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The #KLeagueFM18 Challenges: Citizens Unite - Part 13



With the disappointing comeback collapse that ended in a 4-4 against Seongnam in front of a bumper crowd of 7,921. Still fresh in the minds of the players, morale is lower than most K-2 attendances. It only gets worse when news filters around that Asan Mugunghwa have beaten Ansan 2-1. The title is Asan's and now with a home game left can we rally back to maintain our 2nd place for the playoff-by.



Previous Installments: Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7 Part 8 
Part 9 Part 10 Part 11 Part 12



Title Hopes

With hopes of a first season silverware dashed after the away game at Seongnam, it's taken a toll on the players mentally. Ho-Jun who wanted a guarantee of promotion has started a ruckus but luckily after a one on one chat he's confident of our chances in the playoff. He wasn't the only player who needed a chat, an emergency team meeting was called to screw their heads on for the last home game of the regular season coming in less than 6 days.

With Ansan being last placed in the league and with only 3 wins all season, we can't afford to slip up due to depression of title hopes. It was always going to be a big ask of winning automatic promotion in the first season, but now that we got so close we deserve to not let down the Daejeon faithful.

In brighter news, Pohang who knocked us out in the Quarter finals got through and our now going to play Jeonbuk for the FA Cup trophy. At least we lost to the possible winners.


Ansan Home 10th of the final 10

Ansan have been a horrid team all season, and with us only losing 7 games out of 35 so far we statistically the hardest team to beat all year. On the other hand out of those 7 loses, 6 of those came at home so we've not really been a fortress. Due to Ansan's poor form and nothing to play for, the team lineup is going to be heavily switched around with all eyes on the playoffs. 

The midfield is the most changed with Sung-Su starting on the left of three, with youngster Kang Yun-Seong being the attacking option from the middle. Twenty 21 year old Jae-Woo is coming back in at CB after his calamity back pass and returning army boy Hyun-Seong is filling in for Rae-Se. 

Kick Off

Chan-Hee has a golden opportunity in the 5th minute, went a lofted cross finds him at the back post but it looks like he's on his holidays as he lazily volleys it over the bar. The ball is in the net! It's the youngster Kang Yun-Seong who toe pokes it in at the near post. 1-0 Daejeon, a terrible, terrible refereeing decision as the goal is chalked off for an apparent push in the box off the ball. Kang is in a rage, would of been a lovely moment for the youngster still 0-0.

It's no wonder why Ansan are bottom of the league, they cause their own downfall as two miss tackles in a matter of minutes on Chan-Hee leads to him getting the entire right side of the pitch to whip a perfect ball in. There to meet the ball is Chang-Hyun who swipes the ball into the open goal for this time 1-0 Daejeon in the 14th.  

Ansan look completely out of this game, with only 30% of the ball and 1 shot in 40 minutes that was closer to the dugout than the goal we are slowly grinding out the win. Half time comes around and with the winning position, we look to make more changes with the playoff in mind.

Rae-Se comes on for match sharpness, also a goalkeeper change because of player complaints. The players are told to pass the ball around confidently and adventurously, with 2nd place all but confirmed we might as well try to entertain the fans.

2nd Goal for Daejeon Citizens against the downtrodden Ansan team. 


The second goal of the match sees us go 2-0 up, it's picture perfect of the first goal but this time with his head at the near post. We look comfortable in this game, slowly crawling our way to 3 points and a 2nd place finish in the regular season.

The game is winding down and the fans are starting to cheer, we might not of met our personal expectations but with the season aim of 5th being smashed, the fans are proud. Among the cheers and celebrations, the only shot of the game on target for Ansan is netted into the corner of the goal. 91st minute and Kyung-Ho hits a crisp consolation goal for 2-1.

The regular season is over and we have managed to finish 2nd place in the league. It has been a a victorious season.

Final league table, Asan Title winners, Daejeon Citizens second, Busan third and a lucky Gyeongnam hold 4th. 



18 Days till Playoff Final

With time on our hands before our match against either Busan or Gyeongnam, we have time to reflect on our season as a whole. 

Some stats from our regular season: 

  • 47% win rate of 17 games out of 36.
  • 80.5% Unbeaten over the 36 games. 
  • Scoring 61 goals and Conceding 44, the least goals conceded in the entire league. 
  • Moon Chang-Hyun our regular season top scorer with 17 goals not bad for 53k.
  • A average home attendance of 2,401.
  • Fastest goal 18 seconds of Moon Chang-Hyun vs Seongnam. 
  • Highest scoring victory- 4-1 vs Busan.
  • Highest scoring loss- Joint 4-3 losses to Suwon and Asan.

