Soccer is one of the sports that is loved by many people. However, something unsavory has hit the football
world. A match-fixing incident trampled on its purity and fairness that symbolize the spirit of sports. Let us look
at what is really going on, why it is making sports fans excited, and why we should keep remembering these
events and putting them on the surface. ......Ed
"The match-fixing scandal is deeply recognized as an event that should never have occurred, shaking not only the foundation of the K-League, which has been ongoing for 30 years but also Korean football as a whole. We will reveal attempts of match-fixing and illegal betting in the K-League and protect the honor of Korean professional football."
This is part of an apology letter released by Chung Mong-Kyu, the chairman of the KFA(Korea Football Association), in May 2011. Twelve years later, on March 28, the KFA decided to grant amnesty to 100 football players who were undergoing disciplinary action, just over an hour before the kickoff of a friendly match against Uruguay. Many people in the football industry and fans were outraged, and the issue was resolved when the amnesty was revoked after a retrial on March 31, only three days later.
So, what exactly does ‘match-fixing’ mean in sports that makes many people so angry? Match-fixing is an act that denies professional sports. Just as we can pursue a free life under the law, it is crucial in sports to perform one's skills under fair rules. So, what do people think? ST conducted a survey of 28 people on their perceptions of sports. The majority of respondents, about 85.7%, said that the essence of sports is purity and fairness, followed by peace and harmony, the will to win and compete, honor, and economic benefits. What we should pay attention to is that before supporting the victory of a team that practices the Olympic spirit of peace and harmony or before pursuing the achievements of individual players or the revitalization of the sports industry, what should be the basis is the purity and fairness based on the spirit of sports.
Looking at the statement issued by the KFA explaining the background of the amnesty decision, it states that the decision was made for the unification of the football industry at a time when a new start is being made to congratulate the 10 consecutive FIFA World Cup qualifications and the 16th round of the 2022 Qatar World Cup. Even if we congratulate the brilliant achievements and promise the future of Korean soccer, it is not enough, but we have become what we call our ‘taking care of one's own family’ and it remains a big stain in the Korean soccer world. In the end, the seniors, who should be exemplary in the Korean soccer world, ruined the achievements that junior soccer players worked hard to achieve results.
As a result, the decision for the resignation of the vice president, board members, and the chairman has been made, but it left an indelible scar on all those who love soccer. While improvements such as the system of youth player development and expansion of friendly matches will undoubtedly be necessary when discussing ways for Korean soccer to advance, we all need to reconsider what should be the foundation for the proper development of Korean soccer.
Yoo Tae-Yeon(ST Cub-Reporter)