HOME
The Info List - K-League


--- Advertisement ---



K League
K League
(Hangul: K리그) (Korea Professional Football League) is South Korea's professional association football league including the first division K League 1 and the second division K League
K League
2.[1][2]

Contents

1 History 2 Structure 3 Clubs

3.1 Current K League
K League
Clubs 3.2 All-time K League
K League
Clubs

4 Champions 5 Records and statistics

5.1 Appearances 5.2 Clean sheets 5.3 Goals 5.4 Assists

6 Foreign players 7 Franchise system

7.1 Franchise relocations

8 K League
K League
Awards 9 Sponsorship 10 References 11 External links

History[edit] The K League
K League
Classic was founded in 1983 as the Korean Super League, with five member clubs. The initial five clubs were Hallelujah FC, Yukong Elephants, POSCO
POSCO
Dolphins, Daewoo
Daewoo
Royals, and Kookmin Bank
Kookmin Bank
FC. Hallelujah FC won the inaugural title, finishing one point ahead of Daewoo
Daewoo
Royals to lift the crown. In 1998, Korea's football league was reformed and renamed the K League ( K League
K League
was official orthography by 2012). Since its creation, the league has expanded from an initial 5 to 16 clubs. Of the five inaugural clubs, only Yukong Elephants, POSCO
POSCO
Dolphins, and Daewoo Royals remains in the K League; Kookmin Bank FC
Kookmin Bank FC
dropped out of the league at the end of 1984, and Hallelujah FC followed the season after. In 2013, K League
K League
introduced the division system. The first division's name was K League
K League
Classic, the second division's name was K League Challenge and the comprehensive brand name was K League. The fact that both the first and second divisions had very similar names has caused some degree of confusion and controversy.[3] Beginning with the 2018 season, the first division was renamed to K League 1 and the second division to K League
K League
2. Structure[edit] Below the K League 1 is the K League
K League
2, and below the K League 2 is the National League, a closed semi-professional league established in 2003. The fourth level of football in South Korea
South Korea
is the K3 League. There was no official system of promotion and relegation. However, beginning in 2013, the champions of K League 2 are eligible for promotion to the K League
K League
1, provided that they meet certain criteria. Clubs[edit] Current K League
K League
Clubs[edit]

First Division – K League
K League
1 – 12 clubs Second Division – K League
K League
2 – 10 clubs

All-time K League
K League
Clubs[edit] As of 2017, There have been a total of 31 member clubs in the history of the K League – those clubs are listed below with their current names (where applicable):

K League's principle of official statistics is that final club succeeds to predecessor club's history & records. Clubs in italic no longer exist.

Club (duration) Owner(s) Sponsor(s) Notes

POSCO
POSCO
FC (1973–1983) POSCO
POSCO
Dolphins (1983–1984) POSCO
POSCO
Atoms (1985–1994) Pohang
Pohang
Atoms (1995–1996) Pohang Steelers
Pohang Steelers
(1997–present) POSCO

Founded as a Semi-Professional FC on April 1973 Transferred into a Professional FC on February 1984

Hallelujah FC (1983–1985) defunct Shindongah Group

Inauguration date – 20 December 1980

Yukong Elephants (1983–1995) Puchon Yukong (1996–1997.09) Puchon SK (1997.10–2000) Bucheon
Bucheon
SK (2001–2005) Jeju United
Jeju United
(2006–present) SK Energy[1] in SK Group

Inauguration date – 17 December 1982

Saehan Motors FC (1979–1980) Daewoo
Daewoo
FC (1980–1983) Daewoo
Daewoo
Royals (1983–1995) Pusan Daewoo
Daewoo
Royals (1996–1999) Pusan i.cons (2000–2002.07) Pusan I'Cons (2002.07–2004) Busan I'Park
Busan I'Park
(2005–2011) Busan IPark
Busan IPark
(2012–present) defunct Daewoo
Daewoo
Group (1983–1999) Hyundai Development Company
Hyundai Development Company
(2000–present)

Founded as a Semi-Professional FC on 22 November 1979 Refounded as a Professional FC Inauguration date – 3 December 1983

Kookmin Bank FC
Kookmin Bank FC
(1983–1984) Kookmin Bank

Played as a Semi-Professional FC

Hyundai
Hyundai
Horang-i (1984–1995) Ulsan
Ulsan
Hyundai
Hyundai
Horang-i (1996–1998) Ulsan
Ulsan
Hyundai
Hyundai
Horangi (1999–2007) Ulsan
Ulsan
Hyundai
Hyundai
(2008–present) Hyundai Motor Company
Hyundai Motor Company
in Hyundai Group
Hyundai Group
(1984–1997) Hyundai Heavy Industries
Hyundai Heavy Industries
in Hyundai Heavy Industries
Hyundai Heavy Industries
Group (1998–present)

