About this blog

My blog is about going to the match. Usually football, but sometimes baseball, basketball, even ice-hockey if there’s nothing else going on. I first went to watch my football team, Middlesbrough, forty-odd years ago and they are still the only team whose result I care about. I travel about though and so don’t see the Boro very often these days.

I started this blog when I was living in Korea and I decided that I’d keep the link with Middlesbrough by following Jeonbuk Motors. The reason for that was that one of their strikers used to play for us. In January 2007 Middlesbrough made its long-awaited strategic move into the Asian replica kit market by signing Lee Dong Gook. He wasn’t a big success though and a year or so later he was gone. He had struggled to make much of an impact, scoring just two goals and, I suspect, selling even fewer shirts. But the Lion King, as we were told he is nicknamed in Korea, was the only tenuous footballing link to home that I could find and so it was him and his team Jeonbuk that I thought I’d make a point of watching. It gave me a name for the blog too.

Truth is though, I couldn’t really get worked up about whether they won or lost. It wasn’t like following your own team where a late goal can make or break your week. It was great watching the match, but I’d generally forgotten the score before the players had left the pitch. It was a shame really, as Jeonbuk had been pretty successful in the time I’d been out there and it would have made a pleasant change to support a team that had a chance of winning something.

What I found more enjoyable was the ‘ground-hopping’ thing, watching games in as many as possible of the different stadiums throughout the four divisions. That’s surprised me really, as whilst I’ve always liked ‘doing stuff’ I’ve never really seen myself as someone who ticks things off a list before.

However, once I get into something I tend to do it to excess and so I worked my way through the football stadiums, the baseball stadiums, the basketball arenas, even the horse racing tracks. I like live sport and I like seeing new places so there’s a certain logic to it. If that wasn’t enough, I’m into hiking too and did my best to get around all the National and Provincial Parks. I write about the matches that I’ve attended mainly so that when the memories fade I’ll have a record of where I’ve been. I know from the number of visitors that the blog gets that it isn’t something with a wide appeal. In fact almost all of the hits come from people searching for bears, pomeranian dogs or celebrities in various states of undress. That’s ok though, Korean fourth division football isn’t really a subject with much of a following.

When I left Korea in 2013 and took up a new job in South Africa I intended to just let the blog float around in cyberspace and start a new African one. There’s only so much change I’m comfortable with though and I like the format of this place. So, it’s now just a sporting blog, rather than a Korean sporting blog. It’ll mainly be football that I write about from wherever in the world I am, but if I get the chance to see a game of something else then that may very well find itself here too.

Thanks for visiting.

12 Responses to “About this blog”

  1. Ilsan_Boro Says:

    Hi mate, welcome to Seoul from a fellow Boro fan here. Great blog and nice to see you seem to be enjoying Korea.

    As I said on the fmttm thread, feel free to give us a shout here anytime (e-mail entered above).



  2. zdrowie Says:

    really good blog post, thank you!

  3. Lex Says:

    i can’t believe i am just now finding this. good stuff and will follow. i am at every jeonbuk home game and travel some as well. if you attend any other jeonbuk games in jeonju this season, let me know.

  4. robo Says:

    what about pacrim rugger matey?

  5. Chris (mydogknowsKorean) Says:

    Hi, I was not looking for Paris but stumbled apon you somehow. I am not an avid sports person. I like baseball or a good American football game (which I know is not your football) occasionally while flipping channels we might see a game that looks like football, but then they catch the ball one toss it, and then we realize..it’s rugby. I hope by reading more of your blog it will give me some insights to the sports world. You mentioned British Sea Power and because I do love music I checked them out. NICE. I am currently obsessed with Korean music and Dramas. I am also currently interested in learning more about other cultures, people etc…so I won’t be limited to just Korean. I look forward to reading more. I won’t be so damm wordy next time. Cheers!

  6. Fergus Says:

    G’day Craig, We’ve just had a family member join the K League. I’m looking for english language forums / websites to stay across his games and I’m hoping you may remember a few you’d recommend? I appreciate any help you can offer. Cheers, Fergus.

  7. Lex Says:

    hey mate, LONG LONG time!! so i was curious about ur tour and stephan’s tour. How many stadiums in Korea did you end up getting to visit? Did u hit every active stadium? And do you remember the name of Stephan’s blog? I thought the blog was done when you left korea. I enjoy the lower league stuff from around the world so I am going to have to go buy some Korean pitchers and spend a few hours back tracking ur site.


  8. onthetrailofthelionking Says:

    Hi Lex, great to hear from you. I cant remember how many stadiums in total, although I do have records but it was about 80 I think, including the 48 that were active in my last season. I ticked off the final stadium about a week before I left. I think Stephan’s blog name had something to do with ‘the 49’ which was the number of teams including the Police team that didn’t have their own ground. Are you still in Korea? And you a right, La Granja’s kit really is amazing. I looked for a club shop to buy one but sadly couldn’t find one.

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