The 2023 season K League 1 has begun. The match between Ulsan Hyundai and Jeonbuk Hyundai on the 25th, the opening match, was held like a festival in the heat of over 20,000 spectators. The atmosphere has been different since the start of the K-League this season.
28,039 spectators gathered at Ulsan Munsu Soccer Stadium, where the opening game between Ulsan and Jeonbuk was held. This is the largest number of spectators in the K-League since the 2020 Corona 19 pandemic. It easily surpassed the record for the highest number of spectators (23,817) in the season between Ulsan and Jeju United last year.
Two hours before kick-off, the area around the stadium was filled with phosphoric acid. Smiles were on the faces of the fans who came to enjoy the food in the stadium and the events prepared by the club in advance.
As cloud spectators gathered, Ulsan general manager Kim Gwang-guk came out of the stadium early to keep an eye on the situation in order to prepare for any unexpected accidents. General Manager Kim, who happened to meet the reporters before the game, said, “I am excited and looking forward to it. It’s been 9 years as the leader, and this is the largest number of spectators. I hope every home game is like this.”
The K-League used to enjoy the effect of ‘box-office synergy’ in the games that took place immediately after the World Cup. As the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar is held in winter for the first time ever, it has only been two months since the World Cup ended, and striker Cho Kyu-seong (Jeonbuk), who can be said to be the best star of the Qatar World Cup, also made a sortie in the Ulsan-Jeonbuk match.
However, it was difficult to conclude that the heat of the Ulsan-Jeonbuk match that day was simply the aftermath of the World Cup in Qatar. Most of them were ardent K-League fans who came to watch the match between rivals Ulsan and Jeonbuk, who fiercely competed for the league championship until the end of last season. Fans in the stands wore mufflers wearing uniforms with the names of the players they supported, not national team stars.
This Hyundai Derby adds to the story with the transfer of Jun Amano (Jeonbuk). Amano, who contributed greatly to Ulsan’s championship last year, wore the ‘opponent’ Jeonbuk uniform ahead of the new season. During this process, Ulsan coach Hong Myung-bo openly criticized Amano for breaking his promise to accompany them, and the match between Jeonbuk and Ulsan became the ‘Amano Derby’. 토토사이트
Ulsan fans expressed their sadness by preparing a hanging hanging with the words ‘Liar Amano’ written in Japanese. Whenever Amano caught the ball, Munsu Soccer Stadium was full of boos. Amano didn’t care. 10 minutes after the start of the game, he helped Song Min-gyu score with an accurate pass from outside the penalty box. Although Amano played an active part for 59 minutes, he was by far the protagonist of the match.
The top-notch performance of the players from both teams also contributed to the heat. In the first half, Jeonbuk, who brought out the forward pressure card, laughed. However, Ulsan, who tied the score with Um Won-sang’s goal in the 43rd minute of the first half, gained momentum in the second half.
Fans responded with enthusiastic cheering. There were frequent battles of nerves that day, and whenever the teams collided, the atmosphere was heightened. In particular, after the game, Ulsan supporters enjoyed the victory by singing ‘Goodbye’ to Jeonbuk. Jeonbuk comforted the players who had greeted them and promised the following.