Thursday, 15 December 2011

Was Ju Young Park Bought For Shirt Sales?

Since Ju Young Park arrived from Monaco in August he has made less than a handful of appearances for Arsenal.

Now I understand there is always going to be a period of 'transition' for a player coming in from a different country, but at times I wonder whether Park is actually real or a figment of my imagination.

I keep seeing on the Arsenal website that Ju Young is ready for action. Well, to be honest, that news is beginning to get older than Stonehenge now.

There is no doubt that the South Korean has a good record at international level. And he is one of the most popular players in South Korea too.

So why doesn't he feature more for the Gunners? And more importantly, why did Arsenal sign him?

Of course he is lower than Flo-Rida in the pecking order at the club. Park will get more of a chance in January when Gervinho and Marouane Chamakh leave for the African Cup of Nations.

Or Perhaps Wenger doesn't actually feel that he is ready for first-team action yet despite saying that he is.

I have a more cynical view of things though. And I hope that I am wrong because Park seems a nice fella.

The reason I think Arsenal bought Ju Young Park is for shirt sales. There I said it, please don't hate me.

There is a huge market in Asia. Footballers from that area are treated with a status that even Status Quo do not receive.

Simply put, if Ju Young Park stepped a foot into South Korea he would be received like a God.

Global branding is what football clubs want these days. Arsenal are no different.

I think signing the captain of South Korea is a move the club made because most of the people there will now rush out and buy an Arsenal shirt with 'Park 9' on the back.

Its obvious that Park can play a bit. His goal in the Carling Cup against Bolton was magical. 

But I believe that the motive to sign him was a financial one for Arsenal. Pay between £3m-5m for him and the club probably earned that money back in 15 minutes.

We did the same thing in 2001 with Junichi Inamoto. Within 24 hours most Japanese people supported Arsenal.

I haven't written this to offend any body whatsoever. And to be honest, I really hope that I am wrong, that Park becomes a regular and shoves these words down my throat.

But I just get that vibe about this deal. And that is not the players fault I know.

Follow me on Twitter @_Wrighty7

Keep It Goonerish...........         


Anonymous said...

I don't believe that Wenger would buy a player he has no intention of playing.

I think he sees something in Park but the player simply isn't ready yet...

Wrighty7 said...

I hope you are right mate!

Anonymous said...

Whilst he impressed in Bolton, in all other appearances he has been woeful, very lightweight and no-where near up to the pace of the Prem. Of course he was bought for the Asian market. The guy goes to the Army in 18months! Why would anyone buy him knowing that if they didnt know they would still mnake a fat profit.

It is imperative we buy a striker in January of real quality because Park cannot cut it. Would chose Bendtner every time over him & Chamakh every time.

Anonymous said...

I'm Asian and honestly I think that was at least partly the reason. Very lucrative market, so i'm not sure it's a bad thing, but hopefully we will see him more often.

Anonymous said...

It may well have been one of the motivations but I think the main reason is that we want Joel Campbell at the club asap, if he had got his work visa I'm not so sure that Park would have even been signed. As it is, he's here for a few years as a reasonable backup (eventually, hopefully) without breaking the bank, a more clinical alternative to Chamakh up front, or I wouldn't be too surprised to see us play 4-4-2 a little more if/when RvP is out for any period of time.

Anonymous said...

I think the perception that loads of Korean people will buy Arsenal shirts because of Park is not only ridiculous but condescending. Also, 'most' Japanese fans did not support Arsenal when Inamoto joined - and they most certainly did not switch allegiances to West Brom or Fulham when he played for them. The financial impact of that deal for Arsenal was minimal. The fact is, the majority of income from foreign markets, as it is in Europe, is from TV. So Park wasn't bought for shirt sales. He was bought to play for Arsenal football club. If he isn't good enough, that's another matter but this was a very poor read - astonishingly misinformed and naive.

Anonymous said...

anon 15:59 is the one who is naive. Have Arsenal 'live' matches been bought in Korea since Park has signed? YES. Is there a permanent Korean press team in London monitoring Park at Arsenal? YES.

Get yer own facts right and get real.

Anonymous said...

Sorry mate but pointless post imho, who would do that?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 15.59, it is you who needs to inform yourself before shooting down opinions in such strong terms..Here are some FACTS...the premier league is the most watched football league in the world. I can tell you (with some authority) that one of the MAIN reasons fans from outside England and Europe support an English team is if their compatriot plays for the team. A lot of South Africans started supporting Liverpool in the days of Grobelaar and to this day, there is a large Liverpool following of a certain age. I am African, I should know. The pride that one of their own has made it in the most competitive league creates a large following. African buy jerseys with players names on the back, they support the player and team. However, most tend to stick with that team once the player has moved on..

Ncube said...

Just picked myself up off the floor laughing. "I'm African, I should know"???? Well my fellow African friend. Actually, it is you who needs to get your facts straight. Here are some pertinent facts about Bruce Grobelaar. He's from my neck of the woods - Zimbabwe (Formally called Rhodesia). Granted, he was born in Durban but of Zimbabwean parents and spent most of his african life in Zimbabwe. He is a Zimbabwean national and has 33 international caps for the Zimbabwe national football team. Actually he has a dual nationality and also hold a British passport. I hope this informs you accordingly but I'm afraid it effectively dismantles your arguement. Sorry! (but how I enjoyed that - thanks for the opportunity!!!)

Anonymous said...

Wenger bought six players and is using four - I would say that is a good return...However, I am a little concern we do have a plan B if the 1st XI do not produce..

Anonymous said...

As a korean, I can state pretty clearly that koreans do not buy shirts. sportswear in general in korea is not popular fashion.

And no korean corporation will want to sponsor a club where their guy never plays.

TV rights perhaps but again, I think they'd rather buy United where Ji Sung Park is far more likely to play.

Anonymous said...

He is the worst choice in South Korea. Pseudo-Christian forces urges him to give the opportunity to asylum. Even if you order in Korea, Arsenal's only one T-shirt for him, we would also like to buy. Game for people who do not even waste to spend money to do everything.

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