Inauguration date – 6 December 1983

Lucky-Goldstar Hwangso (1984–1990) LG Cheetahs (1991–1995) Anyang
Anyang
LG Cheetahs (1996–2003) FC Seoul
FC Seoul
(2004–present) LG Group
LG Group
(1984–2004) GS Group[2] (2004.06–present) 0 0

Inauguration date – 22 December 1983 0 0 0

Hanil Bank FC (1984–1986) Hanil Bank[3]

Played as a Semi-Professional FC

Ilhwa Chunma (1989–1995) Cheonan
Cheonan
Ilhwa Chunma (1996–1999) Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma
Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma
(2000–2013) Seongnam FC
Seongnam FC
(2014–present) Ilhwa in Tongil Group (1989–2013) Government of Seongnam
Seongnam
and Citizen Stockholder (2014–present)

Inauguration date – 18 March 1989

Chonbuk Buffalo
Chonbuk Buffalo
(1994)

Bobae Soju (1994) Inauguration date – 1993 Dissolution date – 1994

Chonbuk Dinos (1995–1996) Chonbuk Hyundai
Hyundai
Dinos (1997–1999) Chonbuk Hyundai Motors
Chonbuk Hyundai Motors
(2000–2005) Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors
(2006–present) Consortium of Hyunyang and Hyundai Motor Company
Hyundai Motor Company
in Hyundai
Hyundai
Group (1995–1999.05) Hyundai Motor Company
Hyundai Motor Company
in Hyundai Motor Group
Hyundai Motor Group
(1999.05–present)

Inauguration date – 12 December 1994

Chunnam Dragons
Chunnam Dragons
(1995–2013) Jeonnam Dragons
Jeonnam Dragons
(2014–present) POSCO

Inauguration date – 16 December 1994

Suwon Samsung Bluewings
Suwon Samsung Bluewings
(1996–present) Samsung Electronics
Samsung Electronics
in Samsung Group
Samsung Group
(1996–2014) Cheil Worldwide
Cheil Worldwide
in Samsung Group
Samsung Group
(2014–present) Samsung Electronics Inauguration date – 15 December 1995

Taejon Citizen (1997–2002) Daejeon
Daejeon
Citizen (2003–present) Consortium of defunct Dong Ah Group, Kyeryong Construction Company, Dongyang Department Store, Chungchong Bank (1997–2005) Government of Daejeon
Daejeon
and Citizen Stockholder (2006–present) Hana Bank Inauguration date – 12 March 1997

Daegu FC
Daegu FC
(2003–present) Government of Daegu
Daegu
and Citizen Stockholder Daegu
Daegu
Bank Inauguration date – 19 March 2003

Incheon
Incheon
United (2004–present) Government of Incheon
Incheon
and Citizen Stockholder Shinhan Bank Incheon
Incheon
International Airport Inauguration date – 1 March 2004

Gyeongnam FC
Gyeongnam FC
(2006–present) Government of Gyeongsangnam-do
Gyeongsangnam-do
and Citizen Stockholder DSME Gyeongnam
Gyeongnam
Bank Inauguration date – 17 January 2006

Gangwon FC
Gangwon FC
(2009–present) Government of Gangwon-do and Citizen Stockholder High1 Resort Inauguration date – 18 December 2008

Gwangju FC
Gwangju FC
(2011–present) Government of Gwangju
Gwangju
and Citizen Stockholder Gwangju
Gwangju
Bank Inauguration date – 16 December 2010

Sangmu FC (1985) Gwangju
Gwangju
Sangmu (2003–2010) Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu Phoenix (2011–2012) Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu (2013–present) 0 0 0 Korea Armed Forces Athletic Corps
Korea Armed Forces Athletic Corps
(1985) Government of Gwangju
Gwangju
and Korea Armed Forces Athletic Corps (2003–2010) Government of Sangju
Sangju
and Korea Armed Forces Athletic Corps (2011–present) 0 0 0 0

Founded as a Military FC (Semi-Professional) on 11 January 1984 Joined K League
K League
in 1985 Inauguration date – 4 January 2013 ( Gwangju
Gwangju
Sangmu) Inauguration date – 26 February 2011 ( Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu) ※ Sangmu, Gwangju
Gwangju
Sangmu and Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu, these clubs are separate legal entities by K League, not succeed the history and records

