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K League's reigning MVP ruled out for 4-6 weeks with ankle injury

16:00 June 29, 2020

SEOUL, June 29 (Yonhap) -- Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors' midfielder Kim Bo-kyung will miss up to six weeks of action with an ankle injury, his K League 1 club announced Monday.

Kim suffered the injury on a violent tackle by Ulsan Hyundai FC defender Kim Kee-hee in the 24th minute of their match on Sunday. Following a video review, Kim Kee-hee was sent off with a direct red card for his foul, and Kim Bo-kyung was stretchered off the field and replaced by Murilo Henrique.

Kim Bo-kyung of Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors writhes in pain after getting tackled by Kim Kee-hee of Ulsan Hyundai FC during the clubs' K League 1 match at Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium in Ulsan, 400 kilometers southeast of Seoul, on June 28, 2020. (Yonhap)

Jeonbuk said Monday Kim was diagnosed with a partial ligament tear in his left ankle. He'll need four weeks to heal and another two or so weeks to work himself back into shape.

Kim was voted the league MVP last season while playing for Ulsan, and he joined Jeonbuk over the offseason for his second tour of duty.

Kim has yet to record a goal or an assist with Jeonbuk, but the three-time defending champions are sitting atop the league table with 24 points from eight wins and a loss. They are four points ahead of Ulsan.

Jeonbuk should have enough depth in midfield to survive without Kim, with Takahiro Kunimoto, who netted Jeonbuk's second goal in Sunday's victory, expected to shoulder the bulk of the playmaking role from the middle.

Kim Bo-kyung of Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors is stretchered off with an ankle injury after getting tackled by Kim Kee-hee of Ulsan Hyundai FC during the clubs' K League 1 match at Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium in Ulsan, 400 kilometers southeast of Seoul, on June 28, 2020. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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