The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (hereinafter referred to as the Ministry) announced in a press release on the 13th that it will “actively support the ground restoration of the Seoul World Cup Stadium, which is causing concerns about the damage to the grass ground due to the closing ceremony of the 2023 World Scout Jamboree and the K-Pop Super Live concert.”
“The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has budgeted for the restoration of the stadium from the planning stage and will support the restoration to the best of its ability,” the ministry said. “As soon as the demolition of concert-related facilities such as the stage is completed, the Seoul Facilities Corporation will closely examine the ground conditions and begin emergency restoration, including replanting the dedicated grass.”
“We will work with Seoul FC, which uses the Seoul World Cup Stadium as its home stadium, and the Seoul Facilities Corporation to restore the stadium to its original condition as soon as possible,” the ministry promised.
The ministry organized a K-pop concert at Seoul World Cup Stadium on the afternoon of Nov. 11 to mark the closing ceremony of the 2023 Saemangeum Jamboree. The performance was originally scheduled for the Saemangeum area.
However, the venue was abruptly changed to Jeonju World Cup Stadium, home of Jeonbuk Hyundai, on June 6 due to the government’s complacency in preparing for the heat wave and lack of facilities. Due to the unilateral notification, Jeonbuk had to reschedule its FA Cup quarterfinal match against Incheon United at home on the 9th. Both the club and its fans had to bear the time and financial losses.
Despite the promise, there seems to be little will from the Ministry of Culture. They didn’t even know the names of the teams using the stadium.
If it weren’t for the MOCA, you could excuse the mistake. But when the ministry in charge of culture and sports in South Korea doesn’t even know the name of a top-level soccer team, one of the most popular sports in the country, it’s a big deal.
The ministry has already disrespected Korean soccer. To add insult to injury. When it comes to jamboree concerts, the K League has always taken a backseat. 꽁머니
On June 6, the ministry announced that the Jamboree K-pop concert, which was scheduled to be held on a special stage outside Saemangeum, would be held at Jeonju World Cup Stadium on June 11.
In the aftermath, the Jeonbuk Hyundai-Incheon United and FA Cup matches were canceled. With Jeonbuk, Incheon, and soccer fans already affected, the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism announced that the event would be moved to Seoul World Cup Stadium instead of Jeonju due to concerns about Typhoon Kanun.
The jamboree concert bomb fell on FC Seoul. The event was eventually canceled. The hybrid turf that FC Seoul and the Seoul Metropolitan Government boasted was already ruined.
In response to criticism about the condition of the turf at the Seoul World Cup Stadium, which has been hosting national team A matches, the Seoul Facilities Management Corporation laid a new hybrid turf in October 2021, which is a mixture of 95 percent natural grass and 5 percent artificial grass.
The stadium has invested 1 billion won to reduce potholes and improve the drainage system, and to prevent damage to the turf, the stadium has stopped hosting large concerts, which would have been a major source of revenue. When some events were allowed to take place, the stage was set up in the E section with adjustable seats to minimize damage to the grass.
It’s no surprise that the Jamboree was a disaster, putting a lot of pressure on the government. But a thorough plan, even if it was late, could have prevented problems from escalating.