The Atletico Madrid squad won the hearts of South Korean fans with their fan service. The players made a friendly impression on the first day of their visit, raising expectations for what’s to come.
Atletico arrived at Incheon International Airport on the afternoon of the 25th. The team exited the arrivals hall at 4:30 p.m., with crowds already gathering around the exit two hours earlier. A large number of security personnel were called in to clear the area just before the team’s arrival.
Fans at the airport greeted the athletes with cheers as they arrived. They shouted out their favorite players’ names and asked for autographs. The athletes were mostly friendly. It wasn’t the best of conditions for fan service, but Antoine Griezmann and Memphis Depay were among the stars who responded to fans’ requests.
Kim San, 22, who traveled from Songpa-gu, Seoul, when he heard that his favorite team, Atletico, was coming to Korea, got his shirt signed by three players. Stefan Savic, Cesar Aspilicueta, and Alvaro Morata gave him their autographs.
“I became an Atletico fan after watching soccer since the 2013-14 season,” said Kim, who waited more than two hours to get his wish. “I didn’t expect to get an autograph. I came with the intention of seeing (the players’) faces. (Getting an autograph) made me feel really good. My voice got louder. I plan to watch the game against Team K League.” 스포츠토토
Quite a few fans got autographs from Atletico players and went home with light feet. The fans were tired after traveling from Madrid, Spain, and stepping on Korean soil for more than 12 hours, but the fan service was outstanding. “I’m very grateful to the players,” said Kim San, giving them a thumbs-up.
Upon arrival in Korea, the team headed straight to the Conrad Hotel in Yeouido, Seoul. The day after their arrival, Atletico will hold a pre-match press conference with Team K-League at the Seoul World Cup Stadium. Afterward, the team will meet with fans for another open training session. On the 27th, the team will face Team K-League and three days later, Manchester City (England).