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Preview: Gyeongnam FC Vs FC Seoul

Preview: Gyeongnam FC Vs FC Seoul K League 1 Round 11
FC Seoul's first game following the resignation of manager Hwang Sunhong will be the long trip south to Changwon to take on newly promoted Gyeongnam FC The hosts Gyeongnam ended their run of five games without a win with a late victory over Incheon United at the weekend to see The Reds move back up to third following a red hot start to the campaign. Seoul, meanwhile, have just two wins in 10 and are languishing in the lower reaches of the table and in desperate need of a win heading into Saturday's Super Match.
(image via K League)


from Soccerway

Last Time Out

On Sunday, Gyeongnam came from behind twice to win with a late winner against Incheon United at Sungui Arena. Moon Seonmin had Incheon ahead inside nine minutes before Negueba levelled just shy of the half hour mark. Then, just ten minutes later Moon Seonmin bagged his and Incheon's second to see the Durumi regain their lead heading into the break.

However, in the second half Gyeongnam turned the game in its head thanks to a goal by Marcão on 61 minutes, firing in the rebound of his own spot kick that had hit the post, to make it 2-2 before Park Jisoo's 89th minute strike completed The Reds' comeback.

FC Seoul, meanwhile, played out a drab 0-0 draw with Sangju Sangmu at home on Saturday. Sangju had more of the ball in the first period but didn't really test Yang Hanbin in between the sticks for FC Seoul. In the second half, the pendulum swung in the opposite direction with Seoul enjoying more of the ball but just couldn't find a way in on goal.

The K League Coach provides an interesting insight as to why in his assessment of what became Hwang Sunhong's final game in charge of FC Seoul: here.

Previous Meetings

These two sides haven't met since 2014 when all three meetings ended in stalemates. Remarkably, the run of draws stretches back further as the last five encounters between Gyeongnam and Seoul have ended in draws. In September 2014, the most recent, the two sided played out a 1-1 draw at Sangam,  Jin Kyungsun put Gyeongnam ahead on the hour mark before Ko Yohan levelled on 77 minutes.

The last time Seoul made the trip to Gyeongnam, albeit to Gimhae Civic Stadium, Sretenović gave The Reds the lead on 51 minutes before Éverton Santos levelled nine minutes later for Seoul.

A 0-0 draw in Changwon back in August 2013 was the last time Seoul played at Gyeongnam's main home stadium but the last time Seoul beat Gyeongnam wasn't since November 2012, a 3-0 win in Changwon thanks to a brace from Dejan and a goal from Jung Jogook.

Gyeongnam's last win over FC Seoul was in the now-defunct K League Cup in 2011, a 1-0 win in Changwon thanks to a 26th minute Yoon Bitgaram strike. In the league, The Reds' last victory over FC Seoul was in April 2010, Kim Youngwoo bagged a dramatic 90th minute winner to seal the points for Cho Kwangrae's side.

In total, Gyeongnam FC and FC Seoul have faced each other 27 times with Seoul edging the number of wins with 12 compared to Gyeongnam's six and nine draws. Four of Gyeongnam's wins have come at home.

Team News

Negueba will miss out through suspension and so Kunimoto, who was rested for the win over Incheon, is most likely to fill the void left by the Brazilian winger. Marcão may start after coming on and making an impact against Incheon, last season's K League Challenge MVP had been dropped to the bench but may return to the starting eleven on Wednesday. There could also be an appearance for 19-year-old winger Kim Jongjin due to the K League's rule of featuring a player under the age of under 23. The first year professional has been impressing for the reserves.

Gyeongnam have five players who are just one booking away from a one-match ban; midfielder Ha Sungmin, full back Woo Jusung, forward Takahiro Kunimoto, defender Yeo Sunghye and star striker Marcão.

For FC Seoul, Go Yohan is back from suspension after the club's vice captain missed the 0-0 draw with Sangju following an accumulation of three yellow cards. Midfielder Kim Seongjun is a doubt, though, with the former Seongnam man still recovering from a hamstring strain. Fellow midfielders Ha Daesung and Song Jinhyeong also remain major doubts having not featured for Seoul this term through injury.

Full back Park Dongjin, and midfielders Jung Hyeoncheol and Shin Jinho are all on two yellows meaning one more booking would rule them out of Saturday's Super Match.

The Adversary

Gyeongnam go into Wednesday's clash with FC Seoul high on confidence after a truly remarkable comeback win away to Incheon United last Sunday. Former Incheon defender Park Jisoo was the match winner for The Reds when, deep into stoppage time, the 23-year-old hit a superb, athletic strike after a corner was not dealt with properly by the Durumi's defence. The win was made all more special due to the fact that, when trailing 2-1, shortly after the interval Negueba was shown a straight red card for a late studs up challenge on Incheon's playmaker Elías Aguilar.

The introduction of Bae Kijeong and Marcão at the break really put Incheon on the back foot in the second half. Marcão had been dropped from the starting eleven for his indifferent displays of late but certainly made a difference when he came on for the K1 newcomers, holding the ball up very well and he terrorised the shell-shocked Incheon defenders. Bae Kijeong, an experienced player who has played at a host a top clubs, ran the channels superbly and won the spot kick that Marcão missed but tucked away the rebound after it cannoned back off the post.

The Reds showed great character to come back after being in a losing position twice in the game, and a man down for the majority of the second half. It was a great victory at a tough ground to get maximum points from. It is to be expected that Kim Jungboo, the home side's manager, to put out his strongest starting eleven for this game as a few key players were rested on Sunday.

by James Edrupt

Who To Watch

During his assessment for Gyeongnam the K League Coach highlighted Takahiro Kunimoto as a player who could cause sides problems. The 20-year-old's vision and guile as well as his ability to cut in and find space will be something that Seoul's back four will need to be wary of come Wednesday night.

Kunimoto (left) joined Gyeongnam from J.League 2 side Avispa Fukuoka during the winter. (Image via K League)
For FC Seoul, one player in particular who could prove pivotal is central midfielder Shin Jinho. Seoul's number eight possesses a range of passing that no other player in the squad can match. Given the nature of how Gyeongnam play, balls into the channels from deep on the counter attack for Evandro to run on to, or diagonally to the wide areas into the path of Cho Youngwook and co, where space might open up, could be where Seoul could find some joy.

Shin Jinho returned to Seoul in the winter after a 22 months stint with Sangju Sangmu (Image via K League)


Gyeongnam will be buoyed by their comeback win against Incheon that saw The Reds climb back up to third. Seoul have just two wins all season but parted company with manager Hwang Sunhong yesterday, placing Lee Eulyong in caretaker charge until the end of the season. Whether this will have a positive impact on the team's performance remains to be seen but under Hwang, Seoul were becoming predictable and drab to watch. Seoul do have injuries in midfield and may feel hamstrung by certain players who are just a booking away from missing the Super Match. That said, there is enough in this team to get at least a point.

Paul Neat's Prediction: Gyeongnam FC 1-1 FC Seoul

James Edrupt's Prediction: Gyeongnam FC 1-0 FC Seoul

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