A jamboree bombshell is hitting the South Korean soccer scene.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism announced on Monday that it will host the 2023 Saemangeum Jamboree K-pop concert at 7 p.m. on Nov. 11 at Seoul World Cup Stadium. The jamboree closing ceremony will also be held at the same venue before the concert.
The ministry changed the venue of the K-pop concert from Jeonju World Cup Stadium to Seoul World Cup Stadium, explaining that the decision was necessitated by the forecast of Typhoon Kanun passing over the Korean Peninsula.
The jamboree debacle spilled over into Korean soccer. Earlier, the K-pop concert was scheduled to be held at Saemangeum, but was quickly changed to Jeonju World Cup Stadium on June 6. Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Park Bo-gyun and Jeollabuk-do Governor Kim Kwan-young explained at the Jamboree press center that the move was the result of “comprehensive consideration of capacity and travel conditions.”
The unilateral decision was a slap in the face to domestic soccer. Jeonbuk Hyundai, which uses the Jeonju World Cup Stadium as its home, was scheduled to play an FA Cup game against Incheon United on the 9th and a league home game against Suwon Samseong on the 12th. Considering the stage set-up and performances, the stadium had no place to play two games at once.
On the 7th, Jeonbuk announced the rescheduling on social media and offered a full refund to ticket holders for the Incheon match. The team also said that it could not find an alternative stadium and would announce the rescheduled date later.
Jeonbuk head coach Dan Petrescu was stunned. “This is something I’ve never experienced in my life,” he said.
The back-and-forth continued. On the 7th, it was announced that the K-pop concert, which was scheduled to be held at the Jeonju World Cup Stadium, would be rescheduled to the Seoul World Cup Stadium due to the typhoon. Despite multiple media reports, neither the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism nor the Jamboree organizers made an announcement.
Unable to wait, the Korea Football Association announced on the 8th that the FA Cup match between Jeonbuk and Incheon had been rescheduled. “We are sorry for the disruption to the schedule and preparations of everyone, including soccer fans who planned to attend the games due to variables related to the jamboree, and both clubs preparing for home and away games,” it said.
Later, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism announced that the Jamboree closing ceremony and K-pop concert would be held at the Seoul World Cup Stadium, and the KFA announced that the match between Jeonbuk and Suwon Samseong would go ahead as scheduled. As a result, only the schedules of Jeonbuk and Incheon, which were able to proceed normally, were disrupted.
Incheon, the away team, was also affected. Incheon played a league away match against Jeonbuk on the 6th. They had planned to stay in Jeonju to prepare for the game, as they would meet Jeonbuk again in the FA Cup on the 9th, but the unexpected impact of the Jamboree forced them to make an unplanned return trip to Incheon. We traveled to Jeonju with a larger-than-normal squad for the two competitions and returned in vain. It was also costly. Incheon had to pay a penalty for canceling their accommodation and training center. 꽁머니지급 The same goes for the fans of both teams who were planning to watch the game.
The Jamboree fallout isn’t over. FC Seoul is the next team to be hit with the bomb. The club, which calls Seoul World Cup Stadium home, has no home games scheduled for the next 19 days. That’s why a Seoul official said, “We’re playing away during that time,” when asked about a K-pop concert at Seoul World Cup Stadium the day before.
They added one clarifying clue. “Since the E seats are movable, we can perform without damaging the grass,” the Seoul official said at the time, adding, “If the grass is damaged in the current weather, it could be a big problem, so we are keeping a close eye on it.”
Our fears were realized. The stage that is currently being set up at the Seoul World Cup Stadium is located on the goal side of the S-seat instead of the E-seat. This means that the 40,000+ participants will be able to enjoy the stage on the field instead of in the stands.
In 2021, Seoul World Cup Stadium installed a hybrid turf, which is a mixture of natural and artificial grass. In the past, national team players such as Ki Sung-yong (FC Seoul) and Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur) have complained about the condition of the turf. In fact, the recent Coupang Play series between Manchester City and Atletico Madrid was praised for its fast drainage and good turf condition even in heavy rain.
Seoul World Cup Stadium, the mecca of Korean soccer, is in danger of falling victim to the jamboree of unpreparedness and lameness. The jamboree bombs that have been blowing up the Korean soccer world, Jeonbuk and Incheon, are also set to explode in Seoul. At the same time, the speed of soccer fans will also explode.