“I’m not going to be a ‘shiny’ player.”
Seongnam defender Kim Ji-soo (19), whom we recently met at the team clubhouse, made this promise as he pictured his future. Kim Ji-soo, who says he learns from watching videos of “world-class” defenders such as Kim Min-jae (27, Naples), Mats Hummels (35, Dortmund), and Sergio Ramos (37, Paris Saint-Germain), whenever he has a chance, said, “Min-jae hyung’s overwhelming speed. , Hummels’ positioning, Ramos’ quick judgment, etc. I want to become a player who has the strengths of good defenders.”
Kim Ji-soo made his professional soccer debut against Suwon on May 14 last year when he was a senior at Poongsaeng High School. In the meantime, he left a record for the youngest (17 years, 4 months, 20 days) in K-League 1 history. It was thanks to the ‘semi-professional contract’ system introduced by the Korea Professional Football Federation in 2018 to allow youth team players aged 16 or older to participate in official matches. In the history of the Seongnam club, Kim Ji-soo was the first to sign a semi-professional contract. Kim Ji-soo said, “I became a professional player and bought my mother a Rolex watch, and the day I saw her moist eyes, I thought I was really good at playing soccer.”
Kim Ji-soo, who participated in a total of 19 games last year, was selected as a ‘K League All-Star’ and had the experience of facing Tottenham (England) players. Coach Kim Sang-sik (Jeonbuk), who took the K-League All-Star baton, evaluated, “When I see Kim Ji-soo, I think of Kim Min-jae.” Coach Kim, who played as a defensive midfielder and defender as a player, has experience coaching Kim Min-jae as a Jeonbuk coach. Kim Ji-soo (192cm) is said to be tall like Kim Min-jae (190cm) and knows how to cover a wide range with quick feet.
Even in the under-20 (U-20) national team, Kim Ji-soo is indispensable. Kim Ji-soo participated in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-20 Asian Cup last month and contributed to Korea finishing in third place. In 3 games where Kim Ji-soo started, including the semi-final against home team Uzbekistan, Korea recorded no goals. Kim Ji-soo, who was the youngest member of the Korean national team for this tournament, said, “Last year’s professional experience seems to have helped me a lot. When he made a mistake, he tried not to repeat it, erasing the shortcomings one by one. He also learned a lot through this tournament where the national team competed.”
Even ‘Big League’ is paying attention to Kim Ji-soo. Last winter, Bayern Munich (Germany) sent an official letter to Seongnam with the content that ‘our club is interested in Kim Ji-soo’, and during this U-20 Asian Cup, multiple English Premier League (EPL) clubs dispatched scouts to Kim Ji-soo. Observed. An official from Seongnam said, “If a reasonable proposal comes, the team will also try to help Kim Ji-soo advance overseas.”
For Kim Ji-soo,메이저놀이터 team performance is still more important than going abroad. He said, “I’m happy just imagining the spectators filling the stadium on the world’s best stage calling out names and cheering for me,” he said. . Seongnam was relegated to K-League 2 last year after finishing at the bottom (12th) of K-League 1.
Kim Ji-soo, due to preparations for the U-20 Asian Cup, failed to properly participate in the training of his team, which was newly started under coach Lee Ki-hyung during the off-season, and recorded his first start in Jeonnam on the 8th, which was the 6th round. As of the 17th, Seongnam is in 6th place with 11 points. Seongnam must finish the season in at least 5th place in order to go up to the K-League 1 again.