Park Ji-sung, Jeonbuk Hyundai Technical Director, left advice to Asian players seeking to advance to Europe to learn the language.안전놀이터
AFC released a wide interview with director Park Ji-sung on the 23rd. The interview seems to have taken place before and after the draw for the 2023 AFC Qatar Asian Cup finals held in Doha, Qatar on the 10th, and director Park Ji-sung explained why he tried to walk the path of a soccer administrator, not a coach. He also left advice for Asian players who dream of advancing to the big leagues as the most successful Asian player in Europe.
Park Ji-sung said, “I thought it was not suitable for me to become a coach after retirement. Still, I wanted to join the soccer world, so I focused on the administrative aspect. “I spent my time on sports management research education, and through this, I also learned about Asian grassroots and youth soccer structures,” he said.
“There are many talent in Asia that have not yet been discovered. I learned that it can improve the youth structure to provide the right environment for future generations. “If we invest resources in the youth system like Europe or South America, I am confident that there will be many great players in Asia in the future,” he said.
Park Ji-sung was surprised by their leadership and said it was something he couldn’t do, looking at the coaches who coached him, such as Guus Hiddink and Alex Ferguson.
Asked why he didn’t want to coach, Park said, referring to the two coaches, “They communicated with the players in a special way. They could make players follow instructions and motivate them to do their best 100%. This communication technique was incredible. There are more than 20 players on the first team, but only 11 players will start, so even other players who cannot play should be managed. This was a really difficult job, and it was something I thought I couldn’t do.” In other words, his “servants” served as a reason why he should not be directing.
He advised junior players who want to advance to Europe to learn the language. “Europe is completely different from Asia,” Park said. After saying, “The grass and weather are completely different,” he said, “If you go straight to Europe, it can be difficult because you have no experience living in other countries,” adding, “The Japanese J-League experience in the early days of your career helped you a lot in overseas life.”
“I would like to advise you to learn a language first if you want to go abroad. If you can speak European languages, you can talk to anyone on the team. It doesn’t matter whether it’s English, Portuguese, or French.”
Park Ji-sung said, “No one told me then that I should learn a language. In the Netherlands, there were Dutch classes for foreigners and I personally learned English. So, when I went to England, it helped me a lot to communicate with the players and adapt to their culture through a little English that I did,” he said, stressing that language acquisition is a task that must be achieved even if no one is reckless.