Hwang Ui-jo joins K League 1 club FC Seoul

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Hwang Ui-jo joins K League 1 club FC Seoul

Hwang Ui-jo poses in an FC Seoul shirt in an image released by the club on Sunday.  [YONHAP]

Hwang Ui-jo poses in an FC Seoul shirt in an image released by the club on Sunday. [YONHAP]

Hwang Ui-jo has joined FC Seoul, the club announced Sunday, returning to play in the K League for the first time since 2017.
The details of the deal were not disclosed, but Hwang is thought to be in Seoul on a six-month loan from Premier League club Nottingham Forest, where he remains under contract.
Hwang had been on loan to Greek side Olympiacos, but the deal ended at midnight on Monday. Hwang is ineligible to play for Nottingham or any other European team this season under FIFA rules because he has already appeared for two clubs.
However, by moving to a team playing in a league that does not follow a concurrent schedule to the Greek or French leagues, Hwang is eligible to play. Forest reportedly fielded offers from a number of Major League Soccer clubs before accepting the FC Seoul deal.
Hwang, a Korean national team starter that has slipped from Ligue 1 star to Greek Super League reject in less than a year, has seen things go from bad to worse since he was shipped off to Greece last summer.
After making a slow start to his career with Olympiacos, where he was on loan from Forest, Hwang was entirely excluded from the squad for the last nine Super League games, and has only played more than 11 minutes in three league matches this season.
In the Europa League he saw more success, appearing in every game this season until Olympiacos was knocked out in November.
Hwang failed to score a single goal in all competitions and has just one assist in a league game on Sept. 3, 2022.
Hwang’s performance in Greece and at the 2022 Qatar World Cup, where he was off his game from the first match, cast a long shadow over what has otherwise been a successful career.
Moving back to the K League, where he scored 39 goals for Seongnam between 2013 and 2017, Hwang will be looking to recuperate and hopefully prove to Forest that he still has more to offer in Europe.
Outside of the Olympiacos performance this year, Hwang had very successful spells with Gamba Osaka in the J League, scoring 23 goals between 2017 and 2019, and with Bordeaux in the French Ligue 1, scoring 29 goals between 2019 and 2022.
Hwang has a few weeks to get used to his return to Korea before things kick off in the K League, with the opening game scheduled at the end of this month.

BY JIM BULLEY [jim.bulley@joongang.co.kr]
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