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At Last, Ahn Gets 1st Bundesliga Goal

Posted May. 05, 2006 03:18,   


Ahn Jung-hwan (30, Duisburg) scored his first goal in the German Bundesliga as Korean national team manager Dick Advocaat watched. It was at a home game against Werder Bremen held in Duisburg yesterday, 76 days after his last appearance as a starting member on February 18 against Leverkusen.

Duisburg was trailing 0-3 when Ahn Jung-hwan scored the first goal for the team with four minutes left in the first half. Alexander Bugera ditched the goalie and passed the ball to Ahn, who dashed forward and nudged the ball into the goal with his right foot. With yesterday’s goal, Ahn became the first Korean soccer player to score goals in three different European leagues: Italy’s Serie-A, France’s Le Championnat, and Germany’s Bundesliga.

His goal was especially meaningful under the gaze of Dick Advocaat, who was conducting a last-minute checkup of the national team members playing in European leagues. When Advocaat visited him on March 18, Ahn played against Frankfurt as a replacement one minute into the second half, but did not show much. Advocaat was quoted as saying that he was disappointed by this. Coach Pim Verbeek visited another Duisburg match on April 1, but playing as a replacement again at 21 minutes into the second half, Ahn’s performance was as lame as before. As it turned out, the third time was the charm. Despite the last-ditch effort put up by Ahn and his teammates, Duisburg lost the match, 3-5. With a total of 4 wins, 11 draws, and 17 losses, Duisburg landed at the bottom of the league; and its demotion has become certain regardless of the outcome of its remaining games.

Jae-Yun Jung jaeyuna@donga.com