Bae Joon-ho signs four-year deal with Stoke…”It’s a dream come true”

August 31, 2023 | by

Bae Jun-ho, 20, who emerged as one of the top prospects in Korean soccer this summer, has joined Stoke City of the English Championship (second division).

“The club is delighted to announce the signing of midfielder Bae Jun-ho, who played for Daejeon Hana Citizens in the K League,” Stoke said on its official website on July 31 (KST).

Bae has signed a four-year contract with Stoke and will join the team in training immediately. The transfer fee was not disclosed, but it is reported to be in the region of €2 million (approximately $2.8 billion).

The club said of Bae: “He helped the South Korea U-20 team reach the quarterfinals at the FIFA U-20 World Cup 2023 in June. He appeared in six matches and scored a goal against Ecuador to lead the team to victory.” “The 20-year-old joined Daejeon in January 2022 and made 10 appearances as the club won its first promotion in seven years. This season, he has made 17 league appearances and scored goals against Daegu FC and FC Seoul.”

“Bae Joon-ho is an up-and-coming talent who caught the eye of our scouting team at the U-20 World Cup in Argentina this summer,” said Stoke Technical Director Ricky Martin. “We’ve been looking at players from outside the UK and Europe and have been following his performances in the K League this season, and he’s continued to show his technical ability and performances to suit our team.

“There will obviously be an adjustment phase for him, but we are excited about his potential. We believe he will continue to improve as he gets used to our organization and the English game.”

On the same day, Daejeon Hana Citizens also announced the news of Bae Jun-ho’s transfer in a press release. Recently, Daejeon showed him a beautiful farewell by seeing him off on his way out of the country. The fans also presented him with a specially made ticket to signify that he should come back to Daejeon if he returns in the future.

“I’ve always wanted to have the opportunity to play for England, and this is a dream come true,” Bae told Stoke. “This is just the beginning, and I hope to have a long and successful career at Stoke. Joining England will require me to adapt on and off the pitch, but I am determined to settle in as quickly as possible and contribute to the team.”

Bae Joon-ho has been one of the most talked about players this summer. Already touted as a big name prospect since 2022, Bae Jun-ho gained even more attention at the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup, where he played as a key midfielder for Kim Eun-jong-ho. Most notably, he started against Ecuador in the Round of 16, scoring a goal and adding an assist as Korea advanced to the quarterfinals.

Following his stellar performance at the tournament, FIFA wrote, “Bae is creative and unpredictable in his play,” ahead of the quarterfinal match against Italy. Even Carmine Nunziata, the coach of the Italian U-20 team that defeated Kim Eun-jong-ho, said that “No. 10 (Bae) was particularly good.”

He’s only been playing for two years, but he’s already been linked with a move to Europe. At a media day for the Daejeon U-20 national team, the player himself said, “Nothing is finalized right now,” but he did not hide his ambition to challenge as soon as possible.

Bae Joon-ho’s presence has not gone unnoticed by overseas coaches. In July, Bae Joon-ho joined Team K-League during the break and started the first leg of the Coupang Play Series against Atletico Madrid (Spain), where he faced off against some of Europe’s top players. At the time, Bae Joon-ho played the first half before being subbed off, but after the game, Atletico coach Diego Simeone said, “I was impressed with the way No. 33 (Bae Joon-ho) played between our defensive lines in the first half.” Bae Joon-ho has a lot of talent. There’s no hiding the talent. 바카라

Having proven his talent early on, Bae has now set his sights on the English game. Stoke finished 19th in the English Premier League (EPL) in the 2017-18 season and were relegated, and have been in the second tier ever since. They finished 16th last season. This season has also been a mixed bag, with two wins and two losses in the first four league games, and it will be interesting to see if Bae can integrate into the team after a quick transition. Stoke will have an A-match break before hosting Preston North End in the fifth round of the 2023-24 Championship on February 2.


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