The official website for European football

Alpay heads for Asia

Published: Thursday 29 January 2004, 15.04CET
Turkey defender Alpay Özalan has left Europe to join Korean K-League newcomers Incheon United.

UEFA.com features

The UEFA Academy – UEFA's commitment to learning
  • The UEFA Academy – UEFA's commitment to learning
  • Virgil van Dijk hands over €100,000 donation to ICRC on behalf of UEFA
  • Roberto Rosetti on the introduction of Video Assistant Referees
  • Professional Football Strategy Council meets in Nyon
  • Who makes our Europa League Team of the Week?
  • UEFA Champions League round of 16 classics
  • Who makes our Europa League Team of the Week?
  • Who makes our Europa League Team of the Week?
  • Drogba's greatest UEFA Champions League hits
  • Who makes our Europa League Team of the Week?
1 of 10
Published: Thursday 29 January 2004, 15.04CET

Alpay heads for Asia

Turkey defender Alpay Özalan has left Europe to join Korean K-League newcomers Incheon United.
Turkish international defender Alpay Özalan has signed a two-year deal to play for Korean K-League newcomers Incheon United.

Lorant reunion
Alpay was released by Aston Villa FC last October, after receiving heavy criticism in the English media following an incident involving David Beckham during Turkey's UEFA EURO 2004™ qualifier against England in Istanbul. He links up at Incheon with German coach Werner Lorant, whom he worked with at Fenerbahçe SK.

Happy memories
The 30-year-old revealed that his experience at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, where Turkey reached the semi-finals, was a key factor in his decision to move to the Korean Republic despite offers from several Turkish clubs. He said: "The interest and love we were shown during the World Cup in 2002 had a very positive effect on my choice. I can still hear the cheering of Korean fans at the third-place play-off."

Last updated: 29/01/04 17.55CET

Related information

Team profiles

http://www.uefa.com/memberassociations/news/newsid=141057.html#alpay+heads+asia