Weekend Roundup March 8-10 / Tavern Kickaround

Before we get to the weekend roundup, we saw this tweet about the very tall forward, Kim Shin-Wook:

Well well well, the Wookie is set to join a European team…wait, which European team? If January’s late transfer rejection of QPR’s bid for his services was any indication, his team choices might not be too bad of an option. To be continued…

K League Challenge

Another item before the weekend roundup: the K-League, otherwise known as the new 2nd division of Korean professional football, changed it’s name right before the league was about to get underway. They will now be known as the ‘K-League Challenge’. The rationale made by organizers: calling the 2nd division ‘the K-League’ could add to people’s confusion, as that was the name the 1st division went by for many years. This season, the new 1st division is now the ‘K-League Classic,’ which has been heavily panned by the Tavern along with most other bloggers. Actually, the Tavern has an interesting insight to this name change, one that for now we won’t disclose until later this week. We like throwing a little intrigue and mystery every now and then…

Wait wait, one last item before the roundup begins:

Games upcoming midweek:
TUESDAY March 12
Asian Champions League -group stage
Jeonbuk vs Guangzhou Evergrande 6am EST  /TV in U.S. by ONE WORLD SPORTS
Buriram United vs FC Seoul  8 am EST
English Championship Division
Cardiff vs Leicester City 2:45 pm  Is it finally Kim Bo-Kyung time?
WEDNESDAY March 13
Asian Champions League -group stage
Suwon Bluewings vs Guizhou Renhe 6am EST
FC Bunyodkor vs Pohang Steelers 8am EST
THURSDAY March 14
Europa League
Zenit St Petersburg vs FC Basel  1 pm   Park Joo-Ho expected to start.
And now…

Weekend Roundup

Germany

Bundesliga

Augsburg  M  Ji Dong-Won: 82 minutes in a 1-2 loss to Nurnberg

Augsburg  M  Koo Ja-Cheol: 90minutes in a 1-2 loss to Nurnberg

Greuther Furth  F  Park Jung-Bin: 90 minutes in a 0-3 loss to Hoffenheim  *Park’s first start and first full game for Greuther Furth. Showed flashes of promise despite not scoring.

Hamburg  F  Son Heung-Min: last 20 minutes in a 0-1 victory at Stuttgart.

2.Bundesliga 

Sandhausen  F  Yun Ju-Tae: last 17 minutes in 0-1 loss to TSV 1860 Munich

SPAIN

La Liga

Celta Vigo  F  Park Chu-Young: last 10 minutes in a 1-2 loss to Real Madrid. Jae wrote up his observations of the match in an earlier post — incredibly heartbreaking on Sunday as Park was SO CLOSE to scoring against Real Madrid yet again. Park’s 89th minute header from a Pranjic cross looked certain to get into the top of the net, having already beaten keeper Diego Lopez -instead it crashed against the center crossbar. So incredibly unlucky. Except for his first nervous touch, Park looked dynamic for Celta and did everything but score in the few minutes out there against Real Madrid. If Park manages to keep his chin up and not get too discouraged, his performance should convince coach Abel Resino to give him additional playing time for Celta.

ENGLAND

Premier League

Swansea  M  Ki Sung-Yeung: 90 minutes in a 1-2 loss at West Bromich Albion. Controversy with a disputed offsides call against Lamah prevented what could have been the equalizer for the Swans.

QPR  D  Yun Suk-Young: not in 18 man roster in QPR’s 0-3 win at Sunderland.

QPR  M  Park Ji-Sung: 90 minutes in a 0-3 victory at Sunderland. It was Park Ji-Sung’s 150th EPL appearance, representing 7 + years, mostly with Manchester United. Park for his part earned praise from Rednapp who apparently ‘gambled’ with repositioning Park in the center of the midfield along with Stephane Mbia. The Rangers, who only a few weeks ago looked hopelessly adrift at the bottom of the table, still are at the bottom -with a caveat: their 2 wins in a row (first Premier League back to back wins since 1995) they are a mere 2 potential points from reaching the shores of safety. Take a look at the bottom of the table:

