Just when it started to look hopeless -we got news many Tavern goers have been waiting all day for, hell really the entire month for. The Taeguk-gi flag is hoisted once more as we are astounded by the last minute announced transfer of Park Chu-Young on season loan to English Championship side Watford, the very team that had Manchester City on the ropes for a good spell last weekend in the FA Cup. But first let’s go to the Weekend Listing, provided courtesy of Korean Footballers Abroad
|Saturday||7:45 AM||Ki Sung Yueng||Sunderland||@Newcastle||NBCSN|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Hong Jeong Ho||Augsburg||Werder Bremen||None|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Ji Dong Won||Augsburg||Werder Bremen||None|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Son Heung Min||Bayer Leverkusen||Stuttgart||None|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Koo Ja Cheol||Mainz||Freiburg||None|
|Saturday||9:30 AM||Park Joo Ho||Mainz||Freiburg||None|
|Saturday||10:00 AM||Lee Chung Yong||Bolton||@Ipswich Town||None|
|Saturday||10:00 AM||Kim Bo Kyung||Cardiff City||Norwich City||NBC Extra Time|
|Sunday||10:30 AM||Park Ji Sung||PSV Eindhoven||RKC Waalwijk||None|
…and now we can add to Sunday: 10 AM Park Chu-Young / Watford v Brighton & Hove Albion. And later on Saturday afternoon, it’s the MLS vs K League as the USMNT take on the Taeguk Warriors at the Stubb Hub Center in Carson City California 2pm PST/5 pm EST/7 am Sunday Korea Time. Game in the US is on ESPN2. According the the US Soccer Assocation, all 27,000 seats are sold out – should be practically a home game for the KNT… In the leadup to the game, US coach Jurgen Klinsman, who used to be on the opposite side of the pitch back in the day with a certain Cha Bum-Kun, a broadcast analyst for team Korea -both got a chance to reconnect earlier today.
Want to hear something (kinda) amazing? Remember that Hong Myong-Bo played a season in 2004 with the LA Galaxy? The equipment manager then, Raul Vargas, is still manager today. 11 years on, he still has Hong’s boots and brought them out for the occasion as Hong returned to his old franchise stadium.
We’ll summarize the entire January transfer happenings for Korean players in Europe soon, a very productive window really, but I just want to let the news sink in (which Jinseok delivered to the Tavern with timeliness and absolute joy). Harry Houdini got nothing on Park Chu-Young. And just when you thought the 11 pm GMT deadline had passed – BAM he escapes Arsenal purgatory for the 2nd time.
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) January 31, 2014
and so it is time to follow another twitter account…
OFFICIAL: #watfordfc have signed Arsenal forward Park Chu-Young on loan until the end of the season, subject to Premier League clearance.
— Official #watfordfc (@watfordfcsays) January 31, 2014
According to Yonhap news, Hong Myong-bo was pleased with the transfer. They noted that the Taeguk Warriors coach “sent a message of cheer to Park.”
“I feel much relieved that he can make a fresh start,” said Hong, who spoke in Los Angeles for pre-World Cup training camp. “Park will have to show a good performance in the coming matches.”
As the night brings on dreams of what’s possible – it’s hard not to visualize what this transfer and with it the significant game time means for Park and for the KNT. Not only is this transfer news practically Park’s ticket to Brazil, it could very well unlock some scoring options up front for Hong Myong-Bo’s side as they fine tune final preparations for the World Cup. For the moment however, success is still not a certainty, but at the very least it is another chance for Park to revitalize his career and make an impact in Europe and beyond…
and why not revisit an earlier time when Park was making headway in France for AS Monaco? The weekend is here. DaeHanminguk!