South Korean football sensation Son Heung-min revealed that he was racially abused in Germany while speaking to fans at an event in Seoul on Monday.
Son has emerged as an icon for many young Asian fans who aspire to be successful on the global stage. The Tottenham talisman became the first Asian footballer to win the Golden boot award after becoming the top scorer in the Barclays Premier League2021-22 season with 23 goals to his name.
Son moved to Europe from South Korea in 2008, joining Hamburg’s youth academy on an international exchange program. He impressed the Hamburg management who signed him on a permanent deal. He represented the Hamburg youth academy for four years until he was signed by Bayern Leverkusen.
While talking to fans at an event in Seoul, Son revealed his encounters with racism during his stint in Germany.
“I moved to Germany when I was young and went through so many really difficult, unimaginable moments. I faced a lot of racism. And while going through such a really difficult time, I had a lot of thoughts on my mind I should get my revenge one day.”
Son was able to get his sweet ‘revenge’ following South Korea’s stunning World Cup triumph against Germany in 2018. He netted in his team’s 2-0 triumph over Germany, which knocked the defending champions out of the FIFA World cup.
“When people cry, I’d want to comfort them and give them a hug,” he said. “But watching German people cry, I was able to take revenge by doing something I like,” the South Korean international added.
Son spent two years at Bayern Leverkusen before being signed by Premier League side Tottenham for £22 million in 2015.
Unfortunately, the South Korean has also suffered racism in England during his Premier League career since joining Spurs from Leverkusen in 2015. Last year, eight individuals were detained at various locations in England and Wales on suspicion of tweeting racial insults toward Son.
The 29-year-old striker will travel to South Korea alongside his Tottenham teammates for pre-season games. They will play against the K-League All-Stars in Seoul on July 13 and then will take on Sevilla FC in Suwon on July 16.