Cho Hyun-woo, the goalkeeper of Ulsan HD, continued his stellar performance in the heart of Japan.

Ulsan won a dramatic 2-1 victory in the second leg of the 2023/2024 AFC Champions League (ACL) round of 16 at Tokyo National Stadium at 6 p.m. on the 21st, thanks to Joo Min-kyu’s winning goal in the second half of the match. At the two matches against Korea and Japan, Ulsan successfully advanced to the quarterfinals with a combined score of 5-1.

Joo Min-kyu, who scored three goals in two games, was the best by far, but Cho Hyun-woo, who firmly defended the last shot, also shone.

Cho has been named the best 11 for seven consecutive seasons in the K-League 1 alone since the 2017 season, and has grabbed the Golden Gloves for nine consecutive seasons when the K-League 2 is added. He defended his team’s goalie every time he faced crisis during the last season, supporting its win. He stayed in the semifinals but displayed stellar defense performances at the Qatar Asian Cup, which ended recently.

Cho, who was good at blocking, was coached by Hong Myung-bo and now has skills with his feet. Ulsan uses build-up soccer, which starts with the goalkeeper. “I will play build-up soccer with a faster tempo than the previous season,” coach Hong Myung-bo said in this season.

Jo Hyeon-woo attended an official press conference a day before the game and said, “I have had a great experience with Coach Hong Myung-bo for several years. We have won two titles in the league. We are doing well, but I personally think we are not good enough,” Cho said. “To go higher, we need to make a stable play in the back and help our teammates. We need to focus for 90 minutes. We will continue to improve and play well in the ACL and the league.”

Despite being the best in Ulsan and the national team, he is always the same. This humility was clearly demonstrated in the second match against Koh. On the day, Koh shot 27 times. Cho blocked all of them. He missed only one. He lost a point at a corner kick at the 43rd minute of the second half. There was no other way. Even Japanese reporters were shaking their heads because of his stellar defense. He was selected as the MOM of the match. 꽁머니사이트

The press conference before and after the game was his solo performance. Cho said, “I expected it to be a tough game. I knew my opponent would push hard in front of me because he needed to score. I think he won because his teammates did a good job.”

Now Ulsan will face Jeonbuk in the quarterfinals of the ALC. Cho said, “We respect any team. I want to focus on playing the game we want. We need a good defense from the goalkeeper to go higher. We will have a great game in the quarterfinals.”

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