Suk, the day after

Suk, the day after

The Thursday after Luis Suarez’ quartet of goals against Roda JC (4-0), was also ‘the day after’ for Hyun Jun Suk. The 18 year-old South Korean made his debut with Ajax 1 on Wednesday evening, ten minutes before the end of the match. Thursday after the game, he basked in the afterglow of these first minutes of play.

The game’s leading man (Luis Suarez), along with the other members of the squad, had a day off on Thursday. The man with the best supporting role, (Hyun Jun Suk), reported for training at the field next to the ArenA, together with the other players who either didn’t play against Roda JC, or were substitutes.

At the end of the practice session, Suk, glancing at keeper coach Carlo l’Ami and assistant-coach Danny Blind’s watches, decides to add on another twenty minutes of training for himself. “Extra practice is good”, declares the rookie, as he leaves the training field.

His Dutch language lessons have served him well so far. He drops the words “Links, rechts” (left, right), and “goed” (good) frequently. And asked if he is “blij” (happy), he answers “vrolijk!” (cheerful). The cheers of 46.556 spectators have done him good, he says on Thursday morning. “Crowd, good!” he says, giving a thumbs up.

His first minutes in Ajax 1 will likely be broadcast by the Korean station KSB on Thursday. The first Suk shirts have been sold in the Official Ajax Fan shop. On game Wednesday, six jerseys bearing the number 39 and “Suk” had already been sold. “Tot ziens” (goodbye) says the tall Korean, heading to the locker room.