WTTGT Writer: Gareth Fletcher
The South Korean striker, Park Chu-Young, has put pen to paper at Arsenal for an undisclosed fee reported to be £2.6m after running out on a possible move to French side Lille, thus becoming the ninth Korean to play in the English Premier League.
The player left his hotel room in the middle of the night in a bid to seal the move, showing real intent and courage.
The South Korean captain, who has made over 91 appearances for the French club Monaco scored 12 goals in 33 league games last season and has made 53 appearances for South Korea, scoring 17 goals for his country.
He has a keen eye for goal and good technical abilities with 199 appearances for his club, scoring 61 and assisting 19 times, as well as taking over the role as captain of South Korea from the former international and Manchester United winger, Park Ji-Sung.
Park was named the Asian Young Footballer of the Year by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) in 2005, and won the top rookie award in South Korea’s K-League later that year with 18 goals in 30 games.
“I had to choose between Lille and Arsenal,” said Park Chu-Young to Arsenal’s Official Site as he arrived home in South Korea on Monday for national team duty. “I wanted to choose without regret.” Whether Arsène Wenger will say the same after signing the 26-year-old striker remains to be seen.
However, Park has been a huge star in his homeland since becoming Asian Young Player of 2004 and impressing for FC Seoul from 2005. Later, he suffered from injuries and loss of form, but that is all behind him.
“It is a dream to be here and I am really proud to be an Arsenal player,” he said. “Now I just want to show how good I am and prove myself. I will do my best, I will never give up, I will show heart, I will give everything and I hope (the fans) will support me.”
The club said that Park will wear No. 9. Though his name is spelled “Chu-Young,” Park prefers “Ju-Young,” and his shirt will declare “J.Y.Park” on the back.
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