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LEE'S PARK LIFE

Posted on 22 October 2005  - 12:00

Lee Young-Pyo's footballing journey takes a new turn when he comes up against his friend and compatriot Ji-Sung Park at Old Trafford on Saturday.

Lee Young-Pyo's footballing journey takes a new turn when he comes up against his friend and compatriot Ji-Sung Park at Old Trafford on Saturday.

It will be the first time the South Korean internationals have faced each other since leaving home for PSV Eindhoven six months after the success of the 2002 World Cup. Both players followed their national team manager Guus Hiddink to Holland.

The pair - who starred in South Korea's amazing run to the semi-finals of the World Cup staged in Korea and Japan - adapted well to life in the Dutch Eredivisie and played key roles as PSV claimed the league and cup double in 2005. They also reached the semi-finals of the Champions League last season and Park scored in an unlucky semi-final defeat to AC Milan.

Park completed his move to the Premiership first with United securing the deal in early July. Young-Pyo joined us in August and now the friends are set for a second versus third showdown on Saturday.

"I've known Ji-Sung for a long time," said Young-Pyo. "We started playing together for the Korean national team some seven, eight years ago. We also had three years together every day at PSV, so we know everything about each other!

IT'S A VERY GOOD STORY. WE WENT TO THE NETHERLANDS TOGETHER AND HAD A VERY GOOD TIME THERE. I ONLY HAVE GOOD MEMORIES THERE

"We speak a lot - about England, the Premiership, I explain about Spurs, he talks about Manchester United. We are both happy in England.

"Ji-Sung is a very strong player, very athletic with lots of ability. This match is very important for us both."ÂÂ

Indeed, Young-Pyo was keen to put across the message that Saturday was all about Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, not himself and Ji-Sung.

"It's a very important match for our teams, especially when you look where we are in the table," he added.

"The most important thing for us is to take one point or three points - that's more important than the fact that I'm playing against Ji-Sung Park."ÂÂ