Ki Sung-yueng

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Ki Sung-yueng
기성용
Ki Sung-Yueng from acrofan.jpg
Personal information
Full name Ki Sung-yueng[1]
Date of birth (1989-01-24) 24 January 1989 (age 25)
Place of birth Gwangju, South Korea
Height 1.87 m (6 ft 1 12 in)[2]
Playing position Central Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Swansea City
Number 17
Youth career
2001–2005 John Paul College
2005 Kumho High School
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2006–2009 FC Seoul 64 (7)
2009–2012 Celtic 66 (9)
2012– Swansea City 30 (0)
2013–2014 Sunderland (loan) 27 (3)
National team
2005–2006 South Korea U-17 6 (3)
2006–2007 South Korea U-20 16 (2)
2007–2012 South Korea U-23 21 (1)
2008– South Korea 60 (5)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 12 April 2014.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 24 June 2014
Ki Sung-yueng
Hangul 기성용
Hanja 奇誠庸[3]
Revised Romanization Gi Seong-yong
McCune–Reischauer Ki Sŏng'yong
This is a Korean name; the family name is Ki.

Ki Sung-yueng (Korean: 기성용, Korean pronunciation: [ki sʰʌŋjoŋ]; born 24 January 1989) is a South Korean professional footballer who currently plays as a central midfielder for Premier League club Swansea City, and the South Korea national team.

Ki is known for his vision, technique, long-range passing and shooting, along with his good set-pieces.

Early life[edit]

In 2001, Ki went to Brisbane, Australia to study at John Paul College in Brisbane under the BSP (Brain Soccer Program) overseen by Jeff Hopkins.[4] His father saw the move as an opportunity for Ki to play football and learn English at the same time. Ki played his youth football for the school team and was part of the team that won the Bill Turner Cup, the national inter-school U-15 soccer competition, in 2004. Ki received offers in 2005 from Korean club FC Seoul and also A-League club Brisbane Roar (then Queensland Roar), but decided to move back to South Korea to continue his career. Since then, Ki has been a fluent English speaker. He went by his English name David in Australia.[5]

Club career[edit]

FC Seoul[edit]

Ki returned to Korea and joined FC Seoul where he played alongside national teammate Lee Chung-Yong. He was a Substitute in the last match of the 2006 League Cup,[6] but could not play. Under Şenol Güneş, he made his senior debut in 2007.[7]

During the 2008 season, Ki reinforced his position as a key player of FC Seoul. On 29 October, Ki scored the winning goal against Seoul's biggest rival Suwon Samsung Bluewings in 92nd minute. Ki performed a "Kangaroo Ceremony", which he claims to be an imitation of Emmanuel Adebayor's ceremony, but Suwon fans have argued that this was imitation of 'chicken', which is what many Seoul fans call Suwon.[7] He led the team to an unprecedented K League runners-up position with 4 goals and 1 assist in 21 appearances.

In FC Seoul's first K League match of the 2009 season, Ki scored one goal in the 6–1 drubbing of Chunnam Dragons. There was increasing speculation regarding a big move abroad with suitors including PSV Eindhoven, Hamburg SV and Porto among others.[7][8]

Celtic[edit]

On 25 August 2009, it was revealed that contact between Celtic and FC Seoul had occurred regarding the possibility of Ki's transfer to the Parkhead club. However, the player's agent stated that an immediate move would be unlikely given FC Seoul's success in the league and the Asian Champions League. Three days later, Celtic clinched a £2.1m transfer for Ki.[7] He linked up with the Parkhead side in the January transfer window at the end of the K-League season. The signing was confirmed on 13 December 2009 after Ki passed a medical and secured a work permit. Ki reportedly turned down an offer from English Premier League club Portsmouth. He took the number 18 with "Ki" on his shirt. He made his debut for Celtic in a 1–1 draw against Falkirk at Celtic Park on 16 January 2010, winning the Man of the Match award from the official Celtic website.[9][10][11][12][13][14] He played a further four games for Celtic that season, but struggled to make much impact in what was a period of upheaval for the club.

