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Preview: Seoul E-Land Vs Asan Mugunghwa


It will feel like a great weight has been lifted off the shoulders of many Seoul E-Land players, after last week’s victory against F.C Anyang. The first win for the side in almost eight months can be an indication that this season could be more promising than their 2017 campaign. The game, however, was once again, low on attendance for E-Land and F.C Anyang was unlucky to not come away without a point.

In saying that, the game has finished and three points have been registered in Seoul E-Land’s name, finally. This week, they will play 3rd place side, Asan Mugunghwa. A team in fine form at the beginning of the season, with four wins out of four. Asan went through a bumpy stage, picking up only one point up out of three games. However, all seems back to normal, with a win against Bucheon 1995, ending their perfect record. Last week, also saw them 2-1 winners against Daejeon Citizen. .

(image via facebook.com/Seouleland)

Last Time Out

Seoul E-Land played their Saturday evening showdown with better conditions than what was faced of them two weeks prior against Seongnam. Only a light drizzle was the weather as the two teams took to the pitch. Seoul E-Land looked good in the first half, and was awarded the easiest goal they will score all season. A lack of communication between goalkeeper and defender left Jeon Soo-hyun, slotting the ball into his own net, in an attempt to pass the ball back to the keeper.

Both teams came close in the second half; attempts from Choi Oh-back almost put the leopards, 2-0 up and put the game to bed. Anyang almost spoiled the party late on, as they managed to put the ball in the back of the net, only for the referee to go to VAR and overrule the goal. There was some distance in time between Asan scoring and the referee disallowing the goal. I personally feel the victory felt more special for the fans, as it was actually almost taken away from them.

Asan appeared to have a tighter game when they played away on Saturday, against Daejeon Citizen. They took the lead from a spot kick in the 22nd minute, Kim Min-gyoon the scorer. Daejeon fought back into the game 10 minutes later, and Kim Seung-seop made it level. The winning goal came with some controversy, as reported this week that Daejeon CEO Kim Ho was furious that a foul was not given in the build-up to the goal. Heo Beom-San scored in the 82nd minute to give Asan the win and make it back to back victories for the side. Asan .

Previous Meetings

The first encounter between the two teams in the 2017 campaign saw a 1-1 draw between the two sides in Jamsil. Asan scored in the first half, and E-Land equalizing in the second half. The season also saw Asan Mugunghwa record two home victories against E-Land, coming in the 2nd and 4th time of playing one another. E-Land did manage a 3-2 victory at Jamsil, back in August, in what became a very memorable game.

Choi Oh-back scored a hattrick for Seoul, once from the penalty spot, and a 90th-minute winner, giving E-Land all three points. The win was in the middle of Seoul E-Land’s four-game winning streak and was probably the most memorable of the four. They managed to scrape a 1-0 victory against Gyeongnam before it all went wrong for the side. Prior to last week’s result, that was their last win. Almost eight months ago.


The Adversary

Asan Mugunghwa, have a long history and almost too many names to remember for the one preview alone. It is a military team, with players serving two years military service for Korea. Originated in 1996, their first name was Police FC, all the way until 2013. In 2014, they changed their name to Ansan Police FC for a couple of years before having the name Ansan Mugunghwa in 2016.

In 2017, the team moved out of the Gyeonggi province, moving further down south to the city of Asan, in the South Chungcheong province. The move inspired their current name, Asan Mugunghwa. For the name, Mugunghwa, it means the hibiscus syriacus flower, the symbol of the Korean police, nice touch and a unique name to say the least.

In regards to the league its self, Asan has been successful in recent years. When under the name Ansan Mugunghwa, they actually won the 2016 league. Promotion would usually beckon, but due to their military status, they remained in the second division. Their first season in Asan saw them finish a respectable 3rd place, and ended the campaign with a 3-0 defeat against Busan I’Park, in the playoffs.

Prediction

The game on Sunday will hopefully be an entertaining one and hopefully, with a higher attendance. Seoul E-Land can finally breathe, and relieve pressure after getting their first three points. Asan will hope to continue their good form as of late and try not to go back into losing ways. The game should see some pretty end-to-end action, and E-Land has stood tall against most of the top sides so far this year. Once again, being at home, but knowing how good Asan can be, I can see this being straight down the middle. .

Seoul E-Land 1-1 Asan Mugunghwa

As a quick side note, this will have to be the first game I will miss this season. Having been granted a Friday off, and not leaving Korea in almost a year, the last minute weekend to Japan is on the cards. I will try to keep updated the best I can, and hopefully be sipping on Japanese larger after another E-Land win on Sunday evening.

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