‘You just focus on the game, we’ll protect the team.’
On the weekend of last month, the 23rd round match between Seongnam FC and Suwon FC in K-League 1, held at Tancheon Sports Complex in Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi-do, on the weekend of last month, was full of earnestness. Seongnam FC’s allied supporters, ‘Blacklist’, supported the team by putting up banners all over the stadium. Seongnam FC, which has been engulfed in political controversy, seemed to face the recent rumors about the sale and dissolution of Seongnam FC.
◆ ‘Focus on the game, we will protect the team’… Destiny changed by earnestness
In this match, Seongnam FC united and beat rival Suwon FC 2-1 to escape from the swamp of three consecutive losses. It was a valuable victory in the debut match of acting manager Jeong Kyung-ho, which was held right after Kim Nam-il’s resignation. Although it was still at the bottom of the rankings, the team, which was pushed into the crisis of team dissolution amid poor performance, seemed to have prepared a turning point for a rebound. “The ‘butterfly effect’ in Seongnam is just beginning,” Chung said with a strong sense of humor.
Did their earnestness reach the sky?
Seongnam City decided to attract investment with the goal of maintaining the hometown of Seongnam FC, a civic club that has been caught up in rumors of a sale and dissolution. After a certain period of investment attraction activities, there was a ‘clue’ to decide whether to operate Seongnam FC through a comprehensive evaluation, but the urgent fire for the team’s survival is extinguished.
According to Seongnam City on the 2nd, investment attraction is conducted with all possibilities open by determining favorable conditions for the sale of 100% of the management right and transfer of the stake. The purpose is to overcome the current situation in which 11 to 15 billion won of blood tax is injected annually by attracting investment.
A city official explained, “After a media interview with Mayor Shin Sang-jin, the owner of the club, as an opportunity, there were rumors of the club’s sale and dissolution, along with rumors of a relocation.
◆ 15 billion won in annual blood tax input… Sale of management rights and transfer of stake with the goal of ‘maintaining the hometown’
The rumors about the sale and dissolution of Seongnam FC arose after an interview with the mayor of the new media. In an interview with the Segye Ilbo, Mayor Shin expressed his skepticism about the operation of Seongnam FC, citing that the club is being investigated for ‘suspicion of misappropriation of donations from large corporations’.
He criticized the negligent management of city-affiliated and investment institutions such as Seongnam Urban Development Corporation, and said of Seongnam FC, “As it has lost the energy of civic integration, it should be dismantled or sold as soon as possible from a socio-economic point of view.” He also asked for his understanding, saying, “Unlike the position of the football world, from the perspective of the city’s finance manager, we have no choice but to make a comprehensive judgment.”
However, the new mayor said that nothing has been confirmed and put a ‘condition’ to collect citizens’ opinions and put it into action quickly. It means to listen to the opinions of citizens, that is, public opinion first.
After the interview of Mayor Shin was released, Seongnam FC’s supporters and others issued a statement, and the Internet bulletin board heated up about the team’s survival. On the 28th of last month, when Seongnam FC’s home game was held, a signature campaign against the dissolution was held near Tancheon Sports Complex.
Football star Hwang Ui-jo (Olympiacos FC) from Seongnam FC also recently posted on his Instagram, saying, “(The rumor of Seongnam FC disbandment) is a sad and heavy thing” and “a team that must exist in Korean football history” cheered
Seongnam = Correspondent Oh Sang-do [email protected]
[ⓒ 세계일보 & Segye.com, 무단전재 및 재배포 금지]
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