Among the players who are heating up the early stages of the 2023 K-League, there is a morning star in her early 20s.
The main character is Go Yeong-joon (22), a young gun from the Pohang Steelers. Debuting in 2020, he is tied for 3rd in scoring with 4 goals after playing just 9 games this year. Although his main job is an attacking midfielder, he is leading the team’s only undefeated streak with his sharp scoring instinct. On the 22nd, in the K-League 1 leader Ulsan Hyundai and the East Coast Derby, he scored multiple goals and received praise.
Koh Young-joon, whom we met at the Pohang clubhouse on the 26th, said, “I want to get a chance to advance to a bigger stage through my performance this year.”
The big stage Koh Young-jun is talking about is the Asian Games held in Hangzhou, China in September. Coach Hwang Seon-hong 크크크벳(55) commanded the baton, and if he wins a gold medal in this event, he can also receive military service benefits. The possibility of winning is higher than ever as it is a competition in which the ‘golden generation’, which was verified at the Poland Under-20 (U-20) World Cup four years ago, participates intact. At the time, the Golden Ball winner Lee Kang-in (22, Mallorca), Eom Won-sang (24, Ulsan), Ko Jae-hyeon (24, Daegu), and other runner-up members born in 1999 are the main pillars.
Ko Young-joon said, “It won’t be easy to compete with older brothers who are two years older, but it’s not a competition that I can’t go to.” In fact, Ko Young-joon was called by former soccer team coach Paulo Bento last year and even accumulated his A-match experience.
Ko Young-jun was born in 2001 and seems to be concerned about the title issue with Lee Kang-in, who is the same age but has an earlier birthday. His friendship with the national team once last year is all. He said, “Honestly, if you are good at soccer, you are my brother, so I have thoughts of calling you my brother. He is in the same position, but his skills are far ahead of me.”
Koh Young-joon, who humbles himself to the utmost, is evaluated as a player who grows as he plays games. This year, the first touch, which was a weakness, became soft like ‘soft tofu’, and even the shooting, which was a strength, came to life.
Ko Young-joon said, “The Asian Games are a stage where I can show myself to the world,” and said, “If the opportunity comes, I want to advance to the big stage.”
However, before leaving for the big stage, Koh Young-joon wants to present a championship cup to his former team, Pohang. I have clear memories of watching Pohang win two gold medals (K League 1 FA Cup) as a member of Pohang Jecheol Elementary School in 2013, exactly 10 years ago. Go Yeong-jun, who joined Pohang through Pocheol Middle School and Pocheol High School, said, “This year, our team is undefeated in 9 matches (5 wins, 4 draws).