July 21, 2024

JESSE LINGARD’S home debut for FC Seoul has set a new K-League attendance record.

The former Manchester United star’s signing has prompted huge excitement among the South Korean side’s fanbase.

Jesse Lingard clapped fans after making his home debut

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Jesse Lingard clapped fans after making his home debutCredit: X / @Sungmo_Lee
Fans queued more than two hours before the game to buy Lingard merchandise

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Fans queued more than two hours before the game to buy Lingard merchandiseCredit: X / @stujames75
FC Seoul set up a special 'Lingard Zone' for the occasion

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FC Seoul set up a special ‘Lingard Zone’ for the occasionCredit: X / @stujames75

Lingard, 31, appeared to be heckled by Gwangju fans as he made his debut with a 13-minute cameo in last week’s season opener away from home.

It was a different story at Seoul World Cup Stadium, however, with 51,670 fans packing in to catch a glimpse of their new signing in today’s Gyeongin Derby against Incheon United.

Prior to the game a “Lingard Zone” was set up outside the ground in order for fans to buy the former England star’s FC Seoul merchandise.

More than two hours before the game a huge queue could be seen outside the stall, with The Athletic’s Stuart James claiming that FC Seoul had set up an entirely separate shop for Lingard merch, such was the expected demand.

Fans were made to wait to see their new man in action, with Lingard again starting on the bench.

He came on after half an hour, replacing Takuya Shigehiro to a huge ovation.

Lingard’s every touch was greeted with anticipation by the bumper crowd, with one flick in particular delighting fans.

In the 83rd minute he was granted an amazing chance to score, but scuffed his first-time shot high and wide after it appeared to hit a bobble.

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After the game, which finished 0-0, Lingard said: “Probably should have won in the end. I had a couple of half-chances.

“Not enough clear chances, but I think we can build on this. I think it’s all about mindset and confidence coming into these games.

Former Man Utd star Jesse Lingard appears to be BOOED as he comes on for Seoul FC debut in South Korea

“In front of a big crowd, first home game – amazing support throughout.

“We maybe should have finished off our chances.”

He then went on to thank fans for showing up in big numbers.

Today’s match drew the highest paid attendance in K-League history.

Previously, 60,747 packed into Seoul World Cup Stadium for a “Children’s Day” game against Seongnam in 2010.

The K-League’s previous paid attendance record was set in 2018, when FC Seoul’s clash with Daegu attracted a crowd of 45,007.

According to K League United, however, the bumper crowd on that day was largely due to a half-time performance by Lim Young-woong.

Lingard will hope to break into FC Seoul’s starting XI sooner rather than later.

The six-time K-League champions are at home once again next Saturday when they host islanders Jeju United.

Lingard signed a deal with FC Seoul running until December 31, 2025 last month, having been a free agent since leaving Nottingham Forest at the end of last season.

The contract possesses an option for a further year.

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Lingard's side drew 0-0 with their rivals Incheon United

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Lingard’s side drew 0-0 with their rivals Incheon UnitedCredit: K-League TV


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