Ahn to hang up his boots

Korea Republic legend Ahn Jung-Hwan, famous for his dramatic goal against Italy in the 2002 FIFA World Cup™, is to retire next week.

In a press release quoted by Yonhap news agency, his agency, Moro Sports Korea, said Ahn would hold a press conference Tuesday to announce his decision.

"Ahn returned from Dalian Shide in the Chinese Super League this year, and he was torn between continuing his career and retirement," the agency said. "He has finally decided it would be best for him to finish his career at this point."

Ahn is best remembered for scoring the extra-time goal in Korea Republic's 2-1 win over Italy in the round of 16 at the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan. Korea Republic, the co-host with Japan, reached the semi-finals that year in its best-ever placing in the competition.

At the 2006 event in Germany, Ahn scored to help South Korea beat Togo 2-1 in the group stage, its first victory in a FIFA World Cup on foreign soil. Ahn made his professional debut with the Busan Daewoo Royals in the domestic K-League in 1998. He has also played in Italy, Japan, France and Germany.

Ahn returned to the K-League with the Suwon Samsung Bluewings in 2007 and rejoined Busan in 2008, before signing with Dalian in 2009 for a three-season stint.