K League 3 on it's way

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It is looking like what is on paper the Korean third league the National League could be disbanded at the end of the season. A decision is expected shortly on what will happen with Korean football as a league pyramid system is looked at being brought in. 

New Leagues

Chung Mong-kyu the chairman of the Korean Football Association made a pledge to build a pyramid league system with promotion and relegation when he was elected as president in 2013.

He was re-elected to this role in 2016 showing his drive to move Korean club football forward was shared by those around him. This was also seen with the introduction of the K League 1 and 2 from the K League Classic and K League Challenge at the start of 2018.

By 2020, the plan is to create a K League 3 and 4, this will include sides now in the National League and K3 League.

The drive to do this is to create a league system that works for clubs throughout the ranks and gives teams a real chance of progression. 

A sign of this is with amateur leagues such as the K7 Shigun-gu League (2016), K6 City League (2017), and K5 National League (2019) being launched helping to create the framework of Korean league systems ranging from 1st to 7th.

To make this structure work there still needs to be things ironed out. From my reading on this, the National League could become the new K League 3 and the K3 the K League 4.

Am unsure too of league sizes and if this will change as this could, of course, see more teams join the K League 2 for example if the ten-team league expanded.

The K League 1 and 2 will remain the two professional leagues in the country and from what I understand sides from the National League could be invited to join and become professional.

Teams in the National League are semi-professional although the players do train full-time, what this does mean is they work on a budget as a semi-professional club.

So for example, if a team like Gangneung City who has impressed in recent Korean FA Cup matches joint the K League 2 they would have limited time to prepare for becoming professional. The worry is this could then have a negative financial implication on the sides joining the new league system.

A decision on what will happen next will be made within the next seven days and we will bring further news once we have it.

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