‘Big’ Jung Woo-young continues his career in the Middle East.바카라
Saudi Arabia’s Khaleej announced via the club’s social media channels on the 20th (KST), “Khaleej, led by owner Allah Al Hemmle, has signed South Korea international midfielder Jung Woo-young. The contract is for the 2023-2024 season. Chung becomes the first South Korean player in Khaleej’s history.
The midfielder, who has been with Qatar’s Al Sadd since 2018, recently ended his contract with the club. Now that he is a free agent, he has been receiving offers. Japan, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, as well as K League clubs have been linked. He chose Saudi Arabia, which has recently emerged as the Eldorado of international football. Jung Woo-young would once again play in the Middle East.
The official was special. It was a parody of the drama “The Squid Game,” which attracted worldwide attention. It also highlighted his career with Vissel Kobe (Japan), Chongqing Liangjiang (China) and Al Saad. His appearances at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar were also highlighted, as well as his 373 professional appearances. The club’s official channel also released a video of Jung Woo-young on the training ground. He did some light running as well as kicking the ball around. The camera also captured his new teammates looking on.
Since turning professional in 2011, Jung has been playing overseas. He started with Kyoto Sanga in Japan, followed by Jubilo Iwata and Vissel Kobe. He then moved to China. He played for Chongqing. In 2018, he moved to Qatar. He played as a key midfielder for Al Sadd. He won several league titles with the likes of Xavi Hernandez and Nam Tae-hee.
He also established himself with the national team. After making a surprise appearance at the 2012 London Olympics, where he helped South Korea to a bronze medal, Jung has been a regular on the national team ever since. He has made 72 appearances for the national team, scoring three goals. He has been a regular in Paulo Bento’s side and was a key part of the team’s World Cup round of 16 campaign in Qatar. He missed the A-League in June due to injury, but played in all the A-League matches in March, when Jürgen Klinsmann made his debut. The likes of Park Yong-woo and Won Doo-jae have tried to fill the void left by Jeong, but more often than not, they have fallen short. Jung is regarded as one of the best midfielders in Asia, with an excellent tactical understanding, passing, technical and defensive skills.
His new club, Kalis, won promotion to the top flight last season after a six-year absence. They avoided relegation by finishing 14th in a close finish. Now that they’re back in the top flight, they’ve made some big signings to help them go further. Jung Woo-young joins the likes of Lisandro Lopez, Pedro Amaral and Lucas Sousa as foreign signings. He joins Kim Seung-kyu and Jang Hyun-soo as the third players to play in the Saudi league.
Jung Woo-young will be facing some superstars in Saudi Arabia. Al Nasr’s Cristiano Ronaldo will face Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante (Al Ittihad), Kalidou Koulibaly, Hubeng Neves (Al Hilal), Edouard Mendy and Roberto Firmino (Al Ahli). ‘Legend’ Steven Gerrard, the first Englishman to take charge of a Saudi club, is on the bench at Al Ittifaq. The Saudis continue to be keen to bring in new players. Many superstars have been linked.
The kingdom, which is bidding to host the 2030 World Cup, has been focusing on “growing the game,” having recently won the right to host the 2023 Club World Cup, which will be followed by the 2027 Asian Cup. The kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund (PIF) bought English Premier League side Newcastle United and has a star-studded roster. Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, dubbed “Mr Everything,” is keen to raise the country’s international profile through sport.
The kingdom recently captured the world’s attention with its bid to sign Lionel Messi. The kingdom offered an astronomical €400 million to sign Messi. Messi ultimately chose to join Inter Miami in the United States after much deliberation. While some have criticised the move as ‘sportswashing’ to wash away the image of a human rights abuser, it’s hard to resist Saudi Arabia’s astronomical ‘oil money’. The PIF, already headed by Crown Prince Salman, holds a 75 per cent stake in Al Nasr, Al Hilal, Al Ittihad and Al Ahli, giving it direct influence over player signings. This gives it the ability to invest more in the future.