It was a rare sight. It was a vibe that reminded me of a soccer field located in England. Seoul E-Land FC’s ‘planning’ has done a great job.
On the 6th at 7pm, the Hana One Q K League 2 2023 round 25 match between Seoul E-Land and Gyeongnam FC took place at Mok-dong Sports Complex 스포츠토토 in Seoul. The away club Gyeongnam defeated Seoul E-Land 2-1. In this game, there was a scene that attracted as much attention as the fierce match between the two teams, and it was the ‘British scouts’. After getting out of the Jamboree surrounded by poor conditions, they decided to spend the night of the 6th at the Mokdong Sports Complex.
The driving force that British scouts were able to participate in Seoul E-Land’s home game was thanks to the club’s ‘planning’. Seoul E-Land tried to contact them through a British scout. After leaving the Jamboree, he suggested spending time in Seoul, ‘Let’s play soccer together’. The purpose was to plant good memories for those who pass through the end of their trip to Korea, which is more difficult than expected. British scouts who came from the home of football readily agreed to Seoul E-Land’s proposal. That’s how thousands of Englishmen came to Mokdong.
Since then, the front desk of the club has been busy. It didn’t work if I moved hard by inertia. As it was a situation that was not planned at all, ‘flexible coping’ was important. The visit of the scouts was confirmed only the day before the game, but somehow we had to use the time given effectively. Chae Seung-mok, director of Seoul E-Land, said, “It was not an easy preparation process. Nevertheless, we tried to bring out the maximum.
Seoul E-Land prepared meticulously. It started with distributing thousands of bottles of ‘ice water’ for the members who suffered from the scorching heat of the Jamboree, and in preparation for various safety accidents, they contacted the Yangcheon Police Station to receive police manpower. In addition, we thought about and implemented the maximum possible to think about, such as reinforcing the image of the electronic signboard to create a soccer festival, deploying additional security personnel at the stadium, and recruiting people who can speak foreign languages.
Thanks to the efforts of Seoul E-Land, which meticulously prepared like ‘Dobby the house elf’ in an invisible place, the Mok-dong Sports Complex on the 6th provided an unforgettable experience to all the visitors. Those who stayed in the space and time deserved to think, ‘This is one of the football fields in England’. The crew members from the Jonggatjip knew which club they were rooting for without having to tell them. He shouted “SEFC”, the abbreviation of Seoul E-Land, throughout the game and encouraged the players running on the field as if they were the players who had been supporting them all their lives. When Gyeongnam, the enemy of the day (?), scored a goal, they did not hesitate to boo. As much as he saw, heard, and grew up in the home of football, he seemed to realize what kind of duty he had to fulfill as a home fan.
British scouts also raised the atmosphere in a different way. In the crowd that filled the stands, someone shouted “Oggy, Oggy, Oggy” into the lead, and everyone else responded with “Oi, Oi, Oi”. The so-called ‘Oggy Chant’, which continued throughout the game, is a way for British people to enjoy the moment at sporting events or camps, and such a unique scenery was created at E-Land’s Mok-dong Sports Complex in Seoul. After the match, Gyeongnam coach Seol Gi-hyeon said, “The sound of cheering was amazing,” which proves that the influence of Ogi Chant was great. In addition to this, British scouts enjoyed the midsummer night by showing support for surfing, which can only be seen in national team games. ‘Memories in Korea’, which Seoul E-Land intended by inviting the crew, seemed to have been successfully completed.
Seoul E-Land recorded ‘the largest number of spectators’ since the club was founded on the 6th. 6,471 people visited the Mok-dong Sports Complex, the highest figure during the Jamsil, Cheonan, and Mok-dong days. The invitation, which started with warm intentions, evolved into publicity marketing that will remain in the club’s history, and that was a point that was also connected by numbers. In addition, the influence of British scouts was strong in food trucks, convenience stores within the club, and MD shops. In particular, MD Shop set a ‘true record’ with a 642% increase in sales. An official from the club said, “I have no clothes to sell for the next game,” and delivered a mixed review of satisfaction and worry.
Even after the game, under the proper control of Seoul E-Land, the British scouts left the stadium in an orderly manner. Even the moment he left the scene, he was enjoying the present with a bright expression. Director Chae Seung-mok said, “It was a valuable experience for everyone on the field, from the scouts to the club front desk. I feel very proud to be able to deliver good memories as a gift to those who have visited Korea.”
Seeing how Seoul E-Land invited British scouts who were absent from the Jamboree and made an interesting match, there were also favorable reviews from the outside, such as ‘Seoul E-Land worked’ and ‘It was like the Premier League’. It was a moment that proved that a lot can be done even in a sudden situation if the club’s excellent planning is supported. The scouts who came to Korea for the Jamboree and cheered for Seoul E-Land to their heart’s content and returned home, they seem to remember and cherish the club for a long time. Special memories engraved in childhood tend to last a lifetime.