‘New Parisian’ Lee Kang-in is showing off his ability to adapt to the storm.
On the 13th (Korean time), Paris Saint-Germain released their training on the second day of the pre-season on their official website. In this video, Lee Kang-in is shown stepping over and training with his teammates. Lee Kang-in, who played stretching, passing games, and mini-games, worked hard to impress coach Luis Enrique with a serious look. The smile did not leave except for training. Lee Kang-in, who laughed and chatted with his new teammates, announced that he was quickly melting into the team.안전놀이터
At the center of him was the ‘Spanish Connection’. Lee Kang-in had many moments mainly with Carlos Soler. Soler played with Valencia in the past. He has been with me from youth to first team life. Soler joined Valencia in 2005 and Lee Kang-in in 2011. Soler has grown into Valencia’s key midfielder, and Lee Kang-in has also joined Valencia’s first team and worked together for a long time. The two broke up when Lee Kang-in left for Mallorca in 2021, but they reunited at PSG. Soler joined Paris Saint-Germain in the summer of 2022.
In addition to Soler, Lee Kang-in also talked with Manuel Ugarte. Ugarte from Uruguay wore a PSG uniform with Lee Kang-in this summer. They seem to get along easily as they have a common denominator of being Spanish as a freshman. Spanish is the official language in Uruguay. Lee Kang-in is adapting quickly as there are many other players who are fluent in Spanish, such as Juan Bernat. Above all, Enrique is from Spain.
Neymar didn’t show up at the training ground that day. However, I have already said goodbye to Lee Kang-in. On the first day of training, Lee Kang-in conducted a simple test and conducted indoor training. Before the training, simple stretching was carried out, and at this time PSG’s ace, Neymar, sat next to Lee Kang-in. Lee Kang-in and Neymar, two shots were caught.
Expectations for Lee Kang-in are growing. Lee Kang-in is being classified as PSG’s main player next season by various media. Whoscored.com, a British statistical media outlet, said, “This is a starting list that PSG can build in the first game of the 2023-2024 season. Is PSG a good enough team to win the European Champions League?’ Lee Kang-in was chosen as a midfielder for the 4-3-3 formation. Several media outlets are already predicting Lee Kang-in as the main midfielder. Lee Kang-in was predicted to form the midfield along with Manuel Ugarte and Marco Verratti. Threetop predicted Mba-Neymar-Asensio, and the four-back would be Luca Hernandez-Marquinhos-Milan Sckriniar-Ashfaf Hakimi. The goalkeeper is Gianluigi Donnarumma. On the 13th, another statistics site, Sofa Score, also predicted the same lineup.
‘Shoot Dol’ Lee Kang-in finally wore a PSG uniform. PSG said on the club’s official website on the 9th, “We are pleased to announce that we have signed a contract with Lee Kang-in until 2028. Lee Kang-in became the club’s first Korean player.” Mallorca also said on the club’s homepage, “Mallorca and PSG have agreed to the transfer of Lee Kang-in. Lee Kang-in played for Mallorca for two seasons before leaving. I hope that Lee Kang-in will be filled with luck in his new challenges in the future.”
Lee Kang-in wears number 19 at PSG. The transfer fee and annual salary have not been disclosed, but if you look at the reports so far, 22 million euros is likely. It is also known that his annual salary has also increased eightfold from the previous 500,000 euros (about 700 million won) to 4 million euros (about 5.7 billion won). Lee Kang-in became the 13th Korean player to step on the French stage following Seo Jeong-won, Lee Sang-yoon, Ahn Jung-hwan, Park Ju-young, Nam Tae-hee, Jeong Jo-guk, Kwon Chang-hoon, Hwang Ui-jo, and Yoon Il-rok.
Lee Kang-in quietly departed through Incheon International Airport the day before. After finishing his domestic schedule for about a month, Lee Kang-in quietly went to Jangdo without accompanying anyone. It was a departure for signing with PSG. As soon as Lee Kang-in arrived in Paris, he signed an autograph. Lee Kang-in said, “I am really happy to join PSG. Paris Saint-Germain is one of the biggest clubs in the world. It is a team with the best players in the world. I want to start a new adventure with PSG quickly. A day to meet the fans and have fun. I look forward to this,” he said.
