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K League to discuss fate of police football club next week

All Headlines 16:51 October 29, 2018

SEOUL, Oct. 29 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's pro football league will determine the fate of a police club that is on the verge of disbandment next week, an official said Monday.

The K League official said that a board meeting will be held Nov. 5 to discuss the issues surrounding Asan Mugunghwa FC in the second-tier K League 2.

The National Police Agency has confirmed that there will be no player recruitment for the next season.

Mugunghwa was founded in 1996 with the purpose of helping footballers stay in the game while fulfilling their mandatory military duties. The players who join Mugunghwa are members of the auxiliary police completing their national duty as police officers after finishing basic military training.

In order to compete in the K League, a team must have at least 20 players. But without new recruiting, Mugunghwa will fall short of that number. They currently have 26 players on the roster, but 12 of them will be discharged in February.

This undated photo provided by the K League shows Asan Mugunghwa FC players. (Yonhap)

Mugunghwa won the K League 2 title on Saturday after they beat Seoul E-Land 4-0. The winners of the K League 2 are directly promoted to the first division, but without a recruitment plan, the league office is likely to deny Mugunghwa's promotion to the K League 1.

If Mugunghwa can't come up with a plan by Nov. 11, the final day of the K League 2 campaign, the league office is expected to allow the K League 2 runners-up to earn promotion instead.

Originally, the runners-up needed to go through playoffs to gain promotion. The second-placed team in the K League 2 will first have to face the winners of the third and fourth place playoff and then take on the 11th-ranked team in the K League 1 for promotion.

Seongnam FC are currently in second place with 59 points and two matches remaining. They are followed by No. 3 Busan IPark with 55 points.

kdon@yna.co.kr
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