Police FC (2013) Ansan Police FC
Ansan Police FC
(2014–2015) Ansan
Ansan
Mugunghwa (2016) Asan
Asan
Mugunghwa (2017–present) 0 0 Mugunghwa Athletic Club in Korean National Police University
Korean National Police University
(2013) Government of Ansan
Ansan
and Mugunghwa Athletic Club in Korean National Police University (2014–2016) Government of Asan
Asan
and Mugunghwa Athletic Club in Korean National Police University (2017–present) 0

Founded as a Police FC (Semi-Professional) on 29 March 1996 Transferred into a Professional FC and joined K League Challenge in 2013 Inauguration date – 16 March 2014 ( Ansan
Ansan
Mugunghwa) Inauguration date – 16 January 2017 ( Asan
Asan
Mugunghwa) 0※ Ansan
Ansan
Police and Asan
Asan
Police, these clubs are separate legal entities by K League, not succeed the history and records

Goyang Hi FC
Goyang Hi FC
(2013–2016)

Founded as a Semi-Professional FC in 1999 Transferred into a Professional FC and joined K League Challenge in 2013 Transferred into an Amateur FC and left K League Challenge in the end of 2016

Chungju Hummel (2013–2016) Hummel Korea

Founded as a Semi-Professional FC 9 December 1999 Transferred into a Professional FC and joined K League Challenge in 2013

Suwon FC
Suwon FC
(2013–present) Government of Suwon
Suwon
and Citizen Stockholder

Founded as a Semi-Professional FC 15 March 2003 Transferred into a Professional FC in 2013 Joined K League
K League
Challenge

Bucheon FC 1995
Bucheon FC 1995
(2013–present) Government of Bucheon
Bucheon
and Citizen Stockholder

Founded as Amateur FC on 1 December 2007 Transferred into a Professional FC and joined K League Challenge in 2013

FC Anyang
FC Anyang
(2013–present) Government of Anyang
Anyang
and Citizen Stockholder

Inauguration date – 2 February 2013 Joined K League Challenge in 2013

Seoul E-Land FC
Seoul E-Land FC
(2015–present) E-Land Group

Inauguration date – 22 August 2014 Joined K League Challenge in 2015

Ansan
Ansan
Greeners FC (2017–present) Government of Ansan
Ansan
and Citizen Stockholder

Inauguration date – 21 February 2017 Joined K League Challenge in 2017

[1] Yukong renamed to SK Energy [2] GS Group
GS Group
is separated from LG Group [3] Hanil Bank is merged by Woori Bank Champions[edit]

For details on K League
K League
Champions, see List of South Korean football champions. Seongnam FC
Seongnam FC
are the most successful club in terms of championship victories, having lifted the title on seven occasions.

Records and statistics[edit] For details, see K League
K League
records and statistics.

Records include K League 1 (top division), K League 2 (second division), and League Cup. All statistics are correct as of end of the 2017 season. Bold denotes players still playing in the K League.

Appearances[edit]

Rank Player Appearances Notes

1 Kim Byung-ji 706

2 Choi Eun-sung 532

3 Kim Gi-dong 501

4 Lee Dong-gook 469

5 Kim Sang-sik 458

6 Oh Seung-bum 446 [a]

Kim Yong-dae

8 Kim Eun-jung 444 [a]

9 Woo Sung-yong 439

10 Hyun Young-min 437

Clean sheets[edit]

Rank Player Clean sheets Matches Clean sheets per match Notes

1 Kim Byung-ji 229 706 0.32

2 Choi Eun-sung 152 532 0.29

3 Lee Woon-jae 140 410 0.34

4 Kim Young-kwang 132 425 0.31 [a]

5 Kim Yong-dae 132 446 0.30

6 Valeri Sarychev 114 320 0.36

7 Jung Sung-ryong 108 296 0.36

8 Shin Hwa-yong 107 320 0.33

9 Kwoun Sun-tae 90 301 0.30

10 Kim Ho-jun 84 271 0.31 [a]

Goals[edit]

Rank Player Goals Matches Goals per match Notes

1 Lee Dong-gook 202 469 0.43

2 Dejan Damjanović 173 303 0.57

3 Kim Eun-jung 123 444 0.28 [a]

4 Woo Sung-yong 116 439 0.26

5 Kim Do-hoon 114 257 0.44

6 Kim Shin-wook 112 300 0.37

7 Jung Jo-gook 111 324 0.34

8 Kim Hyun-seok 110 371 0.30

9 Saša Drakulić 104 271 0.38

10 Yoon Sang-chul 101 300 0.34

Assists[edit]

Rank Player Assists Matches Assists per match Notes

1 Yeom Ki-hun 99 311 0.32 [a]

2 Lee Dong-gook 71 469 0.15

3 Mauricio Molina 69 209 0.33

4 Shin Tae-yong 68 401 0.17

5 Eninho 66 231 0.29

6 Hwang Jin-sung 65 322 0.20

7 Denis Laktionov 59 272 0.22

8 Kim Eun-jung 56 444 0.13 [a]

9 Hyun Young-min 55 437 0.13

10 Kim Hyun-seok 54 371 0.15

^ a b c d e f g Including K League Challenge appearances (second division)

Foreign players[edit] See also: List of foreign K League
K League
players

Season Squad Play in match Notes

1983–1993 2 2

1994 3 2 If three players chosen to South Korea
South Korea
in one club, three foreign players can play.

