Soccer field under fire at Saemangeum Jamboree…Jeonbuk Hyundai forced to reschedule

The sparks of the 2023 Saemangeum World Scout Jamboree have spilled over onto the soccer field.

The decision to hold the jamboree’s K-pop concert at Jeonju World Cup Stadium on Nov. 11 unintentionally forced the professional soccer team Jeonbuk Hyundai, which was scheduled to play a home game at the same time, to change its schedule or venue.

“The K-pop performance event and closing ceremony of the 2023 Saemangeum World Scouting Jamboree will be held at Jeonju World Cup Stadium on the 11th of this month,” the club announced on its social networking service (SNS) on June 6. “Therefore, the two home games scheduled for next week will be rescheduled.

Jeonbuk was originally scheduled to host Incheon United in the quarterfinals of the Korea Football Association (FA) Cup on Sept. 9 and Suwon Samsung in the 26th round of the K League 1 (1st Division) on Sept. 12.

However, as the concert was held on the 11th, the team was unable to play its home game due to the work of setting up and dismantling the stage and facilities.

The Jamboree K-pop concert was originally planned to be held on a special stage outside Saemangeum on the same night, but it was unclear whether it would be held amid the heat wave and controversy over poor management, and it was suddenly decided to hold it at Jeonju World Cup Stadium on the 11th.

The Korean Football Association and the clubs involved are planning to discuss a new venue and rescheduling.

Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Park Bo-gyun held a press conference at the Saemangeum Jamboree Press Center in Buanan, Jeollabuk-do on the same day, saying, “The K-pop concert is the highlight of the Jamboree,” adding, “Due to the unprecedented situation of extreme heat worsening the performance environment, it was inevitable to change the venue and date of the concert and reorganize the program.” Jeonju World Cup Stadium will host the event.

“We are very grateful to the Jeonbuk Hyundai team for their cooperation in moving to another stadium for the K-pop concert,” said Kim Kwan-young, Governor of Jeonbuk Province, adding, “It is not too late to criticize the event after it is over. We will renew the Scouting spirit of challenge, pioneering, and unity, and work with everyone who supports us to make the Jamboree a great success 꽁머니.”

Fans reacted strongly. On Jeonbuk’s social media page announcing the rescheduling, fans wrote, “Jeonju World Cup Stadium is where we play soccer. Don’t ruin the turf. What kind of jamboree is K-pop when the league is in full swing?” and “As a Jeonbuk fan, this is an insult to the FA Cup semifinals.”

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