed Son to miss their Premier League games against Fulham, Manchester United and Sunday's clash with Watford, which live on Sky Sports Football, to compete in the tournament, and South Korea's triumph hung in the balance with a 0-0 scoreline after 90 minutes.
But a tired-looking Son still stepped up in extra-time with a contribution to both of goals, ensuring a player who signed a new five-year Tottenham contract this year will not face having his club career interrupted by his country's otherwise mandatory 21-month military service.
Son danced into the Japan penalty area early in the first period of extra-time and, as the forward prepared to pull the trigger, Verona forward Seung-Woo Lee swept in to rifle the ball into the top-left corner of the Japan net.
He then won a free-kick on the left side of Japan's box, and floated the set-piece to the far post where on-loan Hamburg striker Hwang Hee-Chan rose highest to double South Korea's lead.
Japan pulled a goal back through youngster Ayase Ueda's header five minutes from the end of extra-time but were unable to send the match to penalties.
Defeat for South Korea would have seen Son - who turned 26 last month - lose another of a dwindling number of chances to avoid military service before the age of 28.
Son featured in Tottenham's 2-1 opening day win against Newcastle before leaving for the games, and he must now look to win his place back from the impressive Lucas Moura in Mauricio Pochettino's side.