1995 3 3

1996–2000 5 3 From 1997 season, foreign goalkeepers were restricted in play the match. * 1997 season : Two-third of all matches * 1998 season : one-third of all matches * From 1999 season : foreign goalkeepers were restricted in K League

2001–2002 7 3 Temporary operation due to support the World Cup.

2003–2004 5 3

2005 4 3

2006–2008 3 3

2009– 3+1 3+1 '+1' is Asian quota.

At the inception of the K League
K League
in 1983, only two Brazilian players made rosters. At the time, rules allowed each club to have three foreign players and that the three could also play simultaneously in a game. From the 1996 season, each team had five foreign players among whom three could play in a game at the same time. Moreover, from the 2000 season to the 2002 season, the limit on foreign players was expanded seven but only three could play in a game at the same time. The limit was lower to five in 2003, four in 2005, and three in 2007. From the 2009 season, the number of foreign players went back up to four per team, including a slot for a player from AFC countries. In the 1985 season, Piyapong Pue-on
Piyapong Pue-on
of Thailand
Thailand
led foreign players in the league in scoring and assists. Other leading players were Rade Bogdanović, who had 10 goals and 10 assists in the 1996 season. Valeri Sarychev, the K League's most famous foreign goalkeeper, played in 320 league games from 1992 to 2004. He was eventually naturalized as a Korean citizen and given the Korean name Shin Eui-Son which means God's hand because of his stellar play. In the 1990s, the trend was for the K League
K League
to get foreign players from Eastern Europe like Rade Bogdanović, Radivoje Manic, Saša Drakulić and Denis Laktionov. From 2000, Brazilians became the K League's priority such as Tavares, Mota, Nádson, Adilson and Edu. Since 2009, players from AFC have been fairly popular especially those from Australia, China PR, Japan
Japan
and Uzbekistan. Franchise system[edit] See also: Decentralization policy in K League

Non-franchised Period (1983–1986): K League
K League
Clubs had franchise but clubs played the all game of round at one stadium. Franchised period (1987–present): K League
K League
introduced home and away matches system in 1987. Clubs which are not listed in the table don't have franchise relocations.

Franchise relocations[edit]

Club Original City / area (joined year) Non-franchised period 1983–1986 Franchised period 1987–present

Pohang
Pohang
Steelers Daegu+ Gyeongbuk
Gyeongbuk
(1983) N/A Pohang
Pohang
(1990 / 1988[1]–present)

Jeju United Seoul+Incheon+ Gyeonggi
Gyeonggi
(1983) Seoul
Seoul
(1984) Incheon+ Gyeonggi
Gyeonggi
(1987) ▶ Seoul
Seoul
(1991) ▶ Bucheon
Bucheon
/ Mok-dong, Seoul
Seoul
(1996)[2] ▶ Bucheon
Bucheon
(2001) ▶ Jeju (2006–present)

Busan
Busan
IPark Busan+ Gyeongnam
Gyeongnam
(1983) N/A Busan
Busan
(1990 / 1989[1]–present)

Ulsan
Ulsan
Hyundai Incheon+ Gyeonggi
Gyeonggi
(1984) Incheon+Gyeonggi+Gangwon(1986) Gangwon (1987) ▶ Ulsan
Ulsan
(1990–present)

FC Seoul Chungcheong
Chungcheong
(1984) N/A Chungcheong
Chungcheong
(1987) ▶ Seoul
Seoul
(1990) ▶ Anyang
Anyang
(1996) ▶ Seoul (2004–present)

Seongnam
Seongnam
FC Seoul
Seoul
(1989) N/A Cheonan
Cheonan
(1996) ▶ Seongnam
Seongnam
(2000–present)

Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu[3] Gwangju
Gwangju
(2003) N/A Gwangju
Gwangju
(2003) ▶ Sangju
Sangju
(2011–present)

Asan
Asan
Mugunghwa[4] N/A(All matches were away matches) (2013) N/A Ansan
Ansan
(2014) ▶ Asan
Asan
(2017–present)

