The Special Olympics Korea K-League integrated soccer Unified Cup, which brings together people with developmental disabilities and non-disabled people, is now in its third year.
This competition has been held since 2020 in collaboration with the Korea Professional Football League and Special Olympics Korea (SOK), and is a competition that aims to break down the wall between non-disabled people and disabled people through the medium of ‘football’ and realize the values of social inclusion and equality. It is aimed at
This year, K League title sponsor Hana Financial Group participated. Last May, a soccer clinic was held in Jecheon as part of Season 3 of ‘Everyone’s Soccer Field, Everyone’s K-League’, and a friendly match was held against the Frankfurt Unified Soccer Team in August. And on October 7, the 2023 Special Olympics Korea K-League Unified Football Unified Cup was held in Daejeon. 스포츠토토
A total of 11 teams competed. Approximately 300 players from 10 K-League clubs and 1 team from the Korea Professional Football League took to the field. The integrated soccer team is made up of 10 special players (developmentally disabled), 10 partner players (non-disabled), and 5 coaching staff, and 6 special players and 5 partner players can participate in the game.
Among them, there was a team that stood out. This is the Jeju United integrated soccer team. The Jeju Unified Soccer Team was newly launched in September 2021.
It is composed of ‘Jeju FC’, a soccer team for the developmentally disabled belonging to the Jeju Island Disabled Soccer Association, and partner players.
Coach Kim Si-won, who has been coaching players at Jeju FC for 6 years even before the Jeju Unified Soccer Team was launched, said, “Special Olympics Korea contacted me first, so I came along.
We have been in a relationship with our partner athletes since 2019, and most of them are students of Jeju National University’s Department of Physical Education,” he explained.
On this day, the Jeju Unified Soccer Team defeated the Busan Unified Soccer Team 4-2 with ‘one team’ play. As befits a ‘place of harmony,’ the call play was smooth.
The Busan Unified Soccer Team is also a team that consistently participates in this competition and performs well, but Jeju was a complete winner. Jeju also previously defeated the Bucheon Unified Soccer Team 2-1.
Coach Kim said, “There are some outstanding individual skills, but there is also a driving force that comes from the desire to win.
In fact, it takes him about a year to perfect one tactic. “He may be slow in some areas, but he has a great desire to do so.”
The Jeju club not only participates in competitions, but also offers lessons to the club’s coaches, friendly soccer competitions for the coaching staff, donating 10 million won in support for the development of the developmentally disabled soccer team ‘Jeju FC’, and participating in the K-League-Special Olympics integrated soccer clinic. We are not sparing any interest and support.
Special player Hwang Beom-su, who has been active since Jeju FC, said, “The difference from before is that we are playing in Jeju’s uniform. He has pride.
I brag about it,” he said with a smile.
Hong Ji-hyeon, a Jeju official, said, “Not only did we receive special training from Jeju youth coaches and coaches, but we also played friendly games with the club.
I want to continue to support and help,” he said.
Meanwhile, in Group A, Jeju achieved 2 consecutive wins and Gyeongnam and Busan achieved 1 win and 1 loss, but Gyeongnam (+2) is ahead of Busan (-1) in goal difference.
And Bucheon has lost for the second time in a row. In Group B, Seongnam (+3) and Jeonbuk (+1) had 1 win and 1 draw, and Pohang (-1) and Incheon (-3) had 1 draw and 1 loss, but the rankings were divided in goal difference. In Group C, Asan, South Chungcheong Province had 2 consecutive wins, followed by Daejeon (1 win, 1 loss) and Federation (2 losses).