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Asian Games hero voted S. Korea's top footballer of 2018

2018 Jakarta & Palembang 18:22 December 18, 2018

SEOUL, Dec. 18 (Yonhap) -- High-scoring forward Hwang Ui-jo has been voted South Korea's top male football player of the year, officials announced Tuesday.

The Korea Football Association (KFA) said Hwang, who helped South Korea to the gold medal at this year's Asian Games, topped the voting by the media and the KFA's election committee.

Hwang led all players at the Asian Games with nine goals in seven matches, as South Korea captured their second straight gold medal. Hwang, 26, was one of three overage players at the Asian Games, otherwise open only to players 23 or under.

In this file photo from Nov. 17, 2018, Hwang Ui-jo of South Korea celebrates his goal against Australia in a friendly match at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. (Yonhap)

The Gamba Osaka forward continued his success with the senior national team, netting three goals in six matches this year.

For his Japanese club, Hwang scored 21 goals in 34 matches in 2018.

Since 2011, national team mainstays Ki Sung-yueng and Son Heung-min had each won the award three times, with defender Kim Young-gwon winning once in 2015.

Defensive back Jang Sel-gi was voted the top female player of 2018. Jang scored 11 goals and set up seven others in 27 matches for Hyundai Steel Red Angels in the Women's K League, helping the club win their sixth consecutive championship.

Jang was also a member of South Korea's bronze medal-winning squad at the Asian Games.

The three previous winners of the award also came from the Red Angels: midfielder Cho So-hyun (2015), goalkeeper Kim Jeong-mi (2016) and midfielder Lee Min-a (2017).

Kim Hak-bum, head coach of the Asian Games championship team, was named the top men's coach of the year. The best women's coach of the year honors went to Yu Yeong-sil, who guided Daeduk University to two major national titles.

The best young player awards went to Jeon Se-jin, who had a star turn at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-19 Championship, and Cho Mi-jin, striker on the women's under-17 national team.

In this file photo from Aug. 31, 2018, Jang Sel-gi of South Korea reacts to a play against Chinese Taipei during the women's football bronze medal match at the 18th Asian Games at Gelora Sriwijaya Stadium in Palembang, Indonesia. (Yonhap)


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