Former national soccer team coach Park Jong-hwan, who led Korea to the semifinals at the 1983 World Youth Championship in Mexico (predecessor of the FIFA U-20 World Cup), has passed away. He died at the age of 85.
The Korea Football Association (KFA) announced on the 8th that ‘Elder Park Jong-hwan passed away on the night of the 7th.’ His funeral is at the funeral hall of Soonchunhyang University Hospital in Yongsan-gu, Seoul.
Former coach Park, who was born in Woongjin, Hwanghae Province in 1983 and graduated from Chuncheon High School and Kyung Hee University, played for the Korea Coal Corporation. He played with the Taegeuk flag in the 2nd Asian Youth Championship (predecessor of the AFC U-20 Championship) held in Malaysia in 1960. After his retirement as a player, he worked as a coach as well as an international referee.
The moment that shined the most as a soccer player was definitely the semi-finals of the World Youth Championship. At the time, ‘Jong-Hwan Park’ lost 0-2 against Scotland in the first game of the group stage, but defeated the host country Mexico and Australia 2-1 and advanced to the quarterfinals. Afterwards, South America’s powerhouse Uruguay also reached the semifinals by winning 2-1. In particular, as all the offensive and defensive personnel roamed the field with tireless stamina and tenacity, the overseas media called Korean soccer the ‘Red Devil’, and this became the beginning of the ‘Red Devil’, which is now a symbol of Korean soccer.
Former coach Park also took charge of the A national team until the mid-1990s, but resigned after losing 2-6 to Iran in the 1996 Asian Cup finals. Afterwards, he succeeded in making a comeback as the first coach of Ilhwa Chunma, leading them to three consecutive wins in the K-League from 1993 to 1995, and later served as the president of the Women’s Football Federation and the first coaches of Daegu FC and Seongnam FC.
Former coach Park was also recorded as the main character on the front page of the first issue of Sports Seoul on June 22, 1985. At the time, this paper exclusively published an article titled ‘88 coach Park Jong-hwan goes to professional team.’ Former coach Park, who was enjoying national popularity after pulling off a miracle in the semifinals of the World Youth Championships, made a big impact in the domestic sports world when he declared that he would turn professional.토토사이트
Former coach Park, an amateur soccer player, returned to the Seoul City Hall team’s accommodation in Hyochang Stadium after leading the Olympic team and finishing the 15th President’s Cup International Soccer Tournament and met with this newspaper, saying, “I led a single team of the highest level, including both amateurs and professionals, and won an Olympic medal. After assuming that “winning is my constant goal,” he once said, “From now on, my ambition is to create a new wind on the professional stage.” This newspaper also reported that two to three companies that were preparing to establish a company at the time were negotiating with former director Park on the premise of delegating full authority to the founding process. In fact, former coach Park led 88 teams until just before the Seoul Olympics, and after many twists and turns, he took over as the head coach for the founding of Ilhwa Chunma in 1989.
Former coach Park, who has written the great history of Korean soccer, is known to have recently shown symptoms of sepsis after being infected with COVID-19 while living in a nursing hospital. He passed away late at night on October 7, 2023. His wife passed away first in 2016. Her surviving family includes one son and one daughter.