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Preview: Asan Mugunghwa Vs Daejeon Citizen

Preview: Asan Mugunghwa Vs Daejeon Citizen
Daejeon Citizen make their second and final trip to Yishunsin Stadium of the season to take on league leaders Asan Mugunghwa. Citizen make the short trip on the back of a disappointing 2-0 home defeat to Suwon FC and so will be looking to make amends. The Purples won the first meeting in Asan this season so an away win isn't wholly out of the question. Asan Mugunghwa, though, are six games unbeaten with four wins and two draws and haven't lost at home since mid-May, coincidentally against Daejeon.
(image via K League)

Overview

From Soccerway

Last Time Out

On Monday night Daejeon suffered their first ever home defeat to Suwon FC, losing by two goals to nil at Purple Arena. Jung Woogeon put the visitors 1-0 up just before half time after firing home from 10 yards out, picking up a ball drilled across goal by Bruno from the right hand-side. The score remained 1-0 at the interval but midway through the second period Suwon were awarded a penalty. Daejeon skipper Ahn Sanghyeon was adjudged to have handled the ball on the ground whilst challenging in the box, the referee consulted VAR and the spot kick was awarded. Jung Woogeon stepped up but Daejeon 'keeper Lim Minhyeok saved his third penalty of the season, diving low down to his right to parry the ball away for his third penalty save of the season.

Suwon did eventually get a second goal, Lee Jae-ahn on his return from military service with the decisive blow. The 30-year-old striker flicked the ball into the path of Bruno who then played a quick one-two to Lee on the edge of the box, the finish was sublime and was enough to see Suwon FC move up a place and Daejeon drop to eighth.

Highlights: here

Asan Mugunghwa picked up a comfortable 2-0 away win over Ansan Greeners to maintain their place at the top of K League 2 on Saturday. Kim Minkyun, on loan from FC Anyang, put the police team in front on 21 minutes, heading in Cho Sungjun's cross from the right-hand side into the far corner. If Asan's first goal was well-worked then the second was a work of art. Ju Sejong, who famously laid on the assist for Son Heungmin's goal against Germany in the World Cup, was at it again with more crisp passing, this time an expertly hit cross-field pass towards Hwang Inbeom. The on-loan Daejeon starlet then whipped the ball across to the far post where it was met by Lee Myeongjoo to make it 2-0. Ansan sixth, Asan remain top by a point.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

An Ahn Sanghyeon goal was enough to separate these two sides in the most recent meeting back in May, which give Daejeon Citizen an unlikely away victory. When it was Daejeon's turn to host however, Asan came away with all three points in a 2-1 win, a spot kick from Kim Minkyun on 22 minutes was cancelled out by Kim Seungseop for the Purples, his first for the club. However, a controversial Heo Beomsan goal in the 83rd minute sealed the win for Asan.

Since the police team moved to Asan and was re-branded as Asan Mugunghwa, these two sides have only met on six occasions and are equally matched with two wins each and two draws. Overall, Daejeon have come up against a police team of sorts on 14 occasions but have won just four times and only two away from home.

Team News

Asan Mugunghwa are likely to field Park Juwon in between the sticks in what will be only his second league appearance for Asan since joining last season after being Park Hyunsoon's understudy before he returned to Suwon FC. Another Daejeon player who is expected to feature is Hwang Inbeom, the youngster who is in his first year of military service, laid on an assist for Lee Myeongjoo's goal in the 2-0 win over Ansan at the weekend and could keep his place in the starting lineup. However, midfielder Kim Dohyuk is suspended after picking up his third caution of the season against Ansan at the weekend.

For Daejeon, long term injury will keep goalkeeper Kim Jinyoung out, Lim Minhyeok should deputise once again after another sterling performance on Monday night. Former Seongnam goalkeeper Park Junhyeok was brought in and named as a substitute for the defeat to Suwon and may be called upon should manager Ko Jongsoo feel wholesale changers are needed. Club captain and defensive midfielder Oh Jangeun is a doubt and whilst the Purples have no suspensions of which to speak of, forwards Park Inhyeok and Aurelian Chițu, as well as midfielders Ahn Sanghyeon, Park Suchang and Park Sooil are all just one more yellow away from a one-match ban.

The Adversary

Asan Mugunghwa are the current league leaders in K League 2 and, given the quality the team possesses in midfield in particular, it is of little surprise. Lee Myeongjoo, Ju Sejong and Hwang Inbeom, for example, were all in involved in Asan's second goal against Ansan Greeners at the weekend, the former finishing off some excellent passing from the latter two. Asan have lost just twice at home this season, making the Yishunsin Stadium quite the fortress.

Since the World Cup break, Asan have lost a few players, however. Top scorer Han Euikwon returned to Daejeon before being transferred to K League 1 giants Suwon Bluewings, goalkeeper Park Hyunsoo and forward Lee Jae-ahn both returned to Suwon FC, captain Lee Changyong to Ulsan Hyundai, and Lee Euddeum to Gwangju. However, if Saturday's comprehensive win over Ansan Greeners is anything to go by, the police team should be able to cope without them.

Asan Mugunghwa Starting XI Vs Ansan Greeners (2-0W). Image via K League

During Asan's unbeaten run of six games, gaffer Park Donghyuk has opted for either a 4-1-4-1 or a 4-1-2-3 formation. The 4-1-4-1 system has been used for wins over Seoul E-Land and Seongnam as well as during the two stalemates with Busan IPark and Gwangju. When Coach Park opted for a 4-1-2-3 his team have picked up wins against Ansan Greeners (as above) and Suwon FC. The last time these two sides met, Asan lined up in a 3-4-3.

Who To Watch

Ju Sejong (L) is in his first year of military service. (Image via K League)
Ju Sejong was actually named amongst the substitutes for Asan's 2-0 win over Ansan but came on in the 58th minute for Kim Minkyun. Ju Sejong was of course part of the Korean National Team World Cup squad and so the decision to name the on-loan Seoul man as a substitute was perhaps down to fitness reasons. However, as Ju Sejong often does, he entered the field of play and displayed the range of passing that Busan IPark fans and FC Seoul fans became accustomed to. There are few players in K League 1, let alone K League 2, that have a range of passing quite like Ju Sejong and will definitely be one to watch during Sunday's match.

Prediction

Daejeon's glass half full, with three games unbeaten, is now looking more like a glass half empty following the defeat to Suwon FC on Monday. The Purples have only one defeat in five but can only boast of one win during that time. Saturday's trip to the league leaders will be as tough as it gets for Ko Jongsoo's men and will perhaps feel lucky if they escape the Yishunsin Stadium with even a draw.

Asan Mugunghwa 3-1 Daejeon Citizen




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