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‘Hwanghwang’ Ko Young-joon injured, ‘lack of strikers’ coach Kim Ki-dong sighs deeply

Hwang Sun-hong’s aces are falling one after another. After Uhm Won-sang (24-Ulsan), Ko Young-joon (22-Pohang) is also suspected to be injured.

Ko went down after colliding with opposing fullback Wu Xiaochong as he drove into the penalty box in the ninth minute of the second trial against China at Jinhua Stadium in Zhejiang, China, on Sept. 19, and was unable to get up in pain and was eventually substituted. At the time, Wu landed on Ko’s knee with his entire body, causing him to fall to the ground and complain of excruciating pain. The medical staff was then called in, and after checking his condition, he was given an ‘X’ on the bench to indicate that he was unable to play. Go limped off the field in a crutch and was captured on the broadcast camera. In the 15th minute of the second half, Ko was replaced by Hwang Jae-won (21-Daegu). 

Pohang Steelers coach Kim Ki-dong, who was watching the game, covered his head when Go Young-jun fell. “The moment he fell, I called the team doctor to check his condition,” Kim told Sports Chosun. At the moment, it looks like a medial ligament injury, but we need to have him examined,” he said with a deep sigh.

Kim’s frustration is understandable. Go was the team’s best resource in the 2023 season. After scoring six goals (four assists) in 37 games last year, he has six goals 메이저놀이터 (one assist) in 18 games this year. ‘Career highs’ are in the books. Most importantly, he has been playing as a main striker despite being only 22 years old, which has helped ease Kim’s under-22 card concerns. He is Kim’s ‘trusted man’ this season.

In the unlikely event that Ko is sidelined, Pohang’s thin depth will be exposed. It’s not too much of a problem to pick a first-team squad, but it does make the substitutes even more thin. Jung Jae-hee and Kim Jong-woo won’t be back until August, so the team will have less strength to survive the hot summer.


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