[1] K League
K League
officially began city franchise policy in 1990, But Pohang Steelers
Pohang Steelers
began in 1988 and Busan IPark
Busan IPark
began in 1989. [2] Actually Bucheon
Bucheon
SK held all home matches at Mokdong Stadium
Mokdong Stadium
in Seoul
Seoul
until 2000. Because Bucheon
Bucheon
Stadium was under construction. [3] Gwangju
Gwangju
Sangmu and Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu are sepate leagal entities by K League. Officially, not relocated and founded as a new club. [4] Ansan
Ansan
Police and Asan
Asan
Police are sepate leagal entities by K League. Officially, not relocated and founded as a new club. K League
K League
Awards[edit]

K League
K League
MVP Award K League
K League
Top Scorer Award K League
K League
Top Assistor Award K League
K League
Rookie of the Year Award K League
K League
Manager of the Year Award K League
K League
Best XI K League
K League
FANtastic Player

Sponsorship[edit]

Start End Name

1983 1993

None

1994 1995 Hite

1996 1997 Rapido

1998  – Hyundai

1999  – Buy Korea

2000  – Samsung DigiTall

2001  – POSCO

2002 2008 Samsung Hauzen

2009  –

None

2010  – Hyundai Motor Company
Hyundai Motor Company
Sonata

2011 2016 Hyundai
Hyundai
Oilbank

2017 2019 KEB Hana Bank

References[edit]

^ "In search of Korea's disappearing Red Devils-INSIDE Korea JoongAng Daily". Koreajoongangdaily.joins.com. 2012-06-06. Retrieved 2014-02-01.  ^ "South Korean Teams Fight for Attention at Home". The New York Times. Retrieved 2014-02-02.  ^ "위원석의 하프타임 'K리그'에 새로운 이름을 붙여주자" (in Korean). The Daily Sports Seoul. February 19, 2013. Archived from the original on December 11, 2013. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to K League.

Official K League
K League
website (in English) Official K League
K League
website (in Korean)

v t e

K League

K League 1 (2018)

Daegu
Daegu
FC Gangwon FC Gyeongnam
Gyeongnam
FC Incheon
Incheon
United Jeju United Jeonbuk Hyundai
Hyundai
Motors Jeonnam Dragons Pohang
Pohang
Steelers Sangju
Sangju
Sangmu FC Seoul Suwon
Suwon
Samsung Bluewings Ulsan
Ulsan
Hyundai

K League 2 (2018)

Ansan
Ansan
Greeners FC Asan
Asan
Mugunghwa FC Anyang Bucheon
Bucheon
FC 1995 Busan
Busan
IPark Daejeon
Daejeon
Citizen Gwangju
Gwangju
FC Seongnam
Seongnam
FC Seoul
Seoul
E-Land FC Suwon
Suwon
FC

Former clubs

Kookmin Bank Hallelujah Hanil Bank Chonbuk Buffalo Chungju Hummel Goyang Zaicro FC

Competitions

Promotion-Relegation Playoffs Reserve League Championship Playoffs (defunct) Super Cup (defunct) League Cup (defunct)

Players

K League 1 foreign players K League 2 foreign players

Statistics

K League
K League
records and statistics Champions 20–20 30–30 40–40 50–50 60–60 70-70

Awards

Most Valuable Player Manager of the Year Top Scorer Top Assistor Young Player of the Year Best XI FANtastic Player

v t e

K League
K League
seasons

K League
K League
1

1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018

K League
K League
2

2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018

v t e

Korean League Cup seasons

Professional Football Championship

1986

Korean League Cup

1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011

Korean League Cup (Supplementary Cup)

1997 1998 1999 2000

v t e

Football in South Korea

National Association

National teams

Men

National team Olympic (U-23) U-20 U-17 Futsal Beach soccer

Women

National team U-20 U-17 Futsal

League system

Men

K League

K League
K League
1 K League
K League
2

National League K3 League

Women

WK League

Cup competitions

FA Cup All-Stars Game National League Cup Challengers Cup

Reserves & academy

Reserves League University League K League
K League
Youth League

Other

List of venues List of clubs Clubs in Champions League Foreign K League
K League
players Foreign Korea National League
Korea National League
players

Defunct competitions

All Joseon Football Tournament (1921–1940) Kyungsung FC–Pyongyang FC rivalry (1929–1946) National Football Championship (1946–2000) Korean President's Cup (1952–2009) National Semi-Professional Football League (1964–2002) Korea Cup (1971–1999) Super Cup (1999–2006) League Cup (1986–2011)

Men's players Women's players Expatriate players Managers Refer

.