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Professional Facility but Amateur Management

Posted June. 11, 2001 20:07,   


A Japanese reporter, who came to Korea to collect news materials on the Confederation Cup, sent an article that says, ``one can feel a mood of England, the country of soccer, watching a soccer game in Ulsan.`` Although there was a shameful accident of leaking water from the roof, the facility of Ulsan’s Moonsu Stadium, a stadium built exclusively for soccer, is in a level of world class. Suwon World Cup Stadium and Daegu Stadium are in the same level as well.

It has been evaluated that Korea’s newly built stadiums provided the highest condition to host the Confederation Cup event. They gave both spectators and players satisfaction with the spectators’ seats that give best possible views, wide sections for reporters, clear electric scoreboards, and the well-maintained lawn fields.

However, there were many parts that could not match with the level of facilities in managing the event. There was lack of unity between two co-host of the event, the Korea Football Association (KFA) and the Korean Organizing Committee (KOC) for the 2002 FIFA World Cup. Although the KFA was in charge of planning, public relation, and management of games, and the KOC took charge in providing manpower and lodging, after all, most parts of management were operated by the KOC undergoing a hardship due to lack of manpower.

Transportation management has been also pointed out as a problem. Even though they built temporary bus stops around the stadiums for the event, it did not turn out with a satisfactory result due to lack of propaganda. In case of Daegu, the distance between the stadium and the bus stop was too far. In Suwon, the traffic condition was very bad because it took a long time to get to the stadium due to the rush-hour traffic. But, Ulsan that prepared a various bus routes got a better grade comparing with other cities. Securing of better public transportation routes as well as operating the shuttle buses have risen as significant issues for next year’s World Cup.

There was also a problem in educating voluntary helpers. Most of them did their best doing their duties sincerely. But, some of them were concentrating on watching the game, not doing their designated duties. Some of them were even having their meals at the stand with groups of three to five people producing unpleasant scenes.

Uniformed policemen and security personnel who stationed everywhere in the stadiums were an eyesore as well. It has been pointed out that maintaining of order in stadiums should be done by voluntary helpers.

Joo Sung-Won swon@donga.com