Park Ji-Sung, a Manchester United legend, has begged fans to desist from repeating a song that Koreans consider derogatory in his honor. Between 2005 and 2012, Park spent seven seasons at Old Trafford, where he became a fan favorite and one of the most well-known Asian players of all time.
Sir Alex Ferguson coached the South Korean to 13 titles before leaving to join QPR before returning in October 2014 as a worldwide ambassador for the Red Devils. Despite their adoration for the player, United fans devised a chant at the time that made fun of the racial stereotype of South Koreans eating dogs.
Some United fans repeated the cry after United’s 1-0 win against Wolves at the Molineux in August, when the hosts introduced their new acquisition Hwang Hee-Chan, a South Korean, to the crowd. Despite never objecting to the shouts during his playing days, Park has now spoken out on the need to put an end to them.
“I know United supporters don’t mean any offense to him for that song, but I still have to educate the fans to avoid using that phrase [dog meat], which is generally a racist insult to the Korean people these days,” Park stated on the UTD Podcast.
“That specific term is offensive to Koreans, and I pity the younger players who were exposed to that type of music.
“Things have changed dramatically in Korea. True, we have eaten dog meat in the past, but it is despised nowadays, especially among the younger generation. The atmosphere has shifted.
“I implore the supporters to refrain from singing that term. When Koreans hear the music, it makes them uncomfortable.
“It’s time to call it a day.”
In the meanwhile, Manchester United has endorsed Park’s request, adding, “Manchester United completely endorses Ji-statements Sung’s and asks supporters to follow his desires.”
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