Suwon FC striker Lars Veldwijk may be forced to find a new club after three years in South Korea. The former South African international was arrested on Monday morning for drunk driving in Seoul. The Suwon FC board has reportedly already decided to terminate Veldwijk’s contract.
The striker has not exactly stayed out of trouble. While playing for Dutch side Groningen in 2018, he refused to come on as a substitute — an accusation which he denied — and was demoted to the reserves as a result. A few weeks later, he exposed himself on his girlfriend’s Youtube channel, ensuring his stay in Groningen was a short one.
Veldwijk moved to the K League in January 2020, signing for Jeonbuk Hyundai from Dutch club Sparta Rotterdam. After six months he moved to Suwon FC, then struggling in the second flight of Korea, helping them earn promotion with five strikes. The following season, he finished as the third-best goalscorer in the top flight, scoring 18 goals.
Veldwijk struggled last year, scoring just eight times, but has enjoyed a fine start to this year. Right now he is the fourth-best goalscorer in the league, with nine goals in 22 games. However, Suwon will have to look for more goals elsewhere amidst a close relegation battle — Veldwijk has scored nearly 33% of the club’s goals this season.
Veldwijk is far from the first player to be punished this way. Jeonbuk Hyundai midfielder Takahiro Kunimoto and FC Anyang forward Jonathan Moya have both been released in the past 12 months for similar offenses. Gimcheon Sangmu defender Lee Sang-min was also recently dropped from South Korea’s Asian Cup team because of a drunk driving incident in 2020.