Pohang Steelers – What you need to know

Find out more about the Reds’ 2012 AFC Champions League Match Day 3 opponents – K-League powerhouse, the Pohang Steelers.

Find out more about the Reds- 2012 AFC Champions League Match Day 3 opponents - K-League powerhouse, the Pohang Steelers.

Out of the three opponents in the Reds- group, Pohang is the one that Adelaide United has the most history with in terms of the number of times they have met, the clubs having faced off in both the 2008 and 2010 ACL Group Stage. Now up against the Steelers in the ACL for the third time, here is a quick rundown on the Pohang Steelers in 2012.

Where is it? The city of Pohang is located on the eastern side of South Korea along the East Sea in the North Gyeongsang Province. It is approximately 150km from the capital, Seoul. Pohang-s population is approximately 520,000 which is part of South Korea-s estimated population of over 48 million. Pohang is 30 minutes behind Australian Central Standard Time (ACST). Eg. 8pm in Pohang = 8.30pm ACDT

The Club The Pohang Steelers are a South Korean club that plays in the K-League. Founded as an industrial team in 1973 before becoming a professional club in 1984, Pohang competed in the AFC champions League for the first time in 2008 and their first match was against…that-s right you guessed it - Adelaide United.

An extremely proud club boasting a 38 year history, the Pohang Steelers have been a breeding ground for a number of Korean football stars and provided a host of national players. The club has undergone two name changes since its inception, going from the Dolphins to the Atoms in 1985 before becoming the Steelers in 1997.

With a massive emphasis on youth and player development, Pohang was the first Korean city to build a football purposed built stadium in the country (1990) and they pride themselves on being one of the leaders in the development of Korean football.

A club that has no shortage of financial backing, the Pohang Steelers loom as an extremely tough opponent for Adelaide United (in saying that, every team in the AFC Champions league will be tough).

From the high standard of their website and emphasis on communicating their passion for football, together with the lengths they will go to in signing high-class players, the Pohang Steelers do not compete in the AFC Champions League competition just to make up the numbers.

Major Honours AFC Champions League Winners (2009) Asian Cup Champions (1997, 1998) K-League Champions (1986, 1988, 1992, 2007) FA Cup Winners (1996, 2008) Adidas Cup Winners (1993) Korea Professional Football Championship (1982, 1988) The first team to score 1,000 goals in the K-league Korea Football Grand Festival Winners 1986 Korean League Winners 1982

The Stadium The Pohang Steelyard, which was the first football-only purpose built stadium in Korea. The stadium has a seating capacity of 25,000, and murmurs are that it is exceptional viewing for football (similar to Hindmarsh Stadium).

Past history with Adelaide United In Adelaide United-s four AFC Champions League campaigns, the Reds have been pitted with the Steelers three times and as impressive as it is notable, are yet to lose to the K-League giants.

In the sides- opening encounter on Match Day 1 of 2008, the Reds stunned Pohang 2-0 at the Steelyard thanks to goals from Robert Cornthwaite and Bruce Djite. United went on to make it a double over Pohang that year as a Diego Walsh goal gave the Reds a 1-0 win in the return fixture.

Two years later the Reds opened their 2010 campaign with a 1-0 win at Hindmarsh, Mathew Leckie scoring the winner, before the teams fought out a scoreless draw at the Steelyard in Match Day 5. Not a bad record for a Hyundai A-League team against one of East Asia-s most decorated clubs.

AFC Champions League record Pohang will be competing in their fourth AFC Champions League campaign in the space of five years. They missed out last year but prior to that, they reached the Quarter Finals in 2010 but won the title in 2009 after failing to get past the Group Stage in their first attempt in 2008. Their 2-1 win over Al Ittihad of Saudi Arabia in the 2009 Final saw them make history as the first team to be crowned Asian champions three times.

Pohang-s biggest victory in the competition came when they smashed the Newcastle Jets 6-0 at home in 2009, while their heaviest defeat at home is 2-0, which came against the Reds in 2008 and interestingly Bunyodkor in the last match day less than a fortnight ago. Overall, they have played 30 games for 15 wins, 7 draws and 8 losses, while it also relevant to mention they finished an impressive third in the 2009 FIFA Club World Cup.

Lead up to Match Day 3 Goals by Kim Tae-su, Zoran Rendulic and Derek Asamoah saw the Korean side cruise to a comfortable 3-0 win over Gamba in Math Day 1, but it was a different story in Match Day 2 as they suffered a 2-0 home loss to Bunyodkor. Since that defeat, Pohang returned to winning ways with a 2-1 away win over Sangju Sangmu.

The Coach Hwang Sun-hong spent six seasons as a striker with the Pohang Steelers in the 1990s, winning a pair of Asian Club Championship titles in 1997 and 1998. Following his retirement in 2003, he began coaching at Chunnam Dragons and took up his first head coaching position at Busan I-Park in 2007. The 43-year-old did not have a significant impact during his three seasons there but he has improved the fortunes of Pohang since taking charge last year. (information courtesy of the AFC)

The Squad 1.SHIN HWA-YONG (GK, KOR), 2.PARK HEE-CHUL (MF, KOR), 3.KIM KWANG-SUK (DF, KOR), 5.LEE WON-JAE (DF, KOR), 6.SHIN JIN-HO (MF, KOR), 7.ZORAN RENDULIC (DF, SRB), 8.HWANG JIN-SUNG (MF, KOR), 9.HWANG JI-SOO (MF, KOR), 10.DEREK ASAMOAH (FW, GHA), 11.PARK SUNG-HO (FW, KOR), 12.HWANG GYO-CHOONG (GK, KOR), 13.KIM WON-IL (DF, KOR), 14.KIM TAE-SU (MF, KOR), 15.JUNG HONG-YOUN (DF, KOR), 16.KIM JIN-RYONG (FW, KOR), 17.SHIN KWANG-HOON (DF, KOR), 18.GO MOO-YUL (FW, KOR), 19.KIM SUN-WOO (FW, KOR), 20.SHIN HYUNG-MIN (MF, KOR), 22.NO BYUNG-JUN (FW, KOR), 23.YOON JUN-SUNG (DF, KOR), 24.KIM DAE-HO (MF, KOR), 26.CHO CHAN-HO (FW, KOR), 27.IANIS ZICU (FW, ROM), 28.AN IL-JOO (DF, KOR), 29.LEE MYUNG-JOO (MF, KOR), 30.KIM CHAN-HEUI (FW, KOR), 31.KIM DA-SOL (GK, KOR), 34.YOON WEON-IL (MF, KOR), 36.MOON CHANG-JIN (MF, KOR)

Certain sections of this information is courtesy of the AFC.

For more, check out Pohang-s official website at http://www.steelers.co.kr/.