Writers' Chat: Daegu FC vs Gyeongnam FC
Daegu is set to host Gyeongnam FC, taking the lead of the Challenge, on this Wednesday. Gyeongnam FC have been the most successful in the Challenge without a defeat while Daegu FC was put on brake by being defeated against Pohang 1-2. So, Daegu need to bounce back and to get morale high ahead of a trip to Jeju this weekend. Meanwhile, Gyeongnam would be hoping to go further to remain unbeaten records and they don’t have anything to lose if they are beaten. Here, our Daegu columnist, Muyeol Jung, and our Gyeongnam columnist, James Edrupt, discuss both teams and give their prediction.
Muyeol Asks James Answers
Muyeol : Gyeongnam have been very good after Kim Jong-boo took up the reins in 2016. Could you tell me about your manager, his tactic and managerial philosophy?
James : He had a bit of a tough start to his managerial reign last season, with a -10 point deduction to deal with. He just took it in his stride and got on with the job in hand. He is very attacking minded and is ruthless when it comes to decision making. He often makes substitutions at half time or even earlier if he sees a problem out on the pitch. He has been very fortunate that he has had the luxury of keeping the same back four from week one of the season. None of our defence moved on in pre season. So this takes care of it's self. He and his coaching staff have been focusing on the midfield and attackers and it's working very well so far. We have all new background staff in as well. Our assistant coach Im Wan-Seob came from the very successful Police team (Ansan) last season and his CV speaks high volumes of the man.
Muyeol : Gyeongnam FC have extended an unbeaten record to seven games so far after the season started. Besides, your side only conceded 5 goals from 7 games. What are secrets behind a huge success?
James : Team spirit and togetherness is the best i've seen it at the club since following them. Before the game the players are joking about practicing in their groups etc. The fans are on a high and our expectations have now been set very high with our fantastic start to the campaign. The reason we have hardly conceded any goals is the fact that our keeper is very vocal and he is a great shot stopper and knows his box very well. Plus our defence like I mentioned above have played together for near on 2 years now and know each other game inside out. There is still a long way to go yet this season with Busan, Suwon and co hot on our heels we can't let up. I fear we are a couple of injuries back there though of falling apart somewhat. I hope not!
Muyeol : Even though we secured a promotion spot to the Classic by beating your side 2 -1 at Changwon but we hadn’t fond memories of yours as far as I remembered. Apart from the critical win, we lost two times and had a goalless draw with you. Compared to the last year, what are major changes or progresses you have made in this year?
James : Definitely our signings in pre season have added extra quality to the already good squad of players. Our leading marsman Christian and man assist maker Lee Heo-Seok found pastures new up at Daejeon and we simply had to replace them. We certainly did that in our two Brazilians that we've signed in Bruno and Marcao. Bruno has shown flashes of brilliance at times but needs a little more time to bed in, whereas Marcao has hit the ground running and most if not all of our attacking play comes through him. He is a man mountain and if he stays injury free I am confident he can score 20 goals plus this season for us. We managed to keep the main core of our side together and it's now paying dividends.
Muyeol : Which players should be wary of?
James : The aforementioned Marcao, if he starts of course, as our bread and butter is the league. We have an important fixture against Ansan Greeners this coming Sunday. If he does start or even come off the bench he will cause havoc in and around the Daegu area. Also the man of the moment and one I think will go on to bigger and better things is Jeong Hyeon-Chul our central midfielder #24. He is always in the right place at the right time and has an eye for a pass and scores some very important goals for us. Just as he did against FC Anyang a fortnight ago nodding in the winner in injury time to nick us the 3 points.
I think it'll be won or lost in the midfield this Wednesday. I will go for a narrow 1-0 win for Gyeongnam.
James Asks Muyeol Answers
James : How have Daegu taken to playing in the Classic with all the big teams and big names in and around the league?
Muyeol : The secret to have played well so far would be “togetherness”. Many players, who have gone through our team, frequently said “Daegu feels like a big family” with one mouth. This is the most important values our mananger, Son Hyun-joon, always emphasize.
James : Obviously with the jump up to the Classic you have been able I hope to attract some bigger named players to the club? What have you made of your new signings so far?
Muyeol : I don’t think we have made some big signings so far like Gangwon did. If you ask me, the biggest signing was Cesinha with 3 years full-contract. Currently, he is out of training due to injury but so far, he has scored twice and contributed to our position so much. Another big signing would be Kim Sun-min from Daejeon. Unlike the expectation that he would be joining military sides, he joined us after the desperate love from Mr. Cho, leader of the club. For the last game against Pohang, he was not only very diligent in the midfield area and but also made creative changes several times.
James : Looking at the table now and you are in 8th position. You do like to draw. 3 out of your 6 games have been drawn. How can a team like Daegu turn those draws into wins?
Muyeol : But I thought it would be nice if we keep our concentration tightly till the final whistle. We played very well as far as I think and the only problem was just lack of concentration. Especially, the match against Incheon is a good example. So, if we do not make those kinds of mistakes again, those draws will change into wins.
James : Players to be worried about versus us this Wednesday?
Muyeol : Definitely, I would say Cesinha is very dangerous to your sides, however, his availability is not confirmed so far as he was injured from the game before the last game. Probably, our starting list would be consist of some regular players like Evandro and young players like Kim Kyung-joon, made his debut at last weekend. Evandro will be on top of pyramid to get more goals as he started hunting. Moreover, Kim Kyung-joon also would find more chances to fit in the first squad more regularly.
Statistically, it doesn’t seem like we concede no goal. And our current performance is not that bad, I would like to go for 2-1 win for Daegu.