Son Heung-min has been named South Korea’s top athlete for five consecutive years, but is keen to downplay his star status with his Tottenham Hotspur teammates for fear of having to act as a guide for the whole team during their pre-season tour.
Spurs begin preparations for the Premier League season with a match against K League side in Seoul on July 13 before taking on Sevilla in Suwon three days later.
The London club enjoy huge success in South Korea thanks to their Golden Boot-winning striker and, although Son is looking forward to the matches on the tour, he believes he could have a major role to play in off the field as well as on it.
“I think the guys are wrong. They think I’m a big shot in Korea, and I know all the best restaurants in the country,” Yonhap News quoted Son as saying on Monday.
“I don’t know if I can take care of 50 to 60 people at a time. It’s a lot of pressure on me.
“But since they’re going to visit Korea, I’ll pay the bill.”
Son scored 23 Premier League goals to share the Golden Boot award with Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah last season and the 29-year-old thanked his teammates for their faith in him.
“It was such a happy time,” Son said. “My teammates have supported me a lot…
“Every time I scored, (Eric) Dier would say to me: ‘The Golden Shoe is yours’. I was too far behind Salah at the time. I said: ‘What are you talking about?
“But as I started to close the gap, my teammates said they were excited as well.”
Spurs, who finished fourth last season, start their league campaign at home to Southampton on August 6.