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Preview: Daegu FC Vs FC Seoul

FC Seoul's Evandro and Daegu FC's Cho Hyunwoo.
Daegu FC and FC Seoul will resume their K League seasons following the World Cup break when the two sides meet at Blue Arc on Sunday evening. The hosts, Daegu, welcome Seoul whilst propping up the K League 1 table, two points adrift of Incheon. Meanwhile, FC Seoul make the long trip south on the back of a run of just one win in six prior to the break during which Lee Eulyong's men found the net just four times. A win for Seoul wouldn't be enough to see them leapfrog Pohang in eighth but would certainly help kickstart their season. Daegu, meanwhile, will have Cho Hyunwoo between the sticks and could prove to be a tough test for the likes of Evandro and co. following his World Cup heroics. A win could lift Daegu off the bottom of the table.
(image via K League)


from Soccerway

Last Time Out

Ahead of the World Cup break, Daegu FC travelled to the south coast to clash with relegation rivals Jeonnam Dragons on the back of six defeats in a row. The hosts, Jeonnam, were sitting just two places above Daegu so it was a very good opportunity for Andre Gaspar's men to narrow the gap.

Daegu approached this game very cautiously by sitting deep and putting the ball in behind the Dragons' defensive line to make the best use of Cesinha and Kim Kyungjun's pace. During the first half, the two created a few critical chances but were unable to find the target. Partly thanks to Cho Hyunwoo’s fine saves at the other end of the pitch, the scoreboard remained unchanged at half time. 

The deadlock was finally broken after Jeonnam manager Yoo Sangchul decided to put Heo Yongjun on to replace Park Joontae. His decision was almost instantly justified as, within just two minutes, Heo Yongjun eliminated the entire right side of Daegu’s defence by feinting away for Kim Jinhyuk to fire onto the far post. The ball went over goalkeeper Cho Hyunwoo's hands and into the goal, helped by a deflection off of Hong Jungwoon’s calf.

After conceding the opener it looked like the hosts were about to go on and claim three three points. However, in the stoppage time, a long ball from Cho Hyunwoo was was hit straight into the path of Park Hanbin who rushed into the ball and made it 1-1. A vital point the road meant that Daegu managed to prevent the gap between them and their relegation rivals from widening and kept their hopes alive.
-Muyeol Jung

Highlights: here

FC Seoul headed into the World Cup break rather unceremoniously after crumbling to a 4-0 defeat to rivals Jeonbuk Hyundai at home. The first half produced little of note and so the two K League giants went in at the interval level at 0-0. However, just after the hour mark, Lee Jaesung put Jeonbuk ahead before a mad last 10 minutes, which saw Seoul ship three goals, compounded a miserable afternoon for Lee Eulyong's men. A Kwak Taehwi own goal on 82 minutes made it 2-0 before Lim Sunyoung added a third two minutes later. The evergreen Lee Donggook, on a substitute, made it four with superbly hit strike on 88 minutes to cap off an emphatic win for Choi Kangee's men. The result rendered the capital club ninth in the table but are only four points away from the top six.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

These two teams last met in April at Sangnam where it was FC Seoul who picked up all three points with a 3-0 victory. Former Daegu striker Evandro, Go Yohan, and an own goal from Kim Jinhyeok rounded up the scoring for Seoul. Seoul haven't lost to Daegu in their last three, however a 2-1 win in April 2017 remains Daegu's last win over Seoul. On that afternoon, Evandro was donning the sky blue of Daegu and bagged a brace to give the then-newly promoted side a 2-0 lead. Park Chuyoung pulled a goal back with a spot kick on 82 minutes but the veteran's strike proved to be scant consolation.

At Daegu, Seoul have lost just four times and have just two defeats to Daegu in their last 10 meetings in total. Overall, from the 32 meetings between these two teams, Seoul have 16 wins whilst Daegu have eight.

Team News

During the World Cup break, Daegu FC have added some new blood to the squad by bringing in Ze Roberto, Edgar, Cho Sukjae and Tsubasa in to replace outgoing Brazilian duo Jean and Caion. Dasegu's recent acquisitions are expected to feature come Sunday but captain Han Heehoon and Kim Jinhyuk are both suspended. However, Korea National team’s new guardian, Cho Hyunwoo is expected to feature this weekend. According to Daegu FC, the 26-year-old returned training on 5th July.

For FC Seoul, recent acquisition Yun Sukyoung could be inline to make his debut. The former Korean international left back signed on loan from J.League 1 side Kashiwa Reysol recently to compete for the left full back spot along with Shim Sangmin and Park Dongjin. 

