AFC Asian Cup 2019: North Korea appoint 35-year-old Kim Yong-jun as head coach

AFC Asian Cup 2019 - Kim Yong-jun - North Korea

Pyongyang’s state media reported that North Korea has appointed 35-year-old Kim Yong-jun as the head coach of the national team ahead of the AFC Asian Cup 2019.

North Korea are competing in the continental football competition under Group E along with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Lebanon. They begin their campaign on January 8, 2019.

Before North Korea formally commence their AFC Asian Cup tournament, they are scheduled to have a friendly match against Vietnam on December 25, 2018. Vietnam are under South Korean head coach Park Hang-seo. The match will also serve as coach Kim Yong-jun’s debut for the national team.

Kim Yong-jun played as a midfielder for North Korea, where he was part of the squad that qualified for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. He also featured in the 2010 World Cup campaign, coming in as a second-half substitute against Portugal.

As for his club career, Kim Yong-jun spent most of his playing years with Pyongyang City Sports Club with stints in China, playing for Yanbian FC and Chengdu Blades.

His coaching career has been revolved mainly with the North Korean national sides, mentoring the U-16, U-17 and U-23 junior teams from 2013 to 2017 according to the Korea Central News Agency.