‘I cried when the goal was canceled’ Yoo Kang-hyun finally scores his K League 1 debut goal…”I’m just happy, thank you for my name, Yeon-ho”

September 24, 2023 | by

Daejeon Hana Citizen striker Yoo Kang-hyun, who was reduced to tears when his goal was disallowed two months ago, delighted fans with a season-ending goal at a crucial moment.

Daejeon ended a four-match winless streak with a 3-1 victory over Suwon Samsung in the 31st round of the Hana OneQ K League 1 2023 at Daejeon World Cup Stadium on Wednesday, thanks to a goal from Kim In-gyun, a brace from Yoo Kang-hyun and a Thiago wedge.

In front of a crowd of 14,810 at the stadium, Daejeon got off to a great start, scoring two goals in the first half alone. In the 14th minute, left back Seo Young-jae’s shot from inside the penalty box was saved by the goalkeeper, and Kim In-gyun pounced on the second ball to score his seventh goal of the league.

In the 34th minute, Yoo Kang-hyun extended the lead when he received a sharp pass from defender Cho Yoo-min and calmly scored after beating the goalkeeper. The goal marked Yoo’s debut in the K League 1 and his first goal of the season after 20 league games.

Daejeon goalkeeper Lee Chang-geun also made a great save to secure the win for his team. In the first half, Suwon was awarded a penalty kick in stoppage time and Daejeon was threatened with a goal, but Lee Chang-geun read the direction of Ahn Byung-joon’s shot correctly to keep the game scoreless.

In the second half, Daejeon managed to pull a goal back in the 12th minute through Suwon’s key midfielder Kazuki, but a handball foul on Suwon defender Park Dae-won in stoppage time earned a penalty kick. Thiago, who replaced Yoo Kang-hyun in the second half, neatly converted the spot kick to seal the win.

Thiago also scored his 14th league goal on the penalty kick, igniting the competition for the top scorer in the K League 1. With his goal against Suwon, Thiago is now tied with Lee In-gyu (Ulsan Hyundai) for the league lead with 14 goals.

With the 3-1 win over Suwon, Daejeon added three more points to their tally, taking them to 41 points (10 wins, 11 draws, and 10 losses). They are still in eighth place in the league, but with sixth-place Jeonbuk Hyundai on 43 points (12 wins, 7 draws, 11 losses), they still have a shot at the Final A (top flight). Suwon, on the other hand, failed to accumulate points and remained in 12th (bottom) place in the league with 22 points (5 wins, 7 draws, 19 losses).

“It was a very important game and the players’ will to win was strong, so I’m glad we were able to win in front of so many fans,” said Yoo Kang-hyun, who attended the press conference as Suhun after the game.

“Despite the fact that I hadn’t scored for a long time, the coach, fans, and teammates had been waiting and supporting me, so I wanted to repay them,” he said, adding, “I couldn’t be happier that I not only scored a goal but also helped the team win.”

Speaking about the circumstances of his goal, Yoo Kang-hyun said, “First of all, the pass from (Cho) Yoo-min was very good, and the goalkeeper came out with speed, so it was rather easy to beat him. The play came out automatically rather than thinking about it,” he said, giving credit to his teammate for the good pass 토토사이트.

Yoo finished last season as the top scorer in the K League 2 with 19 goals for Chungnam Asan. Promoted to the first division at the end of the season, Daejeon immediately signed him, and he made his K League 1 debut for the first time in his professional career, but after a long scoring drought, he scored his K League 1 debut goal at a crucial moment to break the team’s four-game winless streak.

Daejeon fans and teammates celebrated Yoo Kang-hyun’s goal with all their hearts, as he had rattled the net against Jeonbuk Hyundai in the 22nd round of the league in July, only to have the goal disallowed due to an offside decision by the video assistant referee (VAR), leaving him in tears after the game ended in a 2-2 draw.

When Yoo finally scored his first goal of the season against Suwon, he ran to the stands to perform a ceremony and share his joy with his teammates. After the game, the Daejeon fans chanted his name in unison.

In response to the fans’ chants, Yoo said, “I was in tears against Jeonbuk, but now I’m just happy. I wasn’t the only one who scored a goal, so thank you for calling my name,” he said, thanking the fans.

When asked why he blew kisses to the crowd, he said, “My girlfriend and her parents came. They supported me a lot when I was struggling, so I was able to get through it mentally.”

“As much as I waited for the goal, they waited for it too, so I think they were more happy than I was,” she said, “As a striker, I couldn’t erase the memory of not scoring, but (coach Lee Min-sung) told me to focus on the game and do it naturally, so I was able to focus on the game more calmly.”

After scoring the goal of the season, Yoo Kang-hyun will now travel to Gangwon FC for the 32nd round of the league on the 1st. With momentum on his side, it will be interesting to see if Yoo can follow up his goal against Suwon with another against Gangwon to bring home three points and take a step closer to the coveted top split.

“There were more games where I came on as a substitute than a starter, and I learned a lot,” said Yoo, who is looking forward to the rest of the season. “We can win if we can get the team into a good flow after playing a few minutes, and if I score a goal like I did today, it will be even better.”


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