29 May 2024

“U-20 Ace” A team in a year…BAE JUNHO’s “Growing Up”

By pestfood.com

From his outstanding performance at last year’s FIFA U-20 World Cup to his European appearance and joining the A team. This is the journey that 21-year-old Stoke City player Bae Joon-ho, one of the future players of Korean soccer, has taken over the past year. Indeed, the Korean soccer team has seen rapid growth.

Bae Jun-ho proudly made the list of the A-team call-up for the second Asian qualifying round for the 2026 FIFA North and Central America World Cup against Singapore and China to be held in June. At the invitation of interim coach Kim Do-hoon, he proudly put on the national flag as the “youngest child born in 2003.”

Judging from his performance in this season regardless of his young age, it is a natural step to join the A-team. He left Daejeon Hana Citizen to join Stoke City last summer, and immediately became the core of his team from the first season after moving to the English Championship.

Bae Joon-ho played in 38 championship matches (25 starts) this season, and recorded two goals and five assists. Watchers say in local assessments that his influence at the center of the attack beyond the second-most points in his team is the “Ace of Stoke City.” In fact, he won the Stoke City Player of the Month award three times, and even took the club’s Player of the Year award after finishing the season. It was an achievement that he achieved in his first season in Europe at a young age.

In particular, it was significant that his talent, which had been in the spotlight since childhood, is actually leading to remarkable growth. Bae, who was considered one of the biggest promising players in high school, showed off his extraordinary talent even after joining Daejeon and joining the professional league. He quickly adapted to the professional stage and moved back and forth from the side to the center. Bae’s presence was even more outstanding after he was promoted to the K League 1.

It was the same at last year’s FIFA U-20 World Cup. He played as Kim Eun-joong’s ace and became a leading player in the semi-finals. His talents at the K-League as well as the U-20 World Cup naturally led to a “love call” in Europe. “He is not the kind of player I can embrace. I need to grow on a bigger stage,” Daejeon coach Lee Min-seong said in high evaluation of his potential. In fact, the team willingly opened the door for his players to advance to Europe for their future.

Furthermore, he served as Stoke City’s ace from his first season in Europe, which naturally led to the result of his first selection of the A team. His talent, which was considered the future of Korean soccer while playing on the U-20 World Cup last year, has begun to become the present of Korean soccer in a year.

The next step is a soft landing for the A-team. It is highly utilized as it is a second-tier resource that can be used both on the sides and in the center. Competition for the second-tier team is fierce, but many predict that if Bae shows competitiveness in his own style, he will be able to establish himself as an important offensive card for the team. 안전놀이터

Moreover, given that he is still young, there are endless possibilities for his future development. If his experience as a national team member is added, his growth could be even greater. Two years younger than Lee Kang-in (Paris Saint-Germain), who was the youngest player in the national team for a long time, is now waiting for his A-match debut.