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Review: Gyeongnam FC 2-1 FC Anyang

Early pace setters Gyeongnam FC welcomed an improved FC Anyang to the Changwon Football Center on a very sunny and pleasant Saturday afternoon. The reds left it late again to snatch all three points in rather controversial circumstances. The Northern outit will feel much aggrieved coming away with nothing to show for their gallant efforts (Photo credit: K League official web site) .

The game started at a very pedestrian pace with both sides showing no real intent to get in and amongst one another.  Lots of nice passing but with no real purpose in the final third.  Anyang grew into the game and from the half an hour mark bossed the contest until the half time break.  The away sides youngster Jung Jae Hee #27 at only 22 years of age, was a constant menace getting into nice pockets in between the defence and midfield and being very direct keeping the back line back to be very focused throughout.  He did get in behind and should have put the purples ahead when one on one with the home sides keeper.  The attacking midfielder contrived to slot the ball past the advancing keeper but it bounced off the left hand post and out to safety.  A huge let off for Gyeongnam.  Both teams went into the changing rooms at the interval with FC Anyang being the happier of the two sides.  In all honesty you couldn't tell which side was leading the league or not. Target man, Marcao had been feeding off scraps in the first forty five minutes and was becoming a frustrated figure up top for the league leaders.

Second half began and all most straight away you could see the intensity of this fixture had come to life and both teams were getting the ball down and attacking with intensity and vigor.  The dead lock was finally broken and rather against the run of play the aforementioned Jung Jae Hee from the long punt up field ran on the ball and with the reds keeper Lee Bum Soo in two minds to stay in his box or come out and clear the ball out, he did neither.  The classy midfielder had the simple task of firing past the shot stopper into the unguarded net.  The leaders 1-0 down and with only 30 minutes to get something from the game.

Anyang were sitting further and further deeper inviting Gyeongnam onto them.  The pressure finally told with just ten minutes left on the clock and the goal came from the spot from the southern outfits leading goalscorer Marcao.  The award of the penalty came with controversy though.  The away teams keeper Kim Min Sik did foul Gyeongnams captain #7 Bae Ki Jeong after he took a touch around him.  But was it preventing an obvious scoring opportunity?  The jury will be well and truely out on this one. To add insult to injury he received his marching orders as well from the referee.  The game was delayed a full six minutes due to the away sides players raging and complaining to the man in the middle and his assistant.  Marcao calmly slotted away the pen past the sub keeper.  1-1 with ten minutes remaining.  Can the league leaders mount another comeback and nick the three points with 11 v 10?  You bet they could!

The fourth official showed 6 minutes of stoppage time and the noise of the crowd increased at this sight.  The home sides wave and wave of attacking pressure finally told when attacking midfielder #24 Jeong Hyeon Chul headed home in the six yard box after a cross evaded all players.  It bounced perfectly into his path and he nodded it past the hapless keeper into the bottom right hand corner.  Bedlam in the stadium.  Fans delirious, players in a huge huddle next to the bench celebrating.  Game over and the 3 points stayed with the southerners.

(Match winner, Jeong Hyeon Chul.  Photo credit - Kleague website)
Gyeongnam remain top with 14 points from 6 games.  Won 4 and drew 2.  Still unbeaten.
They won ugly today and didn't play that well at all.  A good sign or just a bit of luck?  FC Anyang on the other hand remain in 7th place on 6 points.

Next up for the reds is an away trip to play basement dwellers Seongnam next Sunday with a 3pm kick off.  For FC Anyang a home game verses fellow strugglers Seoul Eland awaits, the same day also with a 3pm kick off.

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