Tim’s come down with the cold – let’s wish him a speedy recovery -though I suspect there’s only one way for him to feel better: a weekend of football! Korean ‘ballers in Europe and K-League listings up next…
From Korean Footballers Abroad, here’s some top flight games to watch (all times US EST/ TV listing in the US):
|Friday||3:30 PM||Son Heung Min||Bayer Leverkusen||Stuttgart||GolTV|
|Saturday||8:45 AM||Lee Chung Yong||Crystal Palace||QPR||NBCSN|
|Saturday||8:45 AM||Yun Suk Young||QPR||@Crystal Palace||NBCSN|
|Saturday||10:30 AM||Hong Jeong Ho||Augsburg||Mainz||None|
|Saturday||10:30 AM||Ji Dong Won||Augsburg||Mainz||None|
|Saturday||10:30 AM||Kim Jin Su||Hoffenheim||Hamburg||None|
|Saturday||10:30 AM||Koo Ja Cheol||Mainz||@Augsburg||None|
|Saturday||10:30 AM||Park Joo Ho||Mainz||@Augsburg||None|
|Saturday||11:00 AM||Kim Bo Kyung||Wigan||@Rotherham||None|
|Sunday||12:00 AM||Suk Hyun Jun||Vitoria Setubal||@Guimaraes||None|
|Monday||4:00 PM||Ki Sung Yueng||Swansea||Liverpool||NCCSN|
*Let’s add Ryu Seung-Woo (Leverkusen) to Sunday fixtures, so far he’s scored 4 goals on loan with Eintracht Braunschweig. They visit Sandhausen in a 2.Bundesliga match on Sunday @8:30am EST.
I failed to feature this Q&A last week by Son Heung-Min from UEFA’s Champions League website. ICYMI, you can find a link for that here. Not a surprise from the Q&A: Cristiano Ronaldo is a player he models his own style after. Bayer Leverkusen plays today and next Tuesday in the 2nd leg at Atletico Madrid in the Champions League round of 16. Leverkusen leads 1-0.
K-League Classic round 2
From Modern Seoul, their round 2 preview & prediction:
* Derby alert: East Coast derby between Ulsan and Pohang
Saturday March 14th 2015:
FC Seoul vs. Jeonbuk Hyundai 1:00 AM EST/2pm Korea
Saturdays is game features FC Seoul and reigning champions Jeonbuk Hyundai.
FC Seoul looked poor has they were beaten 2-0 last weekend vs. Ulsan Hyundai.
On the other hand Jeonbuk Hyundai look strong as they beat Seongnam FC.
Even though Seoul have just signed Park Chu-Young, he won’t be the difference in this one (likely not playing due to paperwork sorting). We see it for Jeonbuk.
Prediction: 1 – 2
Suwon Bluewings vs. Incheon United 1:00 AM EST/2pm Korea
Saturdays 2nd game is between Suwon Bluewings and Incheon United.
Suwon Bluewings lost a tight game last week at home vs. Pohang Steelers.
Incheon United were unlucky to draw last weekend, conceding with the final kick off the game vs. Gwangju
Although Suwon lost last weekend Incheon here a slightly weaker level of opponents.
Prediction: 2 – 1
Seongnam FC vs. Jeonnam Dragons 3:00 AM EST/4 PM Korea
Saturdays late game features 2014 FA Cup winners Seongnam FC hosting Jeonnam Dragons.
Seongnam FC lost last weekend against defending champions Jeonbuk Hyundai 2-0.
Jeonnam Dragons played out a 1-1 draw vs. Jeju United last weekend.
Seongnam at home can be strong and therefore we’re siding with a home win.
Prediction: 1 – 0
Sunday March 15th 2015:
Daejeon Citizen vs. Gwangju 1:00 AM EST/2PM Korea
Sundays first game features the 2 promoted sides as Daejeon Citizen host Gwangju.
Daejeon Citizen looked off the pace last weekend as they lost vs. Busan I’Park.
Gwangju saved a point in the dieing moments last weekend on the road vs. Incheon United.
This is a tricky one to call, overall we see this ending in draw.
Prediction: 0 – 0
Pohang Steelers vs. Ulsan Hyundai 1:15 AM EST/2:15PM Korea
Sundays second game features two of the leagues bigger sides as 2013 champions Pohang Steelers host local rivals Ulsan Hyundai.
Pohang Steelers recorded a solid victory on the road last weekend over Suwon Bluewings 1-0.
Ulsan Hyundai eased to a 2-0 victory over FC Seoul last weekend.
Both sides are currently unbeaten and look evenly matched, so a draw seems a likely outcome.
Prediction: 1 – 1
Jeju United vs. Busan I’Park 3:00 AM EST/4 PM Korea
Sundays late game comes of Korea’s Southern Island, as Jeju United host Busan I’Park.
Jeju United shared the points in a evenly contested draw vs. Jeonnam Dragons last week.
Busan I’Park edged past a poor Daejeon last weekend.
We think this will be a close one, but Jeju might just edge it on the day.
Prediction: 1 – 0
>>Hey hey, Tim here, down with an awful flu. Doesn’t help that the flu vaccine success rate in Quebec is 0%…anyhow here are my predictions:
Seoul 0-2 Jeonbuk (Seoul were woeful last week and while they wait for PCY Jeonbuk certainly has the edge after a mostly convincing game last weekend.)
