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Korean volleyball star to choose between Chinese, Turkish leagues for next season

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Published : 2017-05-08 16:12
Updated : 2017-05-08 16:12

South Korean volleyball star Kim Yeon-koung said Monday she will either stay in Turkey or move to China for next season.

Kim, considered one of the world's best attackers today, returned home after leading Fenerbahce to the Turkish league championship for the 2016-17 season. She has been playing with Fenerbahce since 2011.

South Korean volleyball player Kim Yeon-koung poses for a photo during a press conference at Incheon International Airport in Incheon on May 8, 2017. (Yonhap)

Speculation has been rising recently about Kim's next destination as she will become a free agent. Kim said she will deeply consider her future, although she has narrowed down her choices to China and Turkey.

"I will try to make my decision this week on which team I should play for next season," Kim said to reporters after landing at Incheon International Airport. "I will think as carefully as I can."

Kim said her current club Fenerbahce is on her list, but she will look into offers from other clubs as well. The former European Volleyball Confederation Champions League MVP added that money is not the only thing that she will consider when signing a contract.

"You need to think about the competitiveness of the league and the conditions of the contract," she said. "It also needs to comply with the national team schedule."

Kim said Chinese clubs are approaching her with good financial conditions. Some volleyball media outlets reported that the 29-year-old spiker now could be worth $3 million, but Kim said she isn't that expensive.

"I know I have limited choices because there are not enough teams to cover my big salary," she said. "Both Chinese and Turkish teams are making good offers."

Kim said she will rest during her stay in South Korea while casting her vote in the presidential election on Tuesday. She will then join the South Korean women's national team for upcoming events.

Kim, who previously played with South Korea's Heungkuk Life and Japanese side JT Marvelous, will play in a special match in Bangkok next month that features South Korea and Thailand volleyball stars.

She will train with the national team for the FIVB Volleyball Grand Prix that starts in July.

"Actually, I'm really tired at this moment," she said. "While taking a rest here, I will meet the national team coach and will try to recover my fitness." (Yonhap)