Breaking news today reporting the possibility of the arrival of the first ever Asian player to play for the Might Magpies. Since the hundreds of years Toon history, we never ever have had any Asian lad wearing the sacred Black-and-White shirt. As an Asian Toon supporter I was hoping that this is not just a rumour.
The Korea Times write on their sports news column today that South Korean International striker Cho Jae-jin has flew to Tyneside on Thursday to take a physical test with Newcastle United. If passing it, the former Shimizu S-Pulse forward will sign with the team, which possibly being announced tomorrow and he will attend United clash with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
Cho has received offers from FC Utrecht, Ajax and also have talked with four Premiership clubs, including West Ham United and Fulham, where another Korean international Seol Ki-hyeon plays. Reports suggest that he is first set his eyes to sign for the Dutch team but failed on the deal offered to him and later chose the Magpies as his new nest.
“Negotiation with a club which proposed a better deal failed, so he flew to England to complete an agreement with the club,” Cho's agent said as quoted from the Korea Times.
Cho emerged as a national star when he played for South Korea in the 2004 Olympics. He was instrumental in Korea's second half comeback against Mali. Down 3-0, between 55″ and 62″ Cho scored two consecutive goals, both assisted by Kim Dong-Jin.
Born July 9, 1981 in Paju, South Korea, the six feeth 1 inch striker has finished his contract with the J-League team Shimizu S-Pulse and he may signed on a free transfer to United.
As a striker for S-Pulse, he ended the 2006 season as Shimizu S-Pulse's top scorer, with sixteen league goals from 32 appearances. A tall striker with good jumping ability and a powerful physique, Jae-Jin poses a constant threat on set-pieces.
The only thing that could be his weakness is his unwillingness to chase after long balls which is Big Sam's favorite game plan. Nevertheless, the J-League sources told that when he does choose to move with the ball at his feet, he can demonstrate excellent acceleration and elusiveness.
He also have the ability to be in the right place to snap up loose balls in the area and finish off the play with a powerful shot, just like what Shearer mostly did. Until the fat lady sing, here's the video of Cho's goals while playing for S-Pulse and his national team.