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Recap: Seoul E-Land 1 - 1 Goyang Zaicro

I think I'm going to stop predicting E-Land wins as they only end with me looking a bit stupid. I said in my preview that this one looked like a guaranteed home win so it was almost inevitable that Goyang would manage to pick up only their second point of the season on their visit to Jamsil. In my defence, I did point out that E-Land's home performances tend to be flat especially against 'easier' opposition and that was pretty much exactly what we got. In the end Martin Rennie was throwing everything and the kitchen sink at Goyang to get the win but it was a disjointed looking performance that never really looked like earning all three points.

It could, and really should, have been a different story after Joo Min-kyu netted his first goal of the season after just 6 minutes. Kim Dong-chul somehow found himself in the left-wing position and fed the ball into the space where the Goyang defence should have been for Joo-mes to flick the ball over the keeper and open the scoring.

This should have been the cue for E-Land to step up the pace and overwhelm the opposition but instead, as is all too often the case, the foot came off the gas and Goyang were allowed the opportunity to regroup and come back into the game. It wasn't a huge surprise then when on 19 minutes Mitchell seemed to fluff a clearance and Kim Sang-joon pounced to rocket a shot past Glory. In fairness it was a sharp finish but he should never have been allowed the opportunity.

After that, E-Land really created very little. The use of the ball was very poor and the team resorted to lumping long balls up field for the front three to chase with the midfield being more or less missed out. I remain to be convinced that this front three system is actually working as all three players tend to want to play centrally and as a result there tends to be very little width in the attack. Individually they are all very good players but as a unit it's just not working right now.

The same can probably be said for the midfield. Yoon Sung-yeul was brought back into the middle of the park for this one to replace Kim Chang-wook but it didn't really seem to add much. Kim Dong-chul has been utilised as a holding midfielder so far which seems a bit of an odd one also especially given that Kim Dong-jin and Jeon Min-gwang are being played in the heart of defence alongside Carlyle Mitchell.  At the minute it's leaving Kim Jae-sung with too much to do to try to link attack and defence and encouraging the team to miss out the midfield entirely.

If the 4-3-3 is going to work then I would have thought the full-backs would have to get forward more to provide width but I'm not a fan of Kim Tae-eun based on what I have seen so far and his crossing was woeful on Saturday. On the other side Lee Jae-hoon seems reasonable enough but again his attacking threat seems limited.

As the game wore on Martin Rennie seemed to be getting a bit desperate and both Cho Woo-jin and Ahn Tae-hyun were thrown on to replace the only two recognised midfielders in the side (Yoon and Kim JS) which only seemed to encourage more route one stuff. Even with 7+ minutes of Fergie-time there was never any real danger of E-Land getting a second goal and that's got to be a bit of a worry especially on the back of a similar stumble against Chungju on the opening day. 4 points dropped at home against the two weakest sides in the division is the kind of wasteful form that costs teams promotion at the end of the season. E-Land need to develop a more ruthless streak and fast especially when the early form setters Ansan are banging in 5 against Gyeongnam.

Next up is the FA Cup game against Hwaseong and E-Land will need to play better to avoid embarrassment. The one positive is that it's away from home and the team seem to play better away from the church-picnic atmosphere of Jamsil. It'll be interesting to see whether Rennie changes things up in that one or sticks with the tried and trusted.


 

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