Posted June. 14, 2014 07:16,
The May 28 evaluation soccer match between the South Korean national soccer team and that of Tunisia kicked off with silence instead of the crowd`s roar. The Red Devil, the official support group for the South Korean squad, performed "silence cheering" for the first 16 minutes of the match in their gesture of sharing the pain of the victims of the deadly sinking of ferry Sewol. The desperate prayer for the 16 victims who are still missing moved the bereaved families of the victims. In an apparent response, a committee of the bereaved families met with the Red Devils members Wednesday and asked them to actively cheer for the national team without feeling sorry for the bereaved families. The request has put down the controversies over the street cheering events.
The 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil kicked off the 32-day event Friday. Since the 2002 World Cup games co-hosted by South Korea and Japan, Koreans have held the mass street cheering events across the country every four years. However, they greeted the world`s largest sports event in a quiet atmosphere in the wake of the ferry disaster. Having probably read the minds of the soccer fans, the victims` bereaved families offered to meet with the Red Devils. The families said, "We hope that the entire country become one at least for the moment of enjoying the World Cup games. All we want is that they do not forget us after the World Cup." The Red Devils reflected the bereaved families` wish into their slogan "Enjoy the World Cup. Remember Sewol."
The South Korean national team, led by head coach Hong Myung-bo, faces Russia on June 18, Algeria on June 23 and Belgium on June 27, with a goal of advancing to the quarter-finals for the first time in the team`s history. It is time for the team`s players to have good games to achieve their goal and for the people to have a festival in which they communicate with each other and make a new start. We hope that the ideologically, regionally and economically divided nation will become one in cheering for the national squad all together on the streets or from their homes.