A Cylon in the Ranks

AS Uijeongbu 07 recorded a 3-1 win over Steeple Sinderby Wanderers in a GL fixture Wednesday morning (621329331) that created a buzz amongst many of the club’s fans. It wasn’t the opponent or the scoreline that was generating interest though, but rather the unexpected appearance of a new player wearing the local Uijeongbu green.

Young-Chae Kim (399723793) arrived in north Gyeonggi province following early morning (5:00am!) transfer negotiations and a 56억 Won fee paid to fellow K-League side and championship rival FCFC Ulsan. This same club has been a thorn in the side of Au7 recently in both the Korea Cup and K-League with a series of ‘fortunate’ wins when the odds were not in their favor. It’s the stuff that dreams are made of for an underdog — or nightmares if you’re a fan of the losing side, but that’s a discussion for another time.

Questions were immediately raised over the manager’s decision to pay so much for an out-of-form player that was being discarded by a team lower in the standings; with several aging players in the squad surely another area was more deserving of attention than bringing in yet another midfielder. After all, wasn’t the club already training homegrown talents Dae-Seon Choi and Hae-Jong Kim to become the core of a rejuvenated midfield for future seasons?

While it’s unfortunate that Au7 is helping to fund FCFC Ulsan’s next transfer, Kim is expected to serve as a utility player until his form recovers enough for him to feature in league fixtures. The Golden League is expected to serve as an ideal environment to see how the 28 year old performs as AS Uijeongbu 07 has rejoined the ‘race for gold’ and a fourth consecutive GL title.

All well and good, but there’s an additional reason behind the interest in the player. There were other midfielders on the transfer market with skills similar to Kim’s but the detail that caught paquebot’s interest, and ultimately resulted in the transfer, is that Kim is a former youth academy player from Songbuk Cylons (788305).

Led by the Australian ProfKaos, Songbuk Cylons was an early inspiration for Au7 in Hattrick and was one of the very first teams to adopt a kit design by paquebot. Fans across the country were saddened when news came that ProfKaos’ side had gone ownerless and then bot weeks later; the chance to preserve some small memory of the former Hanguk giant was an appealing draw and sparked the interest that eventually resulted in Kim joining AS Uijeongbu 07. Whether or not this will turn out to be a wise decision remains to be seen, but staff at the club are excited to have the opportunity to work with a player from such a storied background. Let’s hope he lives up to expectations!

About paquebot

Originally from the United States and now living in South Korea, paquebot has been playing Hattrick from the midpoint of Season 41. Since starting Hattrick he has won both the K-League title and the Korea Cup ... though probably because nobody else was trying very hard.