The 48s 2019 – The “Most Visible Foreigner” Award

One of the first rules we at 48 Shades Tower learned as ‘newbies’ in Korea was ‘to survive in Korea never get involved in Korean b******t”, it’s safe to say that down the years a certain Scotsman has probably forgotten said rule but it is something that we – well maybe not Paul – try to apply to K-League too. Picture the scene, its the 95th minute and the away team grabs a vital equalizer against their bitter rivals, the camera pans to the ecstatic band of travelling ultras and there is some pasty, uncoordinated foreigner trying to shoehorn himself into the shenanigans. Urgh!

For many a year, most of 48 Shades shunned such attention-seeking behavior and watched from afar as many a foreigner came, squeezed themselves in only to be spurned and left looking like the weird high school kid who should have stayed home during the school parties, that was until a certain Mancunian staggered his way into the Olympic Stadium in Jamsil for the first time.

The man in question is of course the one and only, self-titled, Big Michael Redmond. The team he follows? The shockingly poor Seoul E-Land.

If 2019 started with an optimistic Michael and a new flag it wasn’t long until it descended into farce and then beyond. A record 5 wins from 36 games would dampen the most passionate of spirits but not that of BMR! As defeat followed defeat Michael traveled further and sang louder and soon even the the most unfriendly of local was singing along and joining in.

As for the songs, well Michael does fancy himself as a bit of a performer and can often be spotted in the local noraebang “singing” a Freddie number or three.

There were trips to Asan, Daejeon, Busan and beyond and there are rumors that there is a bidding war in Changwon right now as they await the first Gyeongnam v Seoul E-Land clash of 2020. And as for a potential BMR visit to Jeju Island…

There were beers, tears, maybe some cheers, even some autographs all along the journey that was the disaster of E-Land’s 2019 season but that one constant was that leery, screaming, flag waving, leopard strip wearing Englishman. Speaking of the leopard strip, it’s been on beaches, on dates, in pubs and even tried to slap a wrestler!! If Michael ever turns supporting E-Land into fame and makes it onto ‘The Masked Singer’ it really won’t be too difficult for the judges to know who it is.

 

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