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FC Seoul 1-0 Incheon: A Recap

Wow!  How things change so quickly.  It was a great night for FC Seoul after yesterday's fixtures.  Ulsan, Jeonnam, Seongnam, and Seoul's opponent Incheon, who were all ahead of Seoul in the table lost, so they jumped four places from tenth into the top six.

Also, that is now six league games without a loss.  Seoul, I would hesitate to say, seem to be rounding into form.  They still continue to struggle to score and much of the reason that Seoul's defense keeps clean sheets is down to the ineptness of their opponents, but that cannot really be blamed on them.  Again, apply whatever cliche you want about taking chances that your opponent gives you, etc.

Last night's game, while not one for the ages, was certainly an important victory.  Seoul lined up in a 3-5-2 formation, but I was wrong about Molina and Everton playing.  Jung Jo-gook, Go Yo-han, and Ko Kwang-min started as Yun Ju-tae, Yun Il-lok, and Kim Chi-woo moved to the bench.  I was surprised to see Park Chu-young start again since he played on Sunday.  I thought Choi Soo-yong would give him a rest for Saturday's game, but I guess not.

As with most of Seoul's games this year, they started slowly.  I do not know why this continues to be the case.  This is something that Choi and his staff really should look at.

In the 3rd minute there was a FIFA moment.  Anyone who plays the game will know what I mean.  Seoul's keeper, Yu Sang-hun rolled the ball out wide to Kim Dong-woo, who passed it short to Koh Myong-jin.  Koh Myong-jin was pressed by an Incheon player, so he passed it back to Kim Dong-woo, whose heavy touch knocks it into path of an Incheon player.  From there, Park Yong-woo horrifically mishit his clearance and it fell gloriously to Incheon forward Lee Seung-woo.  He really should have done better and tried to have a shot first time instead of taking a touch.  Instead, Seoul were able to clear and no harm was done.

The moment of the match arrived early.  In the 16th minute, Jung Jo-gook scored of a calamitous defensive error.  Jung Jo-gook nominally pressed the defender, but the defender panicked and passed back to his keeper.  He did not put enough on the pass, so Jung Jo-gook was able to easily intercept the pass and score.  The keeper came off of his line, but he could only get a foot on the ball and it popped back into Jung Jo-gook's path and it was an easy tap in.  From there, Seoul hung on to win.

It really was a fortuitous goal.  What the hell was the defender thinking?  Why did he not just clear it?  Do they not teach the mantra of "safety first"?

Afterwards, Seoul attempted to do what they do not excel at this year- defend a lead and hit on the counter.  In the 31st minute, another ball over the top caught the Seoul defense napping.  This seems to be a recurring theme.  Ball over the top and a half chance.  Seoul are lucky that they are not being punished.

The keeper, Yu Sang-hun did well to come off of his line and clear it.  The clearance itself was horrific as got next to nothing on the ball, but there was no Incheon player around to punish his poor kick.  However, in the 44th minute, Yu Sang-hun did well to get down and stop a shot from Kim Dae-kyung and he was quite strong in the 48th minute, fisting a ball away from a dangerous free kick.

In the beginning of the year, I was not convinced about him as a keeper, especially after the Seongnam debacle.  However, I am starting to come around.  He still does not fill me with confidence, but he has been better than Kim Yong-dae this year.  He seems to give a shit and move off his line, where as Kim Yong-dae remained rooted on his, afraid of leaving for fear of a queue jumper taking his spot.

Continuing this season's theme, Seoul pushed the action more in the second half and were better.  They did not really create any chances of note other than an Osmar header on a corner though.  That being said, Jung Jo-gook looked really spry this game.  He was running a lot and even tried a scissors/bicycle kick.  It is good to see that from him.  Maybe, with Park Young-chu rounding into shape, they could form a good partnership and begin to score some goals.

I remain convinced that two up front is the way to go.  Outside of Kim Hyun-sung and Park Hee-seong, they do not have a big man who can play up front alone.  However, I feel as though neither of these two offer anything more than size though.  On a different note, I am not a fan of three in the back, but I understand why Choi chooses to play this way, especially considering that neither Kim Chi-woo nor Ko Kwang-min are natural full backs.

On Saturday, Seoul travel to Jeonju to take on the league leaders Jeonbuk.  If they want to make a statement of intent, this would be a great time.  A victory would serve to do that well.

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