This winter, the ‘biggest fish’ in the free agent (FA) market was Joo Min-gyu (33). It has been several years since he established himself as one of the league’s top strikers with his chunky body and nimble movements. In the 2021 season, he became a Korean player who regained the top scorer that he gave away to a foreign player for 5 years, and last season also scored the most points in the league (17 goals, 37 games), but Jeonbuk Hyundai’s Cho Kyu-seong (17 goals, 31 games) scored fewer games. Gyeonggi) narrowly gave up the top scorer spot.메이저사이트

The biggest topic of discussion was which team Joo Min-gyu, a strong candidate for the top scorer, would go to, but it ended surprisingly lightly. In mid-December, when the FA market began in earnest, Joo Min-gyu chose Ulsan Hyundai, the champion team of the previous season, early on. When asked if he could have thought about it longer, he said, “It wasn’t easy to reject Ulsan, led by Hong Myung-bo.”

◇Returning to his parents’ home after 3 years

Joo Min-gyu played in Ulsan for the 2019 season. At that time, it was not yet ripe, but he said, “I learned a lot from the traditional Ulsan.” And while he spent three seasons in Jeju, he developed into a powerful striker and returned home with a sense of pride. “When I played against Ulsan last season, I felt that there were no gaps in every way. I wanted to learn from coach Hong Myung-bo, who created such a team.”

Joo Min-gyu is said to have been greatly impressed by coach Hong as soon as he started training with him. “The coach said that at the first team meeting. ‘It’s right that all coaches and players are equally respected with no gaps. Whatever you think is right or wrong, say it anytime.’ It wouldn’t be easy to let go of authority like this, but I thought I was a great person.”

Joo Min-kyu’s biggest goal is to win the league. “I haven’t won a league championship yet. It would be nice to be the top scorer again, but more than anything, I want to be the first to achieve the championship that the team needs most.”

Joo Min-gyu is sometimes considered an unlucky player due to his lack of national team experience compared to his excellent skills. However, he said, “It motivates me and gives me the driving force to run more.” If he scores a goal and gives Ulsan a championship cup, his chances of achieving his national team dream will increase.

◇ ‘Star’ Cho Kyu-seong and another competition

The player who most strongly threatens Jo Min-gyu’s top scorer next season is Cho Kyu-seong (25) of Jeonbuk. Cho Kyu-seong, who has explosive speed and accurate shooting despite his tall height, finished last season and became a national star by scoring two goals in the 2022 Qatar World Cup against Ghana. He chose to stay in Jeonbuk even though his European advance was just around the corner. In January, Cho Kyu-seong said, “I will do my best where I am. Going to Europe is next.”

Joo Min-kyu has a competitor even on the same team. It is Martin Adam (29), who joined in the middle of last season and contributed to Ulsan’s victory by scoring 9 goals in 14 games. Even though Martin Adam dominates the air with a tall height of 190 cm, he also has a ‘football’ that sprinkles passes to various places. Joo Min-gyu said, “He is a friend who understands Ulsan’s soccer well. We will compete in good faith.”

Hwang Ui-jo (31) of FC Seoul, who briefly returned to the domestic stage after six seasons, is also one of the strong contenders for the top scorer. Hwang Eui-jo expressed his aspirations, “I will score in many matches and win as many as possible.”


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