PSG, which announced the appointment of Luis Enrique on the 5th, continued the official announcement of the players who had already confirmed the recruitment, as expected. The signings of Milan Skrniar, Marco Asensio and Manuel Ugarte have been announced. And finally, Lee Kang-in’s recruitment was officially announced. PSG said on the official website, ‘Lee Kang-in was born in Incheon, Korea in 2001, and in 2011 he joined the Valencia youth team in Spain and spent seven years there. Lee Kang-in, who made his professional debut in 2018, made 62 appearances and scored 3 goals in his first 3 seasons at Valencia, and moved to Mallorca in the summer of 2021 to become a key player.
Lee Kang-in also introduced himself to the fans. He said, “I am a midfielder who can play on both the right and left sides. I am capable of various positions. I am a player who can handle the ball comfortably. I have a great desire to win. I want to help the team and help the team win.” I want to contribute,” he said. Lee Kang-in continued, “I have known PSG since I was young. PSG is one of the best teams in the world. I have watched the French league for a long time. There are many talented players. My goal is always to help the team. I want to help them win and win as many championships as possible.”
Lee Kang-in’s trip to Paris Saint-Germain was decided early. On the 4th, Juanmi Sanchez of Marca, Spain, said, “Mallorca and PSG have fully agreed on Lee Kang-in’s transfer. This negotiation, which took longer than necessary, will be completed and will be made official within a few hours.” Romano also posted on his SNS on the 2nd, “All negotiators involved in Lee Kang-in’s transfer to PSG are convinced that the deal will be completed sooner or later.” All you have to do is wait for his autograph.”
The PSG news about Lee Kang-in started from Lilevo’s Matteo Moreto, who has reported on Lee Kang-in several times. On the 13th of last month, reporter Moreto said, ‘Lee Kang-in’s future lies outside Spain. It was reported that PSG is likely to be the destination. “PSG has been following Kang-in Lee’s situation for several months,” he said, “negotiations between PSG and Mallorca are going well. A personal agreement with the player has already been made. He wants to finalize the transfer with details such as bonus clauses,’ he said.
After this report, the Spanish and French media all discussed Lee Kang-in’s move to PSG. There was even a story that the medical test was completed. Requipe expressed that Lee Kang-in’s transfer to PSG was “a matter of time”. Lee Kang-in’s move to PSG, which seemed to be easily completed, was delayed due to negotiations over the transfer fee. Mallorca wanted 25 million euros, but PSG tried to recruit him at 15 million euros. There was a reason Mallorca stuck with 25 million euros. It was because of the cell-on clause. Lee Kang-in, who left Valencia and wore the Mallorca uniform without a transfer fee, inserted a condition to receive a portion of the transfer fee when transferring later. In the end, Mallorca accepted 22 million euros. Lee Kang-in got 20% of this. Mallorca only earned about 17 million euros. This amount is also the second highest transfer fee revenue in Mallorca’s history.
Lee Kang-in showed his best performance this season. He played 2840 minutes in 36 matches (33 starts) in the Spanish Primera Liga, scoring 6 goals-6 assists. He succeeded in scoring the first double-digit attack points in La Liga by a Korean player. Although he unfortunately failed to win the award, he was the first Korean to be nominated for Player of the Month and Team of the Year. Lee Kang-in recorded 90 successful dribbles this season, ranking 4th among the top 5 European leagues in dribbling success. If it is limited to La Liga, it is second only to Vinicius Junior, the ‘dribble king’. The success rate tells a different story. overwhelming number one Lionel Messi of the world is 50%, but Lee Kang-in is 68%. With Lee Kang-in’s performance, Mallorca rose to 9th place. The Mallorca media evaluated Lee Kang-in this season as ‘Mallorca’s key and irreplaceable player’ and gave him a ’10 out of 10′ rating for the season.
