North Korean players defect?

Submitted by GVBlue86 on June 18th, 2010 at 12:18 PM

So apparently 4 players from North Korea are missing or AWOL. North Korea denies this saying that they filled out their teamsheet incorrectly and did not account for them. Coincidence? I think not...

I want to believe they are trying to escape Kim Jong IL. Please let that be the real story!



June 18th, 2010 at 12:24 PM ^

a few years ago when they were in the states. I believe it was their u20's (maybe 23's?).  I was kind of curious to see if this would happen when N. Korea qualified.


June 18th, 2010 at 1:00 PM ^

to North Korea. The world has likely never seen such a complete totalitarian regime as this. This is a country where the citizens have to stop several times per day to look at the mandatory picture of Kim in their homes and at work, and sing songs of praise to him, while he starves non-military people on purpose. If there was ever a true definition of the word evil, this is it. 


June 18th, 2010 at 2:30 PM ^

If you want to see a great documentary about North Korea see the following (14 3-minute sections and each one is better than the last).  Vice TV did a great job putting this together:

First episode is in the DMZ, then they make it into the country.  Easiest way to navigate sections is just to change the address).


Insane the horrors and lack of freedom that people in these type of regimes must endure.  Sadly there are many others to certain degrees (Cuba, Venezuela, Myanmar, etc)

June 18th, 2010 at 3:22 PM ^

Vice definitely did a good job with that documentary. It opened my eyes...pretty crazy stuff there in PRK.

On a side note, I would suggest skipping their guide to Liberia. It was made by the same guy that did the N. Korea one, but he's way more douchey and sensational in the Liberia doc. I was disappointed.


June 18th, 2010 at 1:34 PM ^

Well for whatever reason this appears to be the chance that they took.

I wonder if the remaining players are annoyed, not because they were bailed on in the middle of the tournament, but rather because now they will be watched heavily and given little if any freedoms.  The rest will have no realistic chance of escape now.


June 18th, 2010 at 10:09 PM ^

If they were willing to defect, they probably didn't feel that much loyalty to Dear Leader's team, so what's a couple of games?  Hopefully FIFA can grant some kind of political-refugee exemption for them and allow them to compete for their new countries, if they're good enough.


June 18th, 2010 at 12:36 PM ^

This reminds me of that movie 'Victory' with Stallone and Michael Caine, where the crowd storms the field after the game is finished. They then proceed to dress up the team in civilian clothes so that they blend in with the rest of the crowd. They just walked right on out of there, none of the German guards could witness any of them leaving. That Michael Caine is very stealthy.

Tha Quiet Storm

June 18th, 2010 at 1:26 PM ^

you wish them the best, whatever happens, but from a selfish soccer fan's perspective, NK gave Brazil a hell of a game and I would be really disappointed if they were undermanned in their next two.  I would love to see their tight defense get Ronaldo all pissed off and whiny.


June 18th, 2010 at 1:30 PM ^

I remember a huge article in ESPN magazine years ago about the Iraq soccer team.  After they lost in the World Cup  Uday and Qusay Hussein mercilessly tortured them to death.  At least we finally gave them what they had coming.


June 18th, 2010 at 1:39 PM ^

I actually thought about this a few days ago when they were on TV.  I thought if I were one of those I might try to escape because there's no way they are going to win anything, which means they will be shot anyway when they get back to their country (or the hotel) so why not make a run for it?  Seriously though, it must be awful to live like that.


June 18th, 2010 at 1:48 PM ^

...that the DRPK leadership established the following national team selection criteria (all three have to be in evidence to warrant selection):

  1. Soccer skill
  2. Demonstrated party discipline and performance in multiple rigorous tests of loyalty
  3. Compromised position due to family ties

A player who still defects in the face of items 2 and 3 would have to be an especially determined and single minded person.