South Korea are ready for Russian power, says Yong

The defender says his side are well prepared for the superior strength of Fabio Capello's men and is hopeful the conditions will not be difficult in Cuiaba
South Korea defender Lee Yong says his team are well prepared for the physical challenge against Russia in their World Cup Group H opener.

The Taeguk Warriors face Fabio Capello's men on Tuesday in Cuiaba and the Ulsan Hyundai full-back is well aware of the threats the Russians will bring.

"The Russian team is strong in many respects," he said. "Russian teams are technical and physically stronger than Asian teams but we have been well-prepared."

South Korea, coached by 2002 World Cup hero Hong Myung Bo, are outsiders to qualify from a group that also contains fancied Belgium as well as Algeria, particularly following their humbling 4-0 defeat to Ghana in their final World Cup warm-up.

Yong, 26, says the opening game is vital for the squad which contains many of the 2012 Olympic Games bronze medal-winning team.

"The first match is really important," he said. "The players and the manager want to fully focus on this game. It's going to be a good match between us."

Weather conditions in Cuiaba, one of Brazil's hottest cities, have eased in the last few days and the temperature is expected to be a manageable 27 degrees Celsius come kick-off at 18:00 local time.

"It's a little bit hotter than what I'm used to," said Yong. "But today's weather is not really hot so I feel grateful."