The World Cup break will also have allowed the likes of midfield trio Ha Daesung, Song Jinhyung, and Kim Seongjun to recover from their respective injuries. Whilst the latter, former Seongnam defensive midfielder Kim Seongjun, is said to be back in full training following a hamstring problem, it is unknown as to when former skipper Ha Daesung will return and remains conspicuous by his absence. Song Jinhyung played in a reserve game on Tuesday against Ansan Greeners Reserves and is said to be nearing a return to first team action. 

In terms of suspensions, Hwang Kiwook will be forced to sit out after the young midfielder received his third yellow of the campaign during the 4-0 home defeat to Jeonbuk. However, full back Park Dongjin is available again after serving his one match ban but may have to watch from the bench should Yun Sukyoung make his FC Seoul debut.

Go Yohan will captain the side after caretaker manager Lee Eulyong named the one-club man as the club's new skipper, whilst centre back Lee Woonghee may re-enter the fold after being appointed as the club's new vice captain.

The Adversary

During the break, Daegu travelled down to Namhae for a training camp where they went to work on ironing out the problems within their defence as well as and strengthening the attack. During the training camp, the team's new blood, the likes of Ze Roberto, Edgar, Cho Sukjae and Tsubasa, were introduced to their new teammates and eventually made their first appearances in Daegu colours in a friendly match. 

On 29th June, Daegu hosted J.League 1 league leaders Sanfrecce Hiroshima. Previously, when Daegu came up against Sanfrecce in 2006, Daegu lost 2-1 and so the fans will have been hoping for some long over due revenge whilst the team put the final touches on their preparations ahead of the resumption of the K League in the process. The odds were stacked against Daegu because of the how strong of a team Sanfrecce are but, by all accounts, Daegu played very well and beat J1 table toppers 3-2.

Ze Roberto and Cesinha during Daegu's midseason training camp. (Image via Daegu FC)
Daegu played in a 4-2-3-1 formation with Ze Roberto, Edgar, Cho Suk-jae, and Cesinha in attack. Hwang Soonmin and Ryu Jaemoon were deployed to protect in midfield and the defence line was consisted of Jung Woojae, Park Byunghyun, Hong Jungwoon and Kim Woosuk. Between the sticks, new rookie, Choi Youngeun was positioned, deputising for Cho Hyunwoo who was still away on international duty. The three Brazilians’ performances were as good as last year’s trio-Evandro, Junior, and Cesinha and some fans even suggested that they are better than last year's front three.
-Muyeol Jung

Who To Watch

Cho Hyunwoo leads the team out against FC Seoul in 2017

Naturally, many people’s eyes will be on breakout star and goalkeeper Cho Hyunwoo as he rapidly rose to fame following his impressive performances during the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. Because of Cho, higher attendances at Blue Arc are expected with potential fans wanting to show their appreciation for the Taeguk Warrior. In such circumstances, with the possibility of attracting new fans to follow Daegu regularly, manager Andre will be hoping that Brazilian Ze Roberto will take this opportunity to keep them coming back week-in-week-out with an impressive display.

Ze Roberto is very quick and good at linking up play rather than just dribbling. He is the kind of a player who can open up a defence with swift movement and can bring others into play. Therefore, FC Seoul will have to be careful not to leave him unmarked, otherwise the visitors may end up find him celebrating a debut goal.
- Muyeol Jung


Both teams will be desperate for the win because of where they are in the table and how they performed prior to the World Cup break. For Seoul it is imperative that they get off to a good start if they are to climb up into the top half. Any signs of sluggishness and the likes of Pohang, Ulsan, and Gangwon, who are just ahead of them in the table, could start to pull away. Caretaker gaffer Lee Eulyong has had enough time to work with the team, including a summer training camp in Cheonan, and so ought to have found a system to suit the players he has at his disposal. Anything less than a win will be seen as a failure and may prompt the hierarchy at Sangam to begin looking for a new manager sooner rather than later.

Daegu, meanwhile, have a number of new signings who may need some time to settle in but may well be buoyed by how well Cho Hyunwoo played at the World Cup. Equally, Daegu will be desperate for a win, especially with Incheon heading to Jeonju to take on Champions Jeonbuk Hyundai. An Incheon defeat and a Daegu win would be enough to see Andre's side move off the bottom of the table. The right-hand side remains a weakness but could still be a threat from set pieces.

Daegu FC 0-2 FC Seoul

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