Jeonbuk Hyundai officially raised an objection to the substitution incident against the Pohang Steelers.
Jeonbuk issued a press release on the 29th saying, ‘Regarding the match against Pohang in the 35th round of K-League 1 held on the 28th, Jeonbuk raised an objection in accordance with Article 33, Paragraph 2 of the Federation Competition Regulations, and pursuant to the same regulation, 1) Pohang’s 0-3 forfeit loss Processing and 2) official objection requesting post-expulsion disciplinary action against players Kim In-seong and Shin Kwang-hoon have been received. The game ended 1-1. If Jeonbuk’s claim is accepted, the result will be a 3-0 Jeonbuk victory.도메인
The case is like this. In the 26th minute of the first half, Pohang ‘17’ Shin Gwang-hoon prepared to be substituted. It was expected that he would be replaced by ‘No. 3’ Kim Yong-hwan, who injured his knee after being pushed by Jeonbuk’s Kim Jin-su. Kim Yong-hwan, who was injured, received brief treatment from the medical staff behind the Pohang goalpost and then retired to the bench, and Shin Kwang-hoon was brought in.
The game, which went on without any problems, was suddenly stopped after about 5 minutes. Referee Kim Young-soo headed toward the bench when the second referee called. Referee Kim had a conversation with Pohang coach Kim Ki-dong. Immediately after that, ‘No. 7’ Kim In-seong was ordered to be replaced. Kim In-seong slowly retreated to the bench with a dark expression.
Pohang used two replacement cards in 32 minutes. The curiosity was soon resolved. In the 26th minute, it was confirmed that it was written that ‘No. 7’ and ‘No. 17’ would be replaced, not ‘No. 3’ and ‘No. 17’. In other words, according to the replacement plan, Kim In-seong should have been replaced with Shin Kwang-hoon. However, at the time, no one was aware of this fact, including the Pohang staff, who had mistaken number 3 as number 7, and the referee, who should have checked whether Kim In-seong was substituted or not.
Of course, Kim Yong-hwan was out of the stadium due to injury, so there were not 12 people in the stadium. However, as he was officially marked as being replaced by Kim Seung-dae in the 32nd minute, Kim In-seong, an ‘unofficial player’, was on the pitch for nearly 6 minutes, which means that 12 Pohang players were on the pitch as recorded. This fact became known when he complained to the game supervisor or second referee that ‘No. 7 was not replaced.’
Article 20, Paragraph 2 of the K League regulations states, ‘If an ineligible player’s participation in an official game is discovered during or after the game and an objection is raised by the opposing club within 48 hours after the end of the game, the club in which the ineligible player played will be awarded 0 points. It is considered a loss by 3. However, if an ineligible player is discovered to be playing during the game, the player will be expelled and the game will continue.’
In April 2022, a similar situation occurred in the German Bundesliga. In the 28th round of the Bundesliga between Bayern Munich and Freiburg, Munich Kingsley Coman, who was supposed to be substituted, remained on the ground for about 17 seconds, causing controversy. Freiburg filed a formal complaint after the game, claiming that Munich played with 12 players, but the German Football Association did not impose disciplinary action because it judged that the referee, not the Munich club, was responsible for sending out an ineligible player.
In the K-League, in the 2021 match between Gwangju and Jeju, Gwangju suffered a 0-3 forfeit in a 1-1 draw due to violating the number of substitutions. At that time, Gwangju tried to replace two players at once, but the second referee stopped them, saying, ‘You can replace one more person later.’ However, the federation declared the game a forfeit, saying, “The team participating in the game is responsible for complying with the game regulations even if the first referee makes a mistake.”
First of all, this situation originated from an obvious mistake in Pohang. The replacement application form delivered to the standby umpire had exactly ‘No. 7 Kim In-seong’ written on it. Coach Kim Ki-dong also said after the game, “Kim Yong-hwan should have been out, but when we checked, I think we checked Kim In-seong at number 7. And Shin Kwang-hoon came in.”
However, the referee’s response was also disappointing. Coach Kim said, “A player cannot enter the stadium as we intended. If he enters before another player comes out, he is warned. Why would that be? It is the referee’s authority,” and added, “I think the referee or the second referee should have checked unconditionally.” He emphasized that it was a communication issue with the referee. On this day, the referee mistakenly missed two opportunities to correct the situation.
First, Jeonbuk officially raised the issue. The issue is whether Kim In-seong is ‘unqualified’ or not. According to the K-League regulations, an ineligible player refers to any player who is ineligible to participate in the game at the time of violation, such as being suspended from play due to non-registration, accumulating warnings, or being sent off, being disciplined by the reward and punishment committee, or violating regulations restricting foreign participation. Jeonbuk said, “According to the regulations on player substitution procedures in Article 3, Paragraph 3 of IFAB Game Rules 22/23 published by the Korea Football Association, Kim In-seong and Shin Kwang-hoon are deemed to have participated in the game as players who were not ‘qualified to participate in the game.’ “Based on the above, the Jeonbuk club forfeited the game to Pohang 0-3 for participating in the game as an ‘unqualified player’ in accordance with Article 33, Paragraphs 2 and 4 of the Professional Football League’s game regulations. “I request that the card be processed,” he said. “Also, according to Article 33, Paragraph 2 of the game regulations, if an ineligible player is discovered to have participated during the game, the game should be continued but the player in question should have been ‘expulsed’, but we also raise an objection to the fact that no such action was taken.” He said.
Jeonbuk said, “This is an issue that cannot be taken lightly as the player replacement procedure, which is the most basic and important principle in the game rules and regulations, is incorrect, and an accurate decision is necessary for the status of the K-League. We hope for a wise decision by the Professional Football Federation.” “he said. The federation said, “I think we need to hear everything from the Pohang team, the team leader, etc.”