Saturday 3 December 2016

Swansea midfielder to miss Premier League finale due to mandatory military service

Published 13/05/2016 | 22:56

Swansea midfielder Ki Sung-yueng has returned to his native South Korea to undertake military service
Swansea midfielder Ki Sung-yueng has returned to his native South Korea to undertake military service

Swansea midfielder Ki Sung-yueng has returned home to South Korea to carry out four weeks of military duty.

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Ki will miss Swansea's final Barclays Premier League game of the season against Manchester City on Sunday as he has been granted leave by the club ahead of undertaking his national service.

"There is no Ki this weekend because of his military service," said Swansea manager Francesco Guidolin.

"He has to do four weeks and we want him to have some more time for his holiday."

Every Korean must serve two years' compulsory military service before the age of 29 or face being exiled from the country.

South Korea is technically at war with its neighbours in North Korea, and the divide between the two countries is the most heavily militarized border in the world.

Ki was part of South Korea's bronze medal-winning squad at the London Olympics in 2012 before joining Swansea from Celtic for a then club record fee of £5.5million.

Winning an Olympic medal allowed Ki and his team-mates to have their mandatory two years of military service reduced to four weeks.

Swansea expect Ki, who scored in the 4-1 win at West Ham last weekend, to be back at the club in time for the start of pre-season training at the beginning of July.

Meanwhile, Guidolin could turn Leroy Fer's loan stay from QPR into a permanent deal this summer.

Holland midfielder Fer has made 10 league appearances since joining Swansea in the January transfer window.

"Leroy has been a good surprise," said Guidolin.

"I didn't know him before but he has helped the team in the last part of the season.

"He is a good player and it is possible he stays here.

"I don't know if he wants to stay, I think so, but he could be a good option to stay."

Press Association

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