 The Rangers aren’t out of the woods yet by any means, but it’s starting to look like the ‘great escape’ is very much possible. But I digress: back to the roundup…
English Championship Division
Bolton  M  Lee Chung-Yong: 90 minutes in a 1-0 victory over Brighton-Hove Albion. Bolton now finds themselves only 3 points away from 6th position in the table, the last playoff promotion spot.
Cardiff  M  Kim Bo-Kyung: team did not play this weekend.
PORTUGAL
Portuguese Liga
Maritimo  F  Suk Hyun-Jun: 90 minutes in a 2-0 loss at Braga.
SWITZERLAND
Swiss Super League
FC Basel  D  Park Joo-Ho: 90 minutes in a 3-0 win against Young Boys. FC Basel is now in 2nd place, 2 points behind Grasshoppers in the table.
CANADA
MLS
Vancouver  D  Lee Young-Pyo: 90 minutes in a 2-1 victory against Columbus. Note: all 3 Canadian teams won over the weekend, apparently a first in the history of the MLS.
>K-Talk has their K-League Classic Round 2 games in the bag. Check them out here.
 Tavern geopolitical note:It’s back on again: by now you’ve undoubtedly heard about North Korea’s scraping of the armistice, the very thing that ‘temporarily’ halted the Korean War – if by ‘temporarily’ you mean 60 years, you’d be correct. Technically it’s never been officially over, and with the cutting of the hotline between the two nations, one could argue that the great war is back on. Troubling as it sounds, South Korea is not expecting a full scale invasion. More likely: small scale provocations / trouble making shenanigans / the usual attention seeking behavior from the newest ‘Dear Leader’ to get the United States’ attention. It certainly puts a damper on things in the peninsula. Football, while certainly not on the same level of seriousness as national security, nonetheless is impacted, with compulsory military service continuing to hamper the ambitions of the Taeguk Warriors in pursuit of international football greatness. Lee Keun-Ho, the Asian Footballer of the Year must now spend close to 2 years in the military, during which he will still get to play football, but for the relegated Sangju/Army team -rather than going to a choice European club to hone skills to complement the South Korean national team. Meanwhile last weekend, Japanese international Shinji Kagawa registered a hat trick for Manchester United. Shinji, if you recall, won the companion Asian Footballer of the Year award given to an Asian abroad. The contrast in how each players season is turning out couldn’t be more stark. Is it any coincidence then that South Korea recently dropped in FIFA rankings to 38th place to Japan’s ranking at 28th. Today’s Kim Jong-Un trantrum-de-jour further cements the wedge between those who feel some flexibility can be afforded to potential football ambassadors like Lee Keun-Ho for the good of the national football program, and those who feel that no flexibility should be granted in order to defend the country -with no room for compromise.

One last note: my local Washington Post newspaper has sparse football coverage. It’s the United States after all, where ‘football’ is known by the brain damaging variety. The Post did mention the Celta Vigo / Real Madrid match, however it gave only a few brief sentences about it, highlighting Cristian Ronaldo’s 2 goals. In the name-game that sometime is all important in world of international football, it was Park Chu-Young’s that was missing – a name that could’ve been etched in ink here in Washington DC -had he scored the glorious equalizer. This damn game comes down to mere centimeters – so close, yet so far away. Of all of his close chances at scoring this season, a few of those opportunities came from his 3 encounters with Real Madrid. If any of them had converted, who knows in what way that could’ve changed destiny and fortune, both for Park and for Celta – a rip in the space/time continuum if you will. The season is not over, and despite some setback recently for Park’s progress within the team (as well as negative press coverage in the Spanish press for his lack of goals scored -unfairly not taken into account his lack of minutes given), those 10 minutes Park was on the pitch against Real Madrid represented something tangible and positive. This match will be long forgotten, but if coach Abel did indeed see the game that everyone in the Balidos and around the football televised world witnessed, we haven’t seen the last of Park yet, nor of the possible role he could play to help the team overcome the obstacles to stay up in La Liga.

 

About Roy Ghim 403 Articles

The old Tavern Owner

2 Comments

  1. Both the K-League Classic and K-League Challenge being abbreviated as KLC is really going to help clear up those confusion issues they were worried about!

    • Ha! I’m telling you… Anyone want to wager how long it takes before they eventually conclude they need another name change: KLeague1 & KLeague2?

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