Lee Kang-in was courted by Aston Villa of the English Premier League, Manchester United, Newcastle, Burnley, Wolverhampton, Brighton, Real Betis of La Liga, AC Milan of Serie A and Napoli. In particular, Atletico Madrid has been connected since the January transfer window. At the time, after opposition from Mallorca, he stayed on, and as the summer approached, Atlético Madrid’s courtship intensified. However, due to the issue of the amount, a story close to a drama continued, such as interest → withdrawal → proposal → negotiation difficulties. However, after Atletico Madrid failed to negotiate with Mallorca on the 12th, reports continued that the possibility of going to Atletico was virtually 99.9% gone. After that, the destination suddenly turned to PSG.
PSG is the best club in France that needs no explanation. Since PSG was acquired by Qatar Sports Investments, a capital of Qatar’s royal family, in 2011, it has won the French first division championship nine times until last season. Superstars such as Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Achraf Hakimi, and Marco Verratti are lined up. Lee Kang-in gets to play alongside his best teammates. PSG starts the pre-season schedule from the 10th. On the 26th, we will play a friendly match in Japan with Al Nasr (Saudi Arabia) and Cerezo Osaka (Japan). On the 2nd of next month, we will face Inter Milan. PSG will play Ligue 1 opener against Lorient on August 13th.
“Lee Kang-in’s versatility is also a big advantage,” Rekif said. “Originally a winger, he is a player who can support strikers, attack midfielders, and even central midfielders.” Then, ‘Lee Kang-in joined Murcielago at the young age of 10 and drew attention as a rare precocious talent with excellent skills in his youth. No matter which coach took over at Valencia, he failed to establish himself, and was released a year before the contract expired in 2021. His first season at Mallorca was on a continuum of inconsistent and disappointing performances at Valencia, but last season was completely different.’ Requipe said, ‘Lee Kang-in, an undoubtedly outstanding midfielder, stood out for his dedication and sacrifice for the team. He added, “Lee Kang-in had the best season in terms of data, recording 6 goals and 7 assists in the league last season.”
After going through Valencia and Mallorca, Lee Kang-in finally entered a big club. Lee Kang-in said his final goodbyes to Mallorca fans in Spanish and Korean through his SNS. “Thanks to the Mallorca team and the fans. Two years ago, I arrived on the island of Mallorca with the dream of becoming a better player. And in the end, I think we all have grown with the club. I was happy and the memory of winning together will always remain a happy memory for me. The players, the team, and the fans came together to create good results, and thanks to the fans who always cheered me on at Sonmo City Stadium, I became a better player and a better person. Representing my country at the World Cup as part of the Mallorca team was a dream come true for me, and that dream was only possible thanks to the help of my teammates, coaching staff and everyone at the club. I believe that the Mallorca team will become stronger, so I will face the new challenge with a good heart. I will never forget all the days I spent here. Fighting Mallorca!”
Mallorca social media capture
After saying goodbye to the Mallorca fans, Lee Kang-in put on the uniform, conveying his strong feelings to the PSG fans as a ‘technician’. Lee Kang-in’s technique could be the best in France. In particular, he seems to form the best match with coach Enrique, who advocates attacking and technical football. As coach Enrique was involved in the recruitment process even before taking office, it would not make sense to say that he picked Lee Kang-in himself. Now that Lionel Messi has left, the French media is evaluating Lee Kang-in as Messi’s successor. The presence of a director who can speak the language can be a great help to Lee Kang-in. He has a good chance of succeeding at PSG in many ways. Lee Kang-in has opened a new curtain in his new soccer career. He has been adapting to the storm so far and is quickly melting into the team.
PSG starts their pre-season tour. It is an itinerary between Japan and Korea. Saudi Arabia’s Al Nasr, played by Cristiano Ronaldo, will play in Osaka on the 25th and against Cerezo Osaka on the 28th. Afterwards, he will face Inter Milan, the runner-up in the European Champions League, in Tokyo on August 1, before returning to Korea. On August 3rd, we will play a friendly match against Jeonbuk Hyundai. Making his debut in Japan, Lee Kang-in was greeted with his new team in front of Korean fans.