Ahn Jung Hwan was a former soccer player who played as the second striker on the South Korean national team. He scored three goals in two FIFA World Cups, including a golden goal against Italy. But it’s not just his skills that stole hearts back in the day. Ahn was also heavily popular for his model-like looks.
His long hair and sculpted face gained him an envious amount of fame, almost at par with A-list actors and idols. Even during the days without abundant social media exposure, his visuals caught so much attention that he ended up modeling for multiple brands.
As the original “flower boy” of South Korean soccer, it was only a matter of time before Ahn’s past popularity faced comparison with the similar career trajectory of Cho Gue Sung. Korean netizens got busy discussing whether Ahn would be as popular as Cho if he were at his peak now.
In most discussions, the verdict seemed to be that if Ahn had the push of today’s technological accessibility, his visuals probably would have made people go wild globally. But the man himself has a different opinion.
After his retirement in 2012, Ahn became an entertainer and a sports commentator. He also has a YouTube channel where he often discusses soccer with other guests. In one of those videos, Ahn talked about Cho Gue Sung with presenter Kim Sung Joo. During the conversation, he shared that he feels Cho is much more handsome than him because he has scored more goals than Ahn.
If you are good at soccer, you’re handsome. Since he has now scored two goals, he is more handsome than me.
—Ahn Jung Hwan
Ahn then followed it up by saying, “I was handsome in 2002, Cho Gue Song is handsome now.” But netizens seem to disagree with his opinion about himself.
- “Jung Hwan hyung… I know your heart’s coming from a good place, but there is no player out there who can beat you in terms of looks.”
- “Ahn Jung Hwan’s looks during his peak were not just the best among soccer players but all athletes in our country combined.”
- “Ahn Jung Hwan was Asia’s top.”
- “This is the kind of confidence that can only come from someone who knows they’re the most handsome ㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋ.”
- “How humble of him ㅎ in the legacy of Korean soccer, Ahn Jung Hwan’s looks will always be the one top.”