South Korea (0-0-0) vs. Russia (0-0-0), 6 p.m. (ET)
06/17/2014 9:10 AM
06/17/2014 9:36 AM
Cuiaba, Brazil (SportsNetwork.com) - Fabio Capello returns to the World Cup as manager of Russia, and his side will open Group H play against South Korea at the Arena Pantanal on Tuesday.
Capello crashed out of the 2010 World Cup as boss of England in the round of 16, which was a big disappointment for the Three Lions.
But the Italian is back on the big stage with Russia, a team that is making its first appearance at the World Cup since 2002.
South Korea, meanwhile, has become a fixture at the tournament, reaching the World Cup for the eighth successive time.
However, if Korea's qualifying campaign is any indication of where the team is at, they could be making a brief stay in Brazil.
South Korea endured a poor qualification cycle that saw the side lose twice to Iran as well as once to Lebanon. But now that Korea has come through it, the Taegeuk Warriors are hoping for a fresh start.
Hong Myung-Bo has since taken charge of the team and the former player will try to get the most out of a young side that is in a bit of a transition period.
Hong is the most-capped player in South Korea's history, and he was a member of the 2002 side that reached the semifinals of the World Cup, so he knows a thing or two about winning.
However, it is tough to see the Koreans having the same kind of success this year, although a favorable draw in Group H gives them a good chance to finish second.
The strength of this team is in the midfield with Sunderland's Ki Sung- Yueng and Cardiff City's Kim Bo-Kyung pulling the strings, and this match with Russia will go a long way toward determining who goes through to the next round.
Capello's side has plenty of experience, but the question in this match will be whether they have the legs to keep up with the youthful Koreans.
Veterans Sergei Ignashevich and Vasili Berezutski will hold things down in the back for Capello, while Alan Dzagoev controls the midfield.
Two players to watch for Russia up top are Aleksander Kokorin and Aleksandr Kerzhakov, who will need to play well for Russia to have a chance at reaching the knockout round.
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