Gwangju announced on the 24th that it has appointed Ahn Young-kyu as captain of the new season, and Lee Min-ki and Lee Hee-kyun as vice-captain.
First of all, Ahn will wear the captain’s armband for three consecutive years. An from Geumho High School in Gwangju, he worked for Suwon Samsung and Daejeon Hana Citizen before joining Gwangju in 2015. Afterwards, he moved to Seongnam FC and returned to Gwangju in 2022.
Ahn Young-kyu, who immediately served as captain, led the team to win the K League 2 title and promotion in the same year. Last year, he led the team to qualify for the AFC Champions League Elite (ACLE) along with ranking third, the highest in its team. Gwangju introduced Ahn as “He displayed active communication and crisis response capability with outstanding leadership.”
Defender Lee Min-ki and midfielder Lee Hee-kyun will assist Ahn Young-kyu as vice-captain. Lee Min-ki, who joined the club in 2016, is a “one-club man” who will be in his eighth season in Gwangju. “He has been playing as a hidden housekeeper by maintaining his performance by playing in more than 25 games every season for the past three years, showing strong mental strength and physical strength on the field,” the Gwangju Metropolitan Government said of Lee Min-ki. “He is considered the right person for vice-captain because he has shown positive energy in connecting veterans with young players,” it added.
Lee joined Gwangju in 2019. He failed to secure a starting position for several seasons, but emerged as an indispensable player in the team last season. He is also the first player from a youth team to play in 100 league games. The Gwangju Metropolitan Government described Lee as a “housekeeper who can be seen anywhere in the field with his robust activities and dedicated play.”
“I wanted to lead the team as a captain for one more year because I thought it would be a great motivation for my career as I went to ACLE this season,” Ahn Young-kyu said. “Because it’s an important season, the players will see us and think good things.”
Lee Min-ki said, “It’s my first time serving as the captain of the team, and it’s an honor to serve as the vice-captain of the team that will win this season,” adding, “It’s a burden, but I’ll reflect the opinions of young and senior players and deliver them well to Hee-kyun to lead the team.”
Lee Hee-kyun said, “I think the coach left it to be a little more mature,” adding, “I will show good performance so that I can prove my vice-captain’s qualifications while helping (Ahn) Young-kyu, the captain.” 토토사이트