“I don’t think there’s any doubt in terms of skills. There’s a break period, so you have to wait and give yourself time to build up. Of course, it’s hard to live up to 100 percent because of the age and the break period, but I think we can show enough in the K-League if we just find the flow.”
FC Seoul’s captain Ki Sung-yueng, who played against Jesse Lingard in the Premier League, stressed that there is no doubt about Lingard’s skills and that fans need time.
The all-time big name came to the K-League. Jesse Lingard, who played for Manchester United and England, has concluded the contract with FC Seoul. FC Seoul officially announced the recruitment of Lingard on the 8th, saying, “FC Seoul has recruited Jesse Lingard, a former English national team striker.”
Lingard needs no explanation. He scored 29 goals and 14 assists in 182 matches in the English Premier League, one of the best leagues in the world, through Manchester United, West Ham United and Nottingham Forest. With multi-player resources capable of playing both offensive midfielders and wing forwards, Lingard was selected to the England national team in 2016 and made his A-match debut. Notably, he scored one goal and two assists at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, leading England to the semifinals.
Expectations are high. Although he trained alone for about eight months without a member of his team, Lingard was in good physical condition as checked by the Seoul scout team. Lingard immediately headed to Kagoshima, Japan, where he was training for the secondary battery in Seoul, and appeared in a practice match. He was adapting quickly by playing a Lunar New Year game with his Seoul teammates including Ki Sung-yueng.
Now, Seoul has two players from Premier League teams thanks to Lingard’s joining. Lingard and Ki Sung-yueng are the stars. Ki started his professional career in Seoul and moved to Celtic in 2010 to play overseas. He joined the PL by wearing a Swansea uniform ahead of the 2012-13 season.
Since then, Ki has played for Swansea, Sunderland (rental) and Newcastle United, scoring 15 goals and nine assists in 187 matches in the PL. Ki, who ended his career in England after the 2019-20 season, stayed in Mallorca (Spain) for a while and is currently playing for his hometown in Seoul.
Originally, Ki thought seriously about continuing his career after the end of last season. However, he signed a contract with Seoul as a result, and was named the first captain under Kim Ki-dong, making him a key player again this season. In addition, Kim Ki-dong said to Ki, “Please take care of Lingard,” and asked him to help Lingard adjust.
When asked about Ki at a joining press conference, Lingard said, “He is a very good player. I met him once when he was playing for Swansea. Now that we are playing in Seoul together, I hope that there will be a good synergy effect. Ki is also a legend in Seoul.”
Ki expressed his expectation, too. “I think there is no doubt about his ability. There is a period of rest, so we need to give him time to wait and build up his body. It depends on Lingard’s will. If he fully concentrates on soccer, he will be able to help his team quickly. It is a huge plus factor for his team. He tries to help Lingard adjust quickly and boost his condition. I hope the fans will wait for him, too. I hope he will have some time to lower his expectations and wait until his condition fully improves,” he said, stressing that Lingard needs time before he adjusts to the K-League. 여우알바
“We had a showdown when we were Swansea. As he had speed and good individual skills, he was quite threatening when he was in good condition. When he was in good condition, he was a key player in the English national team as well. I think that’s what the fans expect from him. Of course, it will be difficult to meet the expectations 100 percent due to his age and lack of time due to rest, but I think we can show enough in the K-League if we keep up with the flow,” he said, expressing expectations.