Suwon Samsung’s ‘scary youngster’ Kim Joo-chan (19) is evolving at an incredible pace.
The fact that he came on as a substitute 14 minutes into the second half of the Suwon derby against Suwon FC (Round 36 of the Hana OneQ K League 2023) at Suwon Sports Complex on Wednesday and scored the game-winning goal in the 33rd minute to make it 3-2 just 19 minutes later is evidence of his evolution. Kim picked up a ball floated over the defense by 2-meter striker Mulicic, found himself one-on-one with opposing goalkeeper Park Bae-jong, and couldn’t have been more calm with a right-footed shot to split the goal. Acting Suwon head coach Yeom Ki-hoon marveled at the “confidence and determination of a 19-year-old player.”
Kim joined Suwon in 2004 and was considered a “22-year-old resource” at the start of the season, but after scoring his debut goal at home against Ulsan in July, he quickly established himself as one of the team’s best problem solvers. After scoring back-to-back goals against Gangwon immediately following the Ulsan game, Kim scored his fifth goal of the day against Pohang in Round 33 and Daejeon Hana in Round 35. Since his debut, 보스토토 no other player has scored more goals for Suwon than Kim Joo-chan.
His goal purity is also high. Against Ulsan (3-1), he scored a wedge goal to end a nine-match winless streak, and against Gangwon (2-1), he scored an early goal to lead the team to its first consecutive win. Against Pohang (1-0), he scored the only goal of the game to help the team end a five-game losing streak. Kim almost used the ‘goal = win’ formula this season. In the last match against Daejeon Hana, he scored the first goal to give his team the lead, but conceded back-to-back goals in the second half to draw 2-2. In the five games in which Kim scored, the team won four, drew one, and earned 13 points. That’s about 45% of their total points (29).
A true “victory bluebird,” Kim Joo-chan has the scent of the 2021 Sang-bin and 2022 Oh Hyun-gyu. In his professional debut year in 2021, he exploded for six goals and two assists and became a “sensation.” Oh “Gunpil” Hyun-gyu (Celtic) scored a total of 14 goals last season, including in the promotion playoffs, to help his team stay up. Kim Joo-chan, unlike Oh, is not from Matango, the club’s affiliate, but like the two Suwon seniors, he has taken on the role of youth leader. Sitting in the automatic relegation zone, Suwon trails 10th-ranked Suwon FC and 11th-ranked Gangwon by three points and two points, respectively, with two games remaining in the promotion playoffs. Suwon will rest their hopes on the toes of their ‘fearless youngest’ in their remaining two games against Seoul and Gangwon, and Kim is willing to shoulder the burden.
“‘Don’t try to do well, just look at this one game and play harder and until the end,'” he said.