(Xportsnews Suwon, Kwon Dong-hwan) Suwon FC head coach Kim Do-gyun (46) said he was disappointed with Park Joo-ho’s 안전놀이터 (36) decision to retire but decided to respect the player’s wishes.
Kim spoke about Park, who recently announced his retirement from active duty, ahead of the team’s ‘Hana OneQ K League 1 2023’ 15th round match against Gwangju FC at 6 p.m. on Nov. 28 at Suwon Sports Complex.
The news of Park Joo-ho’s decision to retire from active duty came as a surprise to soccer fans on March 26.
Park made his professional debut in Japan’s J-League and went on to play in Europe for FC Basel, Mainz, and Borussia Dortmund from 2011 to 2017.
For the South Korean national soccer team, Park has made 40 appearances for the Taeguk-marked squad, scoring one goal.
After returning to the Korean K League in 2018, Park played for Ulsan Hyundai until 2020 and then Suwon FC from 2021, but he raised eyebrows when he decided to retire during the 2023 season.
The reason for his retirement was reportedly to care for his wife, who is battling cancer. Park’s wife, Anna, revealed on Instagram last November that she was undergoing cancer treatment at Asan Medical Center in Seoul.
“We haven’t talked much about his retirement yet,” Kim said at the pre-match press conference, adding, “The player’s decision is important, and I respect that as a coach.”
“He has made a lot of effort and dedication to our team, so I didn’t expect when he would retire, but it was his own decision, so I decided to respect it,” he said, adding, “I think he will do his best until the end.”
Kim revealed that Park came to him in person to announce his retirement.
“I didn’t hear about his retirement elsewhere, he came to me directly,” Kim said, adding, “I think he had a lot of thoughts and worries when he brought it up.”
He also said, “It’s a shame. I want him to stay until the end of the season, but he has his own decision, so I decided to respect it,” he said.
Suwon announced that Park’s retirement ceremony will be held on June 6 at home against Ulsan Hyundai in the 17th round of the league as a pre-match ceremony to match his number 6 jersey.
With time running out for him to play in a Suwon jersey, Park showed his commitment to the team and fans by starting against Gwangju.