Son reveals why he keeps throwing away his protective face mask
The South Korean star has been sporting a facial accessory since breaking his eye socket before the Qatar 2022 World Cup finals. Son acknowledges that he is getting tired of the stated mask after the Spurs forward started tossing it aside against Aston Villa in a recent match before doing it once more when he scored a key Premier League goal against Crystal Palace.
Son has told Standard Sport of his desire to see the back of the uncomfortable mask, which may go against the wishes of certain family members and club doctors: “Obviously, it’s not the same as when I play without the mask. My vision is still okay, but when the ball is coming to me, it’s sometimes annoying, because I can’t see the ball because of the mask. It’s not really bothering me, but it’s not the best. Against Villa, I was really frustrated, because I received the ball and then suddenly I lost the ball, because I couldn’t see it. I was just angry.
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“If I’m alone, obviously, I would play without the mask, but my parents, my family, my friends watching back in South Korea are all worried. Obviously, it’s a risk if someone hits me again. They [my parents] didn’t say you should wear it or whatever, but we were having dinner [after the Villa game] and they said, ‘Um, what happened with the mask?’ Obviously, they’re worried. And also the physios and doctors said after the Villa game, ‘It’s your decision, but we recommend you should still be wearing the mask’, because the risk is still high, because it’s just seven weeks since the operation.”
Son is aware that he needs to take every precaution to prevent suffering another injury setback after having to have surgery to treat a fracture near his eye socket, but he also wants to get rid of a mask that is affecting his performance.
Son shared the Premier League Golden Boot in 2021–22 with 23 goals in the top division, but he has scored on only six occasions in all competitions this year. Son will be hoping that a strong performance in a 4-0 win over Palace can reopen the floodgates.