Andersen's family confirmed the surprising choice, saying that he has already been in North Korea for two weeks.
"It may seem strange, but in North Korea, sport is political, too. Just as it is in other countries. It means a lot for them to win and make a good showing within the international arena," Geir Helgesen, head of the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS) in Copenhagen, told NTB. "They actually played pretty decent football before. They had some ups and downs, but they have shown they are fully capable," he added.
However, Andersen's decision to enlist in the North Korean football squad triggered a negative reaction back home.
"I am very surprised that a Norwegian chooses to accept a job for this regime, for there is no doubt that football is directly subordinated to the government, Amnesty Norway Secretary General John Peder Egenæs, told NRK, arguing that the coach most likely will be used for propaganda purposes.
Norwegian author, historian and former foreign journalist Torbjørn Færøvik argued that Jørn Andersen has quite the task before him.
North Korea sensationally broke into the quarterfinals at the World Cup in 1966 (beating Italy among others), but has not excelled internationally since.
Jørn Andersen's career as a player includes stretches with Norwegian clubs Fredrikstad and Vålerenga, as well as a number of German and other foreign clubs. As a coach, he has headed several clubs, with Austria Salzburg being his latest. Also, Andersen appeared in 27 matches for Norway's national team, scoring a total of five goals.