Busan play at home to a Gyeongnam side who are without Marcao, after 10 minutes Gyeongnam take the lead with Young-Jun shot into the bottom corner. The Busan team bounce back and score an equalizer that takes the game to 1-1. With the K League rules Busan advance after sitting back and defending the draw for 60 minutes. Disgraceful rule but it means we face Busan. 


Busan at Home Playoff Final

The players look filled with nervous energy, some bad news was told to the Daejeon staff 3 hours before kick off. Our new signing and best defender Jeon Je-Woon has been called up for his military service, luckily he won't leave till after playoffs at least but it will be a massive blow if we do get promoted. This changes our entire transfer policy for next season but we will think about that later. 
If we win we then need to beat the Classic team of Daegu. With Incheon automatically relegated and Seoul winning the title by 15 points clear, who needs Hwang?


gfg.jpg
Kim Dong-Sub the top goalscorer in the league is back at Busan just in time to play us.

Our main lineup is back, with Gwan-Pyo and Chan-Hee and the top goalscorer Chang-Hyun looking to shine here. 

Kick Off 

We win and go through to play Daegu if we can hold for just a 0-0, but the 3,000 odd fans aren't here for that. We will try and play the same system we have played all year, dominate possession and beat them through collective skill. 

Emergency in 5 minutes, as Gwan-Pyo is stretchered off and immediately sent to hospital he looks completely wiped out and won't be playing anymore this season. After impressing in the last game, the youngster Kang Yun-Seong is warming up and being put into the pressure cooker. 

Busan are piling on the pressure, with constant shots and crosses being piled onto our back line, they're with standing the pressure, a fierce shot by Romulu is well met by Su-Hyun who managers to fingertip it wide. After the injury to Gwan-Pyo we look poor going forwards, being constantly penned in by Busan. Although 0-0 does see us through this amount of pressure isn't going to hold forever. 

Half time rolls around and it's been all Busan, we look second best the 18 days rest looks more like 18 day's rust. Motivational speak from our coaching staff and shift around of individual roles means we head out to the second half still winning overall. 

The goal for Busan to take the lead 1-0 in the 54th. 

Busan take the lead with a shot across the goal from a great run and poor defending, we have been really poor so far in the game but with changes about to be shouted at every single player, we have some hope of getting a comeback.

60TH Minute! It's the immediate response, after shouting fear into them all, Rae-Se finds open space and he picks his head up to cross in a peach of a ball to Chan-Hee who does the business 1-1! What a comeback from our captain fantastic. 

It's that man again, Jin-Gyu runs past our LB, he calming waits for Su-Hyun to reach for a side early. He puts it the opposite side and it's 2-1 Busan. The goal are coming thick and fast, we look like we are getting knocked out here. The defence just can't contain Jin-Gyu.

A fight breaks out between Kang Yun-Seong and Romulu and both get yellow carded for their part in the argument, they both went two footed into a tackle. Luckily no one got hurt and we can play on, with 20 minutes left to salvage a 2-2 progression. 

Oh my god, 86th minute and it's that one two combo again, this time it's Chan-Hee who beats his marker and his looping ball bounces past the Busan CB, who can't reach and storming in at the back post is Rae-Se who prods home for 2-2. The fans are going ballistic! With only 8 minutes left to play we look set for Relegation Playoff!

Dae-Hoon is brought into the game for Chang-Hyun, his first touch is so close to guaranteeing us the win, as he scoops a bouncing ball onto the Busan post. The fans are breathless like me, that would of secured us the win. 

This is....outrageous, a long ball up the field is touched down by the Busan striker and it's smashed into the goal from at least 30 yards. The bar is shaking and so am I. 91st minute and we look set to be knocked out by a thunderbolt.




Everything is going forward with only three minutes left on the clock, the kitchen sink and the RB and LB are being flung forwards as advanced wingers. We look rocked to our core, Busan have took a deserved lead. 

The Busan players are just sitting back and booting the ball into the stands, I can't believe we are going to be knocked out after that screamer.

The place is really rocking now, it's the 94th! Dae-Hoon has scored the equalizer with the last kick of the game, the sub bench is running to congratulate him, even Gwan-Pyo from hospital might be on his way back. We are going into the Promotion playoff!!!! Who said the draw means home team goes through was a bad rule? 

Dae-Hoon with a poachers finish after Chan-Hee desperately tries to equalize. We still have the chance for first season promotion.


TL:DR

We have managed to scrape by with a incredible 6 goal of a second half, with a last gasp winner and a thunderbolt. The Busan match was incredibly entertaining for all 3,214 who attended. The most of any Home game all season. We head into the promotion playoff verses Daegu for a chance of K-League 1 football. That was one of the most entertaining matches of football in a long long time. 
















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