Koo pursuing Olympic dream
Rising midfielder Koo Ja-cheol said Tuesday that he is determined to commit to the Under-23 football team for the London Olympics.
“Individually, I am fully prepared for the Summer Olympics,” the 23-year-old said on his arrival in Korea.
“My Olympic participation will be decided shortly. Although I need to talk with my club, I believe I can play at the Olympics.”
Koo, currently on loan with Bundesliga outfit Augsburg from VfL Wolfsburg, had a breakout second half of this past season.
Since moving to Augsburg in January 2012, Koo, formerly of Jeju United in the K-League, has put in impressive performances, scoring five goals in 15 appearances.
In addition, as the team’s top scorer, he has contributed to Jos Luhukay’s side avoiding relegation in its maiden year in German football’s top flight.
Despite his strong desire to join the Olympic squad, Koo still has a barrier to tear down on his road to London.
By and large, the German league has been negative about releasing players for the Olympics and Wolfsburg manager Felix Magath has not given any clear sign that the Korean midfielder will be released.
“Wolfsburg knows how much I want to play at the Olympics,” said Koo, whose loan spell expires at the end of this season.
“The Bundesliga doesn’t put much weight on the Olympics, but I have a different view on the Games. Therefore, going to the Olympics and producing good results are more important than any other thing just now.”
Koo’s agent, Choi Woul-kyoo, said that his side is still in talks with Wolfsburg.
“We have already talked to the team about his Olympic release,” Choi said.
“I think that he may not be able to respond to the Olympic team’s early call-up, but we will try our best for him to play at the Olympics.”
Koo also said that he was on the phone with Olympic manager Hong Myung-bo.
“I talked with the manager over the phone from Germany. He originally planned to watch my game at the stadium but due to a scheduling conflict with national team boss Choi Kang-hee, he cancelled it,” he said.
“We will meet in Korea.”