Ki Sung-Yueng playing for Celtic in 2010

Ki barely played for Celtic in the first month of season 2010–11, but came off the bench to score his first competitive goal for Celtic on 22 August 2010 with a shot from 25 yards in a 4–0 victory against St. Mirren in the Scottish Premier League (SPL).[15] By the end of October he had become a first team regular and was voted the SPL Young Player of the Month for October 2010.[16][17] However, on 30 October 2010, Ki found himself the recipient of apparent racist abuse during a league match away at St Johnstone. A section of the St Johnstone support were heard making barking noises – 'woofing' – at Ki as he took a corner kick. Chants of "Who ate all the dogs?" were also heard from the home fans throughout the game.[18]

Ki scored his second goal of the season in a 2–2 draw with Inverness Thistle at Celtic Park.[19] On 26 December 2010, Ki scored against St Johnstone in a 2–0 victory in the SPL,[20] in what was his last game for Celtic before travelling to Qatar to play for South Korea in the 2011 AFC Asian Cup during January.[21] On coming back to Scotland in February, Ki returned to the Celtic first team for the 2–2 draw against Rangers in a Scottish Cup tie at Ibrox. Celtic played a significant part of the game with only ten men after Fraser Forster was sent off, but the midfield including Ki won praise for the manner in which they dominated the game in the second half.[22] Ki also played in the replay at Celtic Park, an ill-tempered match which Celtic won 1–0.[23] On 21 May 2011, Ki scored the first goal of Celtic's Scottish Cup Final win against Motherwell with a left-footed strike from around 35 yards. He also won the official Man of the Match award.[24][25]

Ki started the 2011–12 campaign in Celtic's opening game against Hibernian in the SPL. Scoring the second goal in a 2–0 victory, a 25-yard left foot strike into the right hand bottom corner and also won the Man of the Match award from the official Celtic website. He impressed Celtic manager Neil Lennon so much in the Hibernian game that he said:[26]

He's a very important player to us. I rate him very highly. He can go on to be anything he wants to be," Lennon told The Telegraph. "We think he is a class player and we're glad he's here." He added: “Ki has been very consistent over the past 18 months. He's developing nicely into a class player. "He had good presence and good composure on the ball. He has a goal or two in him and his passing range is excellent."

Ki then went on to score another goal in the Scottish Premier League against Dundee United at Celtic Park, a strike into the top left hand corner from the edge of the box. On 15 August 2011 it was reported that Premier League sides Blackburn Rovers, Tottenham Hotspur and several clubs from the Russian Premier League were interested in signing Ki. Celtic the next day issued a hands off warning to the interested clubs, saying that it would take a bid of significant proportions for Celtic to allow the increasingly important midfielder to leave the club.[27] On 10 September 2011, Ki put Motherwell to the sword yet again, this time in the Scottish Premier League with a superb strike from outside the box with his right foot. Celtic went on to win the game 4–0. On 29 September, he started in Celtic's 1–1 draw with Italian side Udinese, scoring on a penalty after 3 minutes.[28] On 18 December 2011, he scored the second goal of the game as Celtic beat St Johnstone 2–0 at McDiarmid Park in the Scottish Premier League. Over the course of the 2011–2012 campaign, Ki scored 7 goals and had 6 assists, playing a key role in helping Celtic win the Scottish title.[29] Ki's talent and performance at Celtic and national team drew the interest of teams such QPR, Liverpool, Aston Villa, Deportivo La Coruña, Rubin Kazan, and several Bundesliga clubs.[30][31]

Swansea City[edit]

On 24 August 2012, Ki transferred to Swansea City for around £6 million on a three-year deal, which was Swansea's record transfer fee until it was broken by Wilfried Bony.[32] He made his debut for the Swans in a 3–1 victory against Barnsley in the second round of the League Cup at Liberty Stadium on 28 August 2012. Wearing a No. 24 jersey, Ki started as a central midfielder and was substituted 76 minutes into the game.[33]

Ki enjoyed a promising debut season in the Premier League. Although he failed to replicate the scoring form he displayed at Celtic,[34] his passing style drew praise from supporters and critics,[35] and he finished the season with 38 appearances in all competitions. On 24 February 2013, Swansea City competed in the final of the League Cup.[36] Ki played for over an hour in the final in an unfamiliar central defensive role.[36][37] The tactical switch proved to be a success, as Swansea ran out comfortable 5–0 winners against Bradford City[36] as Ki won his first trophy with the Welsh club.[37]

Sunderland[edit]

On 31 August 2013, Ki joined Sunderland on a season-long loan with a mid-season re-call option.[38] He scored his first goal for Sunderland on 17 December 2013 in a 2–1 League Cup quarter-final win over Chelsea, cutting inside Ashley Cole then beating goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer with a low shot in the 119th minute for the winning goal.[39][40] On 26 December, he scored his second for Sunderland in a 1–0 away win over Everton. Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard played a short pass to Leon Osman who was robbed of the ball by Ki. Howard brought Ki down and was sent off, and Ki converted the penalty kick himself to give the Black Cats a vital win. It was Ki's first league goal.[41][42] Ki's third goal for Sunderland came in a 4–1 away win at Fulham, from a well worked set piece by Adam Johnson.[43]

On 22 January 2014, Ki reached his second consecutive League Cup Final, albeit with a different club, as he helped Sunderland defeat Manchester United 2–1 on penalty kicks after the two-legged semi-final had finished level on aggregate; Ki and Marcos Alonso scoring Sunderland's penalties.[44] Ki played for Sunderland against Manchester City in the League Cup Final on 2 March 2014, but despite leading 1–0 at half-time they were overpowered by City in the second half, eventually losing 3–1 to the Manchester side.[45]

Sunderland spent most of the Premier League season in the relegation zone,[46] but Ki played his part in their recovery, even playing on despite suffering tendonitis in his knee for several months.[47] He eventually succumbed to the injury, and played his last club game of the season on 10 April.[47] Sunderland succeeded in avoiding relegation, and eventually finished 14th.[46]

International career[edit]

On the international stage, Ki has played in the 2007 U-20 World Cup and for the South Korea national team as well as the South Korea U-23 team.[48]

On 7 June 2008, he made his international debut in a 2010 World Cup qualification match against Jordan.[48]

On 1 June 2010 Ki was picked in the 23-man South Korea world cup squad.[49] On 12 June Ki played in South Korea's first game of the 2010 World Cup against Greece.[50] Ki played a part in all 3 group games and assisted twice in 2 different matches against Greece and Nigeria which helped him and his country get through to the knock-out stages of the competition.[50]

On 20 December 2011, Ki (along with Ji So-yun of Kobe INAC Japan) was awarded the South Korean Player of the Year award. The decision was announced by the Korean Football Association (KFA) based on his international and club performance in the Scottish Premier League.[51]

In the London 2012 Olympics, he scored the fifth and vital penalty for South Korea in their quarter-final match against Great Britain, allowing South Korea to progress to the semi-finals.[52] South Korea lost 3–0 to Brazil in the semi-final,[53] but defeated Japan 2–0 in the third-place play-off to win the Bronze medal.[54]

Ki was selected for the South Korea squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.[55] He played in all three games as Korea were eliminated at the group stage after one draw and two defeats.[56][57]

Controversies[edit]

On 19 November 2007, Ki wrote "If you are frustrated, why don't you go out and play?" on his Cyworld page in response to the criticism by Korean fans after the South Korea U-23 team's goalless draw against Uzbekistan. Ki deleted his statement after being heavily condemned for his careless behaviour.[58]

On 25 January 2011, during the 2011 AFC Asian Cup semi-final match between Japan and South Korea, Ki scored the opening goal through a penalty kick.[59] Ki created a controversy by celebrating his goal by making a monkey face and scratching his cheek in front of a pitch-side camera in an allegedly racist slur at Japanese people.[60] Ki initially defended his goal celebration through a Twitter post claiming that he was annoyed at having seen a Rising Sun Flag in the stadium.[61] Ki then claimed that the celebration was a reference to alleged racist abuse he had received during Scottish Premier League games from opposition fans, but the chief executive of Show Racism the Red Card expressed scepticism about this.[61] Asian Cup tournament director Tokuaki Suzuki said that no action will be taken on part of the AFC and that FIFA has not contacted the AFC regarding the matter.[60]

In the summer of 2013, it was widely reported that Ki had previously insulted then South Korea national team manager Choi Kang-Hee on his Facebook page before and after the match against Kuwait in February 2012.[62] Ki wrote, "Now everyone should have realized the value of the players who play overseas. [He] should have left us alone, otherwise, [he] will be hurt."[63] Ki later apologized for his "mischievous and inappropriate remarks" and his father visited the KFA to apologize as well.[64]

Club statistics[edit]

As of 18 July 2014[65][66]
Club Season League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
FC Seoul
2006 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2007 16 0 3 0 6 0 25 0
2008 21 4 1 0 6 0 28 4
2009 27 3 1 0 4 1 8 1 40 5
Total 64 7 5 0 16 1 8 1 93 9
Celtic
2009–10 10 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 10 0
2010–11 26 3 4 1 3 0 2 0 35 4
2011–12 30 6 2 0 3 0 7 1 42 7
Total 66 9 6 1 6 0 9 1 87 11
Swansea City
2012–13 29 0 2 0 7 0 38 0
2013–14 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 3 0
2014–15 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 30 0 2 0 7 0 2 0 41 0
Sunderland (loan)
2013–14 27 3 1 0 6 1 34 4
Total 27 3 1 0 6 1 34 4
Career Total 187 19 14 1 35 2 19 2 255 24

Honours[edit]

FC Seoul

Celtic

Swansea City A.F.C

Sunderland A.F.C

International[edit]

South Korea U23

Individual[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Ki confirmed in March 2013 that he was dating actress Han Hye-jin, and announced their engagement in May 2013.[69][70][71][72] The couple filed their marriage registration on June 25, 2013,[73] and wed on July 1 at the Intercontinental Hotel Seoul.[74][75][76] Both are devout Christians.[77]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Barclays Premier League Squad Numbers 2013/14". Premier League. 16 August 2013. Retrieved 2 February 2014. 
  2. ^ "Player Profile Sung-Yueng Ki". swanseacity.net (Swansea City A.F.C.). Retrieved 6 October 2012. 
  3. ^ "월드컵 허정무호 젊은 '쌍룡', 이란 격파 선봉에" (in Korean). NEWSIS. 20 January 2009. 
  4. ^ "세대 축구선수들의 성공요인은?" (in Korean). Sportsseoul. 12 October 2009. 
  5. ^ Ki Sung Yeung SBS
  6. ^ K-League Official Match Report at K-League Website (Korean)
  7. ^ a b c d http://sites.duke.edu/wcwp/world-cup-2014/players-to-watch-at-the-2014-world-cup/asian-football-confederation/republic-of-korea-sung-yong-ki/
  8. ^ "FOX '기성용, 포르투·함부르크 갈 수도'" (in Korean). Goal.com. 11 June 2009. 
  9. ^ "기성용 에이전트, 셀틱과 첫 협상" (in Korean). Naver. 26 August 2009. 
  10. ^ "기성용, 스코틀랜드 `셀틱FC` 이적" (in Korean). Hankyung. 29 August 2009. 
  11. ^ "Ki clinches four-year Celtic deal". BBC Sport. 13 December 2009. 
  12. ^ "Exclusive – Ki Sung-yong: I rejected Portsmouth offer as Celtic are a great club". Goal.com. 7 September 2009. 
  13. ^ a b "Ki to make Celtic move in January". BBC Sport. 28 August 2009. 
  14. ^ Ki impresses on Celtic debut Asian Football Confederation, 18 January 2010
  15. ^ Celtic 4 – 0 St Mirren BBC Sport, 22 August 2010
  16. ^ a b Celtic's Ki Sung Yueng wins October young player prize BBC Sport, 9 November 2010
  17. ^ Ki wins Young Player of the Month award Celtic FC, 9 November 2010
  18. ^ "Racist abuse at St Johnstone-Celtic game to be investigated". The Courier (Dundee). 2 November 2010. Retrieved 31 December 2013. 
  19. ^ Celtic 2 – 2 Inverness CT BBC Sport, 27 November 2010
  20. ^ Celtic 2 – 0 St Johnstone BBC Sport, 26 December 2010
  21. ^ Forsyth, Roddy (26 December 2010). "Celtic 2 St Johnstone 0: match report". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 31 December 2013. 
  22. ^ "Celtic dominate Rangers Cup clash but replay beckons". Scotzine. 6 February 2010. Retrieved 31 December 2013. 
  23. ^ Campbell, Andy (2 March 2011). "Celtic 1 – 0 Rangers". BBC Sport. Retrieved 31 December 2013. 
  24. ^ Celtic beat Motherwell in Scottish Cup final to end season on a high guardian.co.uk, 21 May 2011
  25. ^ a b c "Celtic lift the 2011 Scottish Cup". Scottish FA. 21 May 2011. 
  26. ^ "Ki Sung-yueng can be anything he wants to be – Celtic boss Neil Lennon". Goal.com. 25 July 2011. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  27. ^ "Celtic in hands off warning over Ki Sung Yueng". Evening Times. 15 August 2011. Retrieved 15 August 2011. 
  28. ^ "Celtic 1–1 Udinese". BBC Sport. 29 September 2011. Retrieved 29 September 2011. 
  29. ^ a b "Koo Ja-Cheol, Park Ji-Sung & the top five South Koreans in Europe for the 2011–12 season". goal.com. Retrieved 25 May 2012. 
  30. ^ Friel, David (July 10, 2012). "Brendan’s Ki-high thinking". The Sun (London). Retrieved February 24, 2013. 
  31. ^ McGowan, Stephen (19 August 2011). "Lennon warns McLeish over Ki as Villa boss plots moves for Celtic stars". London: Daily Mail. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  32. ^ "Ki Sung-Yeung completes record move to Swansea City from Celtic". BBC Sport. 24 August 2012. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  33. ^ "Swansea 3–1 Barnsley". BBC Sport. 28 August 2012. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  34. ^ Hicks, Max (13 March 2013). "Swans yet to unlock Ki's potential". ESPN FC. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  35. ^ Barker, Ben (7 May 2013). "A South Korean factor in South Wales". backpagefootball.com. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  36. ^ a b c Hunter, Andy (24 February 2013). "Nathan Dyer double helps Swansea ruin Bradford's Capital One Cup dream". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  37. ^ a b c "Ki enjoys League Cup glory as gamble pays off". football.co.uk. 24 February 2013. Retrieved 30 December 2013. 
  38. ^ "Ki Sung-Yeung makes Sunderland loan move from Swansea". BBC Sport. 31 August 2013. Retrieved 31 August 2013. 
