The nation of South Korea has interesting demography and culture. Being a country of mountainous terrain, the country has more scope for an active life. The mass population is overall active and healthy more out of habit than that of choice. This outlook has also kept the South Korean population invested in sports of various kinds. One of the most popular sports in the country is Football, usually known as Soccer in the United States.
K League: A short introduction
As said earlier, the population of South Korea is heavily interested in sports from both viewing and participating perspectives. Football being the most popular sport in the country has its own professional association league known as the K League. It has two further divisions:
- First Division: K League 1
- Second Division: K League 2
The South Korean major football leagues in the 1970s namely, the National Semi-professional Football League and the National University Football League are considered to be the earliest ancestors of the present-day K League. These Leagues were not professional. The then president of the Korean Football Association (KFA) Choi Soon-young founded a professional football league in 1979 by the name of the Korean Super League.
After many trials and tribulations of increasing popularity, it was named K League in 1998. Again, in 2013 it was further split into two divisions K League Classic and K League Challenge. In 2018, they were renamed again to the current names to avoid confusion.
The global reach of K League
K League is considered one of the oldest professional leagues in Asia. However, it had been majorly overshadowed by the Japanese League, more commonly known as the J League. Many viewers are of the opinion that as K Leagues clubs are primarily backed by corporates or locally called ‘chaebols’ with a limited budget, therefore they lack the luster needed to draw enough audiences.
However, in the year of pandemic 2020, K Leagues were one of the few tournaments that were open to provide entertainment. The regular domestic broadcasters like KBS, SBS, 토토사이트, etc. were topped by international ones from countries like the UK’s BBC, Germany’s Sportdigital Fussball, Australia’s Optus Sports, to name some.
It is speculated that almost 36 countries bought the K League media rights on the international platform. Another reason for the international broadcasting attention towards the K League is the revoking of the legal issues that hindered the broadcast during the previous years.
It is a known fact that how much the football fans are starved this year to enjoy quality football. The international broadcast of K League has provided much solace to those tortured souls this year. As the fans all over the world have been duly introduced to South Korean football, it can now be expected that the clubs would slowly get rid of corporate clutches. Therefore, they would be able to start concentrating solely on the game itself rather than some other unnecessary paraphernalia.