“Coach Bento is one of the best coaches I’ve ever met in my football life.”
Jung Woo-young (33, Al Sadd), midfielder of the Korean national soccer team, had a successful year.
Jung Woo-young, who protected Korea’s defensive line and was also the starting point of the build-up, contributed to his national team’s advancement to the 2022 Qatar World Cup by taking on all kinds of dirty work. However, in the process, the weight given by the Taegeuk mark was not light, and criticism continued based on performance, and they bowed their heads.
However, coach Paulo Bento patted Jung Woo-young’s shoulder with trust and raised his head, and eventually Jung Woo-young became the ‘Unsung Hero’ who led Korea to the Qatar World Cup round of 16, ending 2022 happily did.
In an interview with Sport TV News, Jung Woo-young referred to coach Bento who believed in him as “the best coach I’ve ever met in my football career.” He also swallowed regret, saying, “The judgment was late” for the penalty kick awarded against Brazil in the round of 16 of the World Cup in Qatar on the 6th (Korean time).
Below is the content of the Spotify News interview conducted on the 14th.
-His personal experience of advancing to the round of 16 in the World Cup for the first time. How did you feel when the round of 16 was confirmed? And after the game, how did you feel watching the match between Uruguay and Ghana?
“It was a dream-like moment. Tears flowed uncontrollably as I recalled the process I had been preparing for and the adversity of the past four years. I thought it didn’t make sense not to go up, so I didn’t worry too much.”
-In this World Cup, you performed impressively in the midfield along with Lee Jae-seong and Hwang In-beom. What kind of colleagues are the two players who have been breathing for a long time to Jung Woo-young?
“Jaeseong and Inbeom are the players who have worked together for the longest time. I think it can be described as knowing what kind of play they will play and where they will be in this situation without talking to each other. Both players were originally excellent players, but they continue to grow. I watched them do it right next to them, and now I am very proud of them. Both players are players with the attitude of dedication to the team that the team needs, and I think they are the best partners with a lot to learn from even though they are younger brothers.”
-Now, Al Sadd colleague and Ghana national team striker Andre IU faced off against each other. Do you have any special conversations after the match?
“After IU’s group stage match, she texted, “Congratulations, Korea was such a great team, and you deserve to advance to the round of 16.”
-The penalty kick given against Brazil was a moment that received so much attention that foreign media even debated whether it was a mistake or not. How did you feel when the penalty kick was awarded?
“I think I was late in my judgment. It should have been handled with one touch, but I thought a lot in a short moment. It was very slight, but I felt Hischarlisson’s feet touching my feet, and I thought I would do a VAR check, and it didn’t change. I thought, ‘A penalty kick is right.’ More than anything, I felt sorry for my teammates. Later, when I saw the video, it was regrettable that there were ambiguous parts, but I admitted that Hischarlisson’s play was clever.”
-You have the same name as Freiburg Jung Woo-young. Are there any interesting anecdotes that happened within the national team in this regard?
“It’s usually okay, but the problem was when Wooyoung and I were playing and training on the same team. Even since we were playing just one block above, we were so confused about who we were really calling, so it wasn’t once or twice that we both looked at each other every time we called. ‘What nickname? I thought, ‘Should I make one?’, but my colleagues were in a hurry during the game, so in the end they called me Woo-young. I heard that it was the first time a person with the same name participated in the World Cup, and I think Woo-young and I will remember it for the rest of our lives. “
-It has already been more than 8 years since you debuted in the A team in 2015. Among all the matches Jung Woo-young played with the Taegeuk mark in his heart, what would be the three most memorable matches?
“It’s been over 8 years now. A lot of games come to mind, and if it was the same as before, I would have picked the match against Germany (2018 Russia World Cup Group Stage 3), but now I want to say that this is the 3 group stage matches. It would have been better if it was better.’ 스포츠토토
I had such thoughts in many national team matches, so after the World Cup was over, I said, ‘Let’s not play games that leave regrets, let’s play without regrets’ countless times. I repeated. I didn’t have any regrets because I poured out desperately from Uruguay to Ghana and Portugal. And I think I was most proud of being able to show our football on the stage of the World Cup.”
– Coach Paulo Bento, who left the national team at the end of this World Cup, favored Jung Woo-young. What kind of coach was Bento coach to you?
“Coach Bento was one of the best coaches in my football life. It was a time where I learned a lot both footballally and personally. He made me realize the importance of detail in football and left a lot in the history of Korean football. It was such a great honor to be able to spend that time with him, and I feel very sad that I can no longer be with him, but wherever the director goes, I want to sincerely support him in his next career.”
The Spotify News interview with Jung Woo-young continues in Part 2.