Rumours have surfaced over the past few days that Newcastle United might be looking at Jong Il-Gwan, the 19 year-old North Korean striker.
As is expected, there is not a lot of information on the internet about the young lad, but he apparently is fast-becoming a household name in Asia.
He was born in October of 1992 somewhere in North Korea, and he currently plays as a striker for Rimyongsu in the DPR Korea League. And at the tender age of 19, he has already represented his country 13 times, scoring 2 goals along the way.
In November of 20120 he was named the AFC Youth Player of the Year. The teenager Jong was the star of the DPR Korea team who won the AFC U19 Championship in Zibo (2010), scoring a hat-trick as his team beat Australia 3-2 in the final – he was 17 at the time.
Due to the dubious political stance of North Korea, one is not simply able to catch a flight over to the Communist nation. Instead, we reckon that Graham Carr has scouted him during International matches, most probably against Brazil and Japan.
But he is highly regarded in his home nation, and for Newcastle to make a move like this would have huge implications on the club. Manchester United recently signed Shinji Kagawa from Borussia Dortmund to continue their Asian affiliation, in accordance with Park Ji-Sung’s imminent departure.
The Manchester club’s fanbase is huge over in Asia, and their shirt sales are boosted astronomically by their willingness to splash out on these Asian players. If Newcastle were to bring this lad in, the club would inevitably grow in popularity over there, and that is certainly a huge benefit for the ever-growing club.
This is a rumor doing the rounds on Twitter, but the news is also being reported on some web-sites. Although on paper this move seems highly unlikely, there could actually be some truth in it, with Carr and the scouting team determined to bring in some young talent to reignite the academy.
Here’s a video of the guy in action.
What do you think?