Former K-League chief is new KFA chairman

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Former K-League chief is new KFA chairman

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Chung Mong-gyu, former K-League commissioner, speaks yesterday after being elected chairman of the Korea Football Association. [YONHAP]


Chung Mong-gyu, an Oxford-educated heir of the Hyundai Group, was elected chairman of the Korea Football Association yesterday in what some see as following in the footsteps of his cousin Chung Mong-joon, honorary vice president of FIFA.

Chung won 15 of 24 votes in the runoff election against Heo Seung-pyo, former KFA vice chairman.

Chung, 51, chairman of the Hyundai Development, had served as commissioner of the K-League, the country’s top professional football league, since 2011 until he stepped down from the post early this month to run for the top post of the KFA. He also is the owner of Busan IPark, a K-League club run by Hyundai Development.

Heo, a representative for Peopleworks, a telecommunications manufacturer, got eight votes to Chung’s seven in the first four-way vote earlier the day. No one received a majority, however, and the two top vote-getters advanced to the two-way vote, according to KFA rules.

In the first voting, Kim Seok-han, chairman of the Korea Middle School Football Association who was formerly a vice chairman of the Seoul Football Association, received six votes, while Yoon Sang-hyun, a lawmaker with the ruling Saenuri Party, garnered three.

It is the second straight loss for Heo, who competed against incumbent KFA chairman Cho Chung-yun in the 2009 election. Cho, who saw a massive match-fixing scandal under his watch, said in November he wouldn’t seek a second term.

Chung is the longest-serving football club owner in Korea. He owned the Ulsan Hyundai from 1994-96 and the Jeonbuk Hyundai Dinos, predecessor of Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors, from 1997-99. He has been the owner of Busan IPark since January 2000. He is a son of Chung Se-yung, a brother of Hyundai Group founder Chung Ju-yung.

Chung Mong-joon, a son of Chung Ju-yung, was KFA chairman from 1993-2009 and FIFA vice president from 1994-2011.


By Moon Gwang-lip [joe@joongang.co.kr]

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