On Monday, Ulsan Hyundai FC, a Korean football club, issued an apology for racist comments made by their players towards Thai player Sasalak Haiprakhon on social media. The defending K League 1 champions expressed regret to fans and Sasalak for the “inappropriate words and action” by some of their players. The club also announced that disciplinary proceedings would be opened soon.
The offensive comments were made on Ulsan defender Lee Myung-jae’s Instagram page over the weekend. Lee Gyu-sung, one of Lee’s teammates, referred to Lee Myung-jae as a Southeast Asian player in a derogatory manner, alluding to the dark tone of his skin. Additionally, another Ulsan player, Park Yong-woo, called Lee “Sasalak,” drawing a comparison to Sasalak Haiprakhon, who played for Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors in 2021. A third Ulsan player, Jung Seung-hyun, and a club official also participated in the offensive comments.토토총판
Fans who witnessed the exchange took screenshots and shared them on fan community sites and with the media, accusing the players of racism towards Southeast Asian individuals. Lee Myung-jae deleted the post, and Park wrote an apology on his own Instagram page.
The K League, the governing body of professional football in South Korea, is also considering taking disciplinary action against the players. They have requested Ulsan to submit a detailed report of the incident by Wednesday, and a decision regarding a disciplinary hearing will be made after reviewing the report. The K League expressed a serious approach towards the matter.