K League 2
Organising bodyK League Federation
Founded2013; 9 years ago (2013)
CountrySouth Korea
Number of teams11
Level on pyramid2
Promotion toK League 1
Relegation toK3 League (starting from 2023 season)
Domestic cup(s)Korean FA Cup
International cup(s)AFC Champions League (via Korean FA Cup)
Current championsGimcheon Sangmu
Most championshipsSangju Sangmu (2 titles)
TV partnersSky Sports (South Korea)
Life Sports TV
Current: 2022 K League 2

The K League 2 (Hangul: K리그2) is the men's second professional football division of the South Korean football league system. The league is contested by eleven clubs. It operates on a system of promotion and relegation with the K League 2 and K3 League starting from 2023 season.


Main article: K League

In 2011 the original K League announced a plan to begin a promotion and relegation system between the K League and a proposed second division.[1] The K League then took steps to create the new second division, mainly with the addition of a split-system during the 2012 K-League season in which the bottom clubs are placed in a competition for safety with the last placed club being relegated to the new second division (originally it was going to be two clubs relegated but the withdrawal of Sangju Sangmu FC meant only one would be relegated).[2][3] In the 2013 season, the 13th and 14th teams in the K League Classic were automatically relegated, while the 12th team played a match against the winner of the newly-formed K League Challenge to decide promotion/relegation. From the 2014 season, only the 12th team of the top division is automatically relegated, with the 11th team playing a two-leg match against the winner of the K League 2 promotion playoffs to decide promotion/relegation. The promotion playoffs are as follows: the fourth-placed team plays against the third-placed team, then the winner of this match plays with the second-placed team. If the match is tied, the higher-placed team advances.

On 3 January 2013 the official name of the Second Division was announced as the K League while the original K League was changed to K League Classic along with the new logo.[4] This name change caused some degree of confusion and controversy,[5] and on 11 March 2013 the official name was changed to K League Challenge.[6]

On 22 January 2018 the official name was changed to K League 2.[7]

Current clubs

Club Location Stadium First season Current spell Seasons[a]
Ansan Greeners Ansan Ansan Wa~ Stadium 2017 2017– 5
Bucheon FC 1995 Bucheon Bucheon Stadium 2013 2013– 9
Busan IPark Busan Busan Asiad Main Stadium 2016 2021– 6
Chungnam Asan Asan Yi Sun-sin Stadium 2020 2020– 2
Daejeon Hana Citizen Daejeon Daejeon World Cup Stadium 2014 2016– 7
FC Anyang Anyang Anyang Stadium 2013 2013– 9
Gimpo FC Gimpo Gimpo Solteo Football Stadium 2022 2022– 0 (debut)
Gyeongnam FC Changwon Changwon Football Center 2006 2020– 6
Gwangju FC Gwangju Gwangju Football Stadium 2011 2022– 5
Jeonnam Dragons South Jeolla Gwangyang Football Stadium 2019 2019– 3
Seoul E-Land Seoul Mokdong Stadium 2015 2015– 7
  1. ^ As of the start the 2022 season.


Titles by season

Season Champions Runners-up
2013 Sangju Sangmu Police FC
2014 Daejeon Citizen Gwangju FC
2015 Sangju Sangmu Suwon FC
2016 Ansan Mugunghwa Daegu FC
2017 Gyeongnam FC Busan IPark
2018 Asan Mugunghwa Seongnam FC
2019 Gwangju FC Busan IPark
2020 Jeju United Suwon FC
2021 Gimcheon Sangmu Daejeon Citizen

Titles by club

Club Champions Runners-up Winning seasons Runners-up seasons
Sangju Sangmu
2013, 2015
Ansan Mugunghwa[a]
2016 2013
Gwangju FC
2019 2014
Daejeon Hana Citizen
Gyeongnam FC
Asan Mugunghwa[a]
Gimcheon Sangmu
Jeju United
Suwon FC
2015, 2020
Busan IPark
2017, 2019
Daegu FC
Seongnam FC
  1. ^ a b Ansan Mugunghwa and Asan Mugunghwa are officially two distinct clubs per K League policies.[8]

See also


  1. ^ Richards, Dave. "Korea, England: closer football ties". Korea Joongang Daily. Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2013.
  2. ^ "K리그 31~44라운드, 상주 없이 그대로 진행".
  3. ^ "K League confirm promotion-relegation system". SportsSpying. Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2013.
  4. ^ "K League News". K-League. Archived from the original on 16 February 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2013.
  5. ^ "위원석의 하프타임 'K리그'에 새로운 이름을 붙여주자" (in Korean). The Daily Sports Seoul. 19 February 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-12-11.
  6. ^ "'K리그 챌린지' 프로축구 2부리그 새 이름으로 이번 주말 스타트!" (in Korean). K League official website. 11 March 2013. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04.
  7. ^ "프로축구연맹, 클래식→K리그1, 챌린지→K리그2 대회명 변경" (in Korean). K League Official Website. 22 January 2018.
  8. ^ 프로연맹, 신생팀 안산-아산 가입 승인