Suwon 1-0 Incheon
Seongnam 1-1 Jeonnam
Daejeon 1-1 Gwangju
Pohang 1-2 Ulsan
Jeju 2-0 Buusan
Back to Roy…
Not sure in Korea, usually KBS, Naver, MBC and Spotv airs matches domestically.
For those outside Korea, SPOTV has been airing some of the K-League matches live (streaming on their youtube channel). I saw a good part of Incheon v Gwangju, the first game to kickoff the season last weekend on SPOTV and it was high quality stream with Korean commentary (which I adore for their energy -next to latino football announcers, they come close to matching their gusto, especially when a goal is scored). I understand there’s a way to stream the matches from other Korean networks like KBS, requires a bit of extra work – we’ll see if we can post that information on the Tavern soon.
>>Tim interrupting again (sneeze). The Seoul-Jeonbuk game will be on SPOTV and TBS Seoul live streams. Look them up on youtube and enjoy HD quality on your tablet, phone or computer! Back to Roy…
While watching live at 1 AM in the US east coast might be tough, US west coast Tavern goers can tune in at a more reasonable 10 PM. If you live, oh say in Hawaii, even better – 7 PM – not a bad time for a luau/K-League partay. Hollar back, let the Tavern know if you tuned in to the K-League and where in the world you’re at. Even better – if you had a K-League viewing party – tweet or email pics – we’ll post that on the Tavern (provided the photos are legit and aren’t doctored, Kim Jong-un propaganda style, feel me?)
There’s Koreans abroad in Japan and the Middle East of course, but running short on time, we aren’t able to get to it now, mein-ham-nee-da! Anything noteworthy in this category should time allow, we’ll post it. Derek is nearly ready with a KPA in China post, stay tuned for that…
Nearly forgot, one player that stood out to me in round 1 was Gwanju’s right back Lee Jong min. Some decent footwork on display as he evaded Incheon’s advanced press. He wound up scoring the equalizer in a wild 2-2 finish, kicking off the 1st game of the 2015 season. I don’t know if he’ll be a KNT contender however, at age 31 he might be out of range, but who knows.
A moment back in time…
Wandering around the BSK forum yesterday, couldn’t help but notice someone posted this highlight video from an exhibition match from back in 2005. While we all know Germany bested Korea by a single goal by Ballack in 2002’s epic World Cup semifinal, Michael Ballack and Germany returned for a friendly against a Korea side without their star players Park Ji-Sung, Lee Young-Pyo and Ahn Jung-Hwan (presumably injured then as it looked like Germany had fielded a hybrid A/B squad). Despite that, the Taeguk Warriors took the lead with an early goal, Kim Dong-Jin rocketed a shot in from a rebound. Ballack curled in a freekick around the wall to draw level, but Korea wasn’t done. Lee Dong-Gook of all people supernaturally turned around his body to volley a jaw-dropping shot past the keeper. Germany would win a penalty kick (handball violation) with Ballack ready to equalize again. The narrative would turn on it’s head again as Korea’s netminder misdirected Ballack by leaning to his right, then accurately forecasted Ballack, leaped suddenly to his left to knock the ball away. Later, a fast counter ended with Cha Du-ri collecting a deflected cross, who (similar to his future 2015 self in the Asian Cup) brilliantly found Cho Jae-Jin on the far post- he nailed it and Korea would go on to beat Jurgen Klinsman’s side 3-1. That happened somehow a decade ago…
Rev up the time machine again, we’re getting close to the anniversary since Korea’s U16 squad was tearing it up in the AFCU16 championship in Thailand. They qualified for the U17 2015 World Cup in style, with Barcelona academy stars Lee Seung-Woo and Jang Gyeol-Hee showcasing their talents. Actually, many in this young squad had moments of brilliance. This video clip highlights Lee Seung-Woo’s 4 goals in 3 consecutive games during the AFCU16 tourney, let’s take a step back in time to see a bit of brightness on the horizon, shall we?
The U17 World Cup will be held in Chile Oct 17-Nov 8th.
I can’t help it, I’ve got one more video to share, this came on my radar last night via youtube alert. There’s this football school in Korea called JK Art Soccer Academy, looks like some futsal-esque footwork+ instruction going on with this crew, this quick 20 sec clip shows some eye catching stuff, take a look:
Ok so I admit, I’m pretty pumped about Park Chu-Young and FC Seoul. While the football romantic in me is for the perpetual underdogs in the K-League, the city funded clubs like Gwangju, Seongnam and Daejeon Citzens, PCY was an exciting player to watch when I first truly got turned on to Hanguk Chugu. I’m definitely tuning in this season.
My knowledge about Korean football prior to 2011 is relatively limited so I have a question for everyone including my Tavern writers and ex writers (Jae, I know you’re out there!) : what was FC Seoul like when Park Chu-Young and the double dragon duo of Ki Sung-Yeung & Lee Chung-Yong all played together under one tent? I’m looking at roughly between 2006 through 2008. Trabzonspor & Turkey national team manager Senol Gunes was FC Seoul’s boss for part of that time frame. Was there good passing football happening there at the time? Or was it similar to how teams like Jeonbuk win today, mostly physical and direct football? With the dynamic Lee Chung-Yong returning to the EPL with Crystal Palace and Ki Sung-Yeung bossing Swansea’s midfield + surpassing Park Ji-Sung’s single season EPL scoring record, I wonder what FC Seoul with this trio looked like back then?
Here’s a highlight reel, back to the past, a very young Park Chu-Young at FC Seoul: