Korean soccer stars have been in the spotlight in this season’s European soccer summer transfer window, as former K League 1 Gangwon FC player Yang Hyun-jun has officially joined Scottish powerhouse Celtic.
Celtic announced the signings of Yang and Kwon Hyuk-kyu from the K League Two Busan I-Park through the club’s official website on July 24 (KST).
This brings the number of South Korean players at Celtic to three, including Oh Hyun-gyu, who joined from Suwon Samsung in January.
Yang made his professional debut for Gangwon in 2021 and emerged as a key resource for the club last season, scoring eight goals and providing four assists in 36 regular-season games.
He also earned a call-up to the A national team, and in 2022, he won both the K League Young Player of the Year and the Korea Football Association (KFA) Young Player of the Year awards.
On joining the club, Yang said: “This is a move I’ve been looking forward to. I’m very happy to be at Celtic and I’m looking forward to training with my new teammates.” “(Oh) Hyun-gyu spoke a lot of praise for the club and the supporters. I’m very much looking forward to playing in front of the great fans.”
Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers added: “Yang is a player we have been watching for a long time. “He is a promising player who will strengthen our attack,” said Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers.
I hope he can make an impact at Celtic,” he said. Earlier, Brentford (English Premier League) announced the signing of U-20 international Kim Ji-soo on March 27, while Paris Saint-Germain (French Ligue 1) signed Lee Kang-in to a five-year contract on March 9 and Stuttgart signed striker Jung Woo-young to a three-year contract on March 12.
Bayern Munich (German Bundesliga) announced a five-year contract with Kim Min-jae on the 19th, followed by Mittwilan (Danish Superliga) on the 20th.
In particular, Munich reportedly paid 50 million euros (approximately $71.5 billion) in transfer fees to bring Kim Min-jae from Napoli, breaking the record for the most expensive Asian transfer in history.
The previous record for the highest transfer fee for an Asian player was €30 million for Son Heung-min (Tottenham-Chuncheon). With Kim Min-jae’s transfer fee topping the Asian list, the top three spots are now occupied by South Korean players.
Lee Kang-in’s €22 million is the third highest transfer fee for a Korean player in Asia. This year’s influx of players to Europe has not only increased in quantity, but also in quality, raising the profile and competitiveness of Korean soccer to an all-time high.
Korean soccer fans can only wait for the dawn of the 2023-2024 season. Meanwhile, the European football summer transfer market, where ‘stars’ move, is expected to attract the attention of football fans around the world as the transfer markets of the English Premier League (EPL – June 14), German Bundesliga, Italian Serie A, and Spanish Primera League (July 1) open one after another, starting with the French Ligue 1 on June 10, and ending on September 1, when the transfer markets of the five big leagues close. 토토사이트