South Korean President Moon Jae-in became the country's first leader to watch a national football team match overseas by attending the Taeguk Warriors' 2018 FIFA World Cup clash against Mexico on Saturday.
Moon visited Rostov Arena in Rostov-on-Don to watch South Korea's second match in Group F against Mexico. Moon arrived in Russia on Thursday for a three-day state visit. He had a summit with Russian President Vladamir Putin in Moscow on Friday before flying to the southern Russian city.
|South Korean President Moon Jae-in (3rd from L) and first lady Kim Jung-sook (4th from L) support their national football team at the 2018 FIFA World Cup Group F match between South Korea and Mexico at Rostov Arena in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, on June 23, 2018. (Yonhap)|
With the temperature reaching 30 Celsius degrees in Rostov-on-Don, Moon, donning a red scarf, was cheering for the national football team, with first lady Kim Jung-sook. Other distinguished guests included South Korea's Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, South Korean Ambassador to Russia Woo Yoon-keun, FIFA President Gianni Infantino, Korea Football Association President Chung Mong-gyu and South Korean football legend Cha Bum-kun.
Moon became the first president since the late Kim Dae-jung to watch a World Cup match. Kim, who was South Korea's president from 1998 to 2003, attended four matches at the 2002 World Cup, which was co-hosted by South Korea and Japan.
Kim, who passed away in 2009, watched South Korea's 2-0 win over Poland in their group opener in Busan and the national team's final group stage match against Portugal in Incheon, where they won 1-0. He also attended South Korea's quarterfinal match against Spain in Gwangju, where the hosts went on to advance to the last four on penalties, and the semifinal match that the home side lost 1-0 to Germany in Seoul.
The last time a South Korean president watched an international football match at a stadium was in 2003, when the late Roh Moo-hyun attended a friendly match between South Korea and Japan in Seoul. (Yonhap)
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