The ‘big freshmen’ who heated up the winter transfer market

It’s been a wild ride. The ‘big freshmen’ who heated up the winter transfer market have been flying high from the first edition.

Last weekend, K League 1 and 2 kicked off. This year was also a box office hit. A whopping 94,460 people attended the six games of the first round of the K League 1. This is the third highest opening round attendance in the history of the K League 1, behind only the 2023 season’s 101,632 and the 2017 season’s 98,353. In K League 2, Suwon Samsung set a new K League 2 single-game attendance record with 14,196 fans.

Amidst the intensity of every match, new faces stood out, including Lee Soon-min, Kwon Kyung-won, Choi Kyung-rok, and Osmar, all of whom were “star transfers” 안전놀이터 who moved to the league last year after garnering a lot of attention.

Lee Soon-min was the hottest signing last winter.

Named the best midfielder in the K League 1 last season after leading Gwangju FC’s breakout season, Lee was courted by big clubs such as Ulsan HD, Jeonbuk Hyundai, and FC Seoul. Daejeon Hana Citizens, who were looking for a specialized defensive midfielder, offered a huge transfer fee and salary for Lee. There was talk of “overpaying,” but Lee changed all that after just one game, the opening match against Jeonbuk (1-1 draw). Wearing the captain’s armband in place of Cho Yoo-min, who left for the Middle East, Lee took Daejeon’s midfield to the next level, showing off his unique mobility, defense, and dominance. “It’s as expected,” said coach Lee Min-sung.

Kwon Kyung-won, a defender who was torn between going overseas and returning to the K League, has also taken his game to another level in a Suwon FC jersey. A surprise late-season signing, Kwon quickly transformed a Suwon FC defense that conceded a whopping 76 goals last season. His coordination in the opening match against Incheon United (1-0 Suwon FC win) was outstanding and he kept a clean sheet from the first match. Coach Kim Eun-joong gave him a thumbs-up, saying he was “on a different level.”

Choi Kyung-rok, who came to the K League after 10 years in Germany, also made a strong impression from the first game.

He started the game against FC Seoul (2-0) and led Gwangju’s attack with his sensational play. As if he’d been playing for Gwangju before, he seemed to have settled into Lee Jung-hyo’s style of soccer. His defensive contributions also stood out. “I think he’s definitely a player who gives us a sense of stability. If he manages well and stays injury-free, he will be a great addition to the team,” Lee said. In addition, Hwang Seok-ho and Kim Min-woo, who came to the K League this winter in an Ulsan jersey, also had good performances.

In the K League 2, Osmar stood out. The self-proclaimed “FC Seoul legend” returned to the K League after parting ways with Seoul to play for another Seoul team, Eland. Coach Kim Do-gyun decided to go with a three-back system centered around Osmar in his promotion bid, 카지노사이트 추천 and Osmar responded with a breakthrough performance from the opening match against Busan I-Park (3-0 I-Land win). In addition to scoring the game-winning goal in the first half, his steady defense and excellent reading of the game made it easy for the promotion-challenged side.

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