Former Manchester United midfielder Ji-Sung Park has shed light on a truly unique method of building strength he practiced as a younger – drinking the juice of wild frogs in his native South Korea.
Park spent seven seasons at Old Trafford, winning nine major trophies in the process, and endeared himself to supporters and his manager with his rampant, relentlessly disciplined style in midfield which often proved vital in big games.
He became the first Asian player to win the Champions League and now works as an ambassador for the club alongside heading a foundation aimed at expanding football infrastructure and basic necessities in South Korea.
Speaking in an interview this week, Park revealed that his father would make him drink the juice from wild frogs to boost his energy and strength – a ploy which clearly paid off.
“My father went to catch wild frogs. I was skinny and weak and my father heard their juice would give me size and strength,” he said.
“It tasted very, very bad but I had to drink it because I wanted to be a footballer and everyone said I needed to be bigger and stronger.
“They said it was good for my health to become stronger and I ate everything that would improve my health.”
Frog juice, interestingly enough, has been used historically in a variety of communities for the benefit of health. Blended frog juice is still widely used in Peru and Bolivia, and supposedly can remedy stress, low sex drive, anaemia and chest problems.
Let’s just be thankful that his dad got the right type of frog – the one that, looking back, set him on a path to become one of the most indefatigable workers ever seen at Old Trafford – and not one which would have had poor Ji-Sung seeing things and losing all sense of reality for 12 hours.