About 20 days before the opening of the 2023 professional football K League 1, teams related to Gyeonggi and Incheon are experiencing mixed feelings over the compulsory participation of players under the age of 20 (U22).
The U22 compulsory participation system, introduced in 2013 to promote the development of youth players, allows at least one U22 player to start from 2021 and replaces up to five players per team if two or more players are included in the full roster (18 players). After the introduction of the rule, U22 became the club’s competitive advantage.
Among the teams related to Gyeong-In, Suwon Samsung is the team that uses the U22 system the best. It is the cradle of U22 prospects, including national team member Kwon Chang-hoon (Sangmu) and recently Oh Hyun-gyu (Celtic). However, I am worried that the existing resources are leaving en masse ahead of this season. Kim Sang-joon was rented to Busan due to Oh Hyun-gyu’s transfer and Kang Hyeon-mook’s enlistment as a managing director. Jeon Jin-woo, who has been doing well so far, is also 23 years old.
In this regard, an official from Suwon said, “There is a departure from existing resources, but there are many promising players among new players.” Jang Seok-hwan from Bayern Munich is expected to be the backup for Ki-je Lee. The resources are sufficient,” he explained. 안전놀이터
Suwon FC also has U22 resource bleeding. Lee Ki-hyeok was traded for Yun Bit-garam and moved to Jeju, and Kang Jun-mo, who studied abroad in Germany, also moved to the K-League 2 Ansan Greeners. Fortunately, Jang Jae-woong and Jung Jae-yoon, who joined last year, remained, so they avoided the worst, but they are suffering from the U22 composition.
An official from Suwon FC said, “It is true that we lack a youth system compared to other clubs. Currently, we are supplementing every year mainly with players who have been active in college,” he said. “But last year, about 8 young resources, including rookies, were secured. I am putting my hopes on Lee Dae-gwang, Lee Hyun-yong, and Choi Chi-woong.”
On the other hand, Incheon, which laughed at the performance of U22 resources last season, is also okay this year. Min-seok Kim from Daegeon High School in Incheon is part of the 2001 duo, including Min Kyung-hyeon, who grew up as a starter, and Hong Si-hoo, who won the Young Player Award last October. If an excellent rookie joins the team, it could be the best scenario.
Incheon has to watch the 7 newcomers a little longer, but the club officials say that they are putting their hopes on Chun Seong-hun, a 190 cm tall striker who has experienced the German stage.