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"You have a nickname, 'Prince Bento'"

Zvezda officially announced Hwang Hee-chan's joining on the club's website on the 14th (Korea Standard Time), saying, "We will introduce Hwang In-beom, who signed a four-year contract with our club and received his back number 66 at the Stadion Laiko Mitichi Media Center."

Hwang In-beom confirmed his originally announced joining Zvezda through this joining ceremony, signaling a new start in Serbia. Zvezda announced on the 5th that he had recruited Hwang In-beom through a transfer fee of 5.5 million euros (about 7.8 billion won), saying, "I signed a four-year contract with midfielder Hwang In-beom."

Zvezda was the birthplace of star players who led the heyday of Yugoslav football in the 1990s. Sinisa Mikhailovich, who made his name with a long-distance free kick, Dragan Stoikovich, who had been a Japanese J-League team coach for a long time as the best technician in Eastern Europe, and Dejan Savichevich, who dominated the era as a main striker in AC Milan, were successful through Zvezda.

Hwang In-beom said in an interview with the team, "I'm excited to come to Red Star and play in front of fantastic fans. "I'm grateful to the people of Zvezda for recruiting me and giving me the opportunity to play in such a big club," he said.

"I arrived in Belgrade (Serbian capital) last night, and I was really happy. I think my wife will like this city, too. I'm really happy to be here," he said, adding to his expectations.

Zvezda was the birthplace of star players who led the heyday of Yugoslav football in the 1990s. Sinisa Mikhailovich, who made his name with a long-distance free kick, Dragan Stoikovich, who had been a Japanese J-League team coach for a long time as the best technician in Eastern Europe, and Dejan Savichevich, who dominated the era as a main striker in AC Milan, were successful through Zvezda.

Asked about Zvezda's team history, Hwang In-beom said, "Zvezda is not only the largest club in Serbia but also one of the big clubs in Europe. It is a club that won the Champions League in 1991, and there are not many clubs in Europe that can boast about it."

Zvezda also reached the UEFA Champions League finals in the 2023/24 season. On the 20th, he will play the first group match against "defending champion" Manchester City. Zvezda was in Group G with Manchester City (England), RB Leipzig (Germany), and BSC Young Boys (Switzerland) in this year's Champions League.

Regarding this, Hwang In-beom said, "The Champions League is a big reason why I'm here. "We all want to play in the best tournament in the world," he said. "I'm ready to play in Zvezda with my teammates to introduce myself to my fans."

"There is no easy group in the Champions League. We're a good team, and we're happy to play against big European clubs like Manchester City," he said, adding, "I'm looking forward to the game, and we're not afraid of anyone. I think we can beat anyone in Group G," he said with confidence.

He already made fans excited, saying he asked for advice from his teammates before facing Manchester City. Hwang In-beom said, "When I asked about Man City, everyone should be ready to run for 90 minutes without a break." This is something I can do. You have to win the Champions League and play for a draw through defense. I'm ready to help the team, and I'm ready to play like a dog," he said.

Regarding the burden of the club's highest transfer fee, he said, "It's better to have a burden. I'm glad I'm in the big club, and it doesn't affect me whether I get the most expensive contract. The pressure is not because I'm paid a lot, but because I hang out with this club. I will do my best to help the team, show my personality, and make many goals through help," he said with confidence.

Hwang In-beom even released a training photo after the official announcement of his joining the team, and immediately began work to adapt to the Zvezda team. Meanwhile, local media also paid attention to news related to Hwang In-beom, expressing expectations for him.

The Serbian daily Danas reported on the 15th that "Zvezda's most expensive recruitment" and that Hwang In-beom joined the team.

Danas said, "Zvezda paid the highest cost ever to recruit Hwang In-beom. Hwang In-beom was pleased that he joined the former European championship line and that he could play in the Champions League in front of passionate fans. He is expected to connect the rear with the attack as role number 10.

Hwang In-beom is one of the numerous players representing Korean football in Europe along with Tottenham ace Son Heung-min. Hwang In-beom was one of the most favored players by head coach Paulo Bento, who led the Korean national team during the Qatar World Cup last year, and was nicknamed "The Prince," he also noted Hwang In-beom's national team career.

Meanwhile, expectations for Hwang In-beom have been revealed as a great interest in him even before the news of his joining the team broke.

Serbian media Republika paid attention to Hwang In-beom on the 5th, saying, "Red Star's new midfielder is not an ordinary soccer player."

Republika said, "Hwang In-beom has a very interesting biography and will attract fans' attention. He is the most expensive freshman in team history. He started his career in Daejeon and was the youngest scorer in Daejeon history, and established himself as a member of Vancouver in MLS. After that, he returned to Seoul via Rubin Kazan and arrived in Zvezda from Olympiacos," he said, explaining Hwang In-beom's football career.

The media even mentioned detailed news about Hwang In-beom. Republika said, "Hwang In-beom also played soccer on the fourth floor of buildings and apartments. With the support of his father, he could play soccer in his apartment with a blanket on the floor to reduce the impact of the ball. His dog named it Coover because he liked Canadian cities so much, he said, referring to Hwang In-beom's childhood and dog.
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Friday, September 15, 2023
 
 
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