  39. ^ "Sunderland 2–1 Chelsea". BBC Sport. 17 December 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  40. ^ "League Cup – Ki fires Sunderland past Chelsea and into semis". UK Eurosport. 17 December 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  41. ^ "Everton 0 Sunderland 1". The Guardian. 26 December 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  42. ^ "Ki penalty sinks 10-man Toffees". ESPN. 26 December 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  43. ^ Winrow, Ian (11 January 2014). "Fulham 1 Sunderland 4: match report". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  44. ^ McNulty, Phil (22 January 2014). "Man Utd 2 Sunderland 1; Sunderland win 2–1 on penalties". BBC Sport. Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  45. ^ a b Winter, Henry (2 March 2014). "Manchester City 3 Sunderland 1: City win Capital One Cup final at Wembley – match report". London: The Telegraph. Retrieved 8 March 2014. 
  46. ^ a b Edwards, Luke (12 May 2014). "Sunderland Premier League season review for 2013-14". The Telegraph. Retrieved 12 May 2014. 
  47. ^ a b Hunter, James (9 May 2014). "Sunderland's summer clearout has begun, with Andrea Dossena and Ki Sung-Yueng already departing". Chronicle Live. Retrieved 12 May 2014. 
  48. ^ a b "축구희망 기성용". Hankook. 22 December 2009. Retrieved 29 January 2011. 
  49. ^ "South Korea reveal final squad". BBC Sport. 1 June 2010. Retrieved 29 January 2011. 
  50. ^ a b "Ki Sung Yueng". BBC Sport. Retrieved 29 January 2011. 
  51. ^ "Celtic Football Club". celticfc.net. Retrieved 29 January 2012. 
  52. ^ Sami Mokbel (7 August 2012). "Arsenal target Celtic midfielder Ki Sung-yeung". Daily Mail (London). Retrieved 2013-12-30. 
  53. ^ Winter, Henry (8 August 2012). "London 2012 Olympics: Brazil face final showdown with Mexico after beating South Korea 3-0 in men's football". The Telegraph. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  54. ^ a b "2012 Olympics - Soccer (Mens) - Bronze medal game". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  55. ^ "World Cup 2014: Premier League players in South Korea squad". BBC Sport. 29 May 2014. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  56. ^ "KI Sungyueng". FIFA.com. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  57. ^ "World Cup 2014: South Korea pelted with toffees on return home". The Guardian. 30 June 2014. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  58. ^ "기성용 '답답하면 너희가 뛰어라' 발언, 네티즌 '경솔했다'" (in Korean). 디시뉴스. 20 November 2007. 
  59. ^ "Japan 2–2 South Korea (AET, 3–0 Pens)". Bangkok Post. 25 January 2011. Retrieved 28 January 2011. 
  60. ^ a b "Asian Cup chief plays down Ki racism row". One HD. 27 January 2011. 
  61. ^ a b Hannah, Roger (28 January 2011). "Cheeky MonKI". The Scottish Sun. Retrieved 29 January 2011. 
  62. ^ "SNS 논란, 해프닝 아닌 심각한 문제" (in Korean). 김현회 칼럼. 4 July 2013. 
  63. ^ "Ki Sung-yueng Sorry for Insulting National Coach". The Chosun Ilbo. 8 July 2013. 
  64. ^ "Ki Sung-yueng Escapes Penalty for Badmouthing Coach". The Chosun Ilbo. 11 July 2013. 
  65. ^ http://www.fitbastats.com/celtic/player.php?playerid=2958
  66. ^ http://www.soccerway.com/players/sung-yeung-ki/26915/
  67. ^ "기성용•지소연, 축구협회 '올해의 선수'(종합)". Yonhap (in Korean) (Naver.com). 20 December 2011. 
  68. ^ Jee-ho, Yoo (21 December 2012). "Midfielder Ki Sung-yueng wins second straight player of the year award". Yonhap News Agency. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  69. ^ "Ki Sung Yueng Admits to His Relationship with Han Hye Jin on Twitter". enewsWorld. 27 March 2013. 
  70. ^ "Ki Sung-yeung, Han Hye-jin Go Public with Relationship". The Chosun Ilbo. 28 March 2013. 
  71. ^ "Actress-footballer couple confirms July wedding". The Korea Times. 10 May 2013. 
  72. ^ "Han Hye-jin, Ki Sung-yueng to Wed This Summer". The Chosun Ilbo. 13 May 2013. 
  73. ^ "Han Hye Jin and Ki Sung Yueng are Already a Married Couple". enewsWorld. 26 June 2013. 
  74. ^ "Han Hye Jin and Ki Sung Yueng Say They'll Live Happily After Their Wedding Today". enewsWorld. 1 July 2013. 
  75. ^ "Soccer player Ki marries Han Hye-jin". The Korea Herald. 1 July 2013. 
  76. ^ "Han Hye-jin, Ki Sung-yueng Exchange Marriage Vows". The Chosun Ilbo. 2 July 2013. 
  77. ^ "Swansea City star Ki Sung-Yueng ties the knot with glamorous Han Hye-jin". WalesOnline. 2 July 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 

External links[edit]