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Preview: Gyeongnam FC v Incheon United

K League 1 Preview: Gyeongnam FC vs Incheon United
Gyeongnam FC pit their wits against strugglers Incheon United on Saturday evening at the Changwon Football Center.  Incheon have a new manager at the helm in Norwegian Jørn Andersen, who has been brought in to arrest their terrible run of form and get the northerners back to winning ways and off the foot of the table.  This weekend's clash will be a stern test for them as Gyeongnam FC are riding a crest of a wave at the moment and sit fourth in the standings.
(Image via K League)

Match: Gyeongnam FC v Incheon United
Venue: Changwon Football Center
Kick off: Saturday, July 14th, 19:00 (KST)

Last time Out

The Reds played out a goalless draw against Jeju United on the island in a disjointed performance from both sides.  Gyeongnam in particular rotated their squad and only began the game with six players that had started the previous week against Pohang Steelers.  Jeju also rotated their starting eleven and the game became a very stop start affair from the first whistle.  In the second half Gyeongnam brought on their big guns in Negueba, Paulinho and Marcao to try and grab all three points.  Marcao was nearly the match winner but his deft header was denied by a full length save from Lee Chang-geun.

Incheon United on the other hand played out a thriller at home against Gangwon in a 3-3 draw, their second result of that scoreline in successive games.  Incheon score goals for fun but also cannot stop conceding them either.  United were two goals to the good courtesy of Aguliar on nine minutes and the well travelled Go Seul-ki doubled their advantage after 22 minutes. Gangwon came out of the traps after the interval in devastating fashion and had Incheon pegged in their own half from the off.  Mauricio reduced the defecit around the hour mark and they drew level just ten minutes later through the unfortunate Lee Jeong-bin who, from a well worked Gangwon corner, deflected the cross into his own net.  Incheon United got themselves back in front through Go Seul-ki again for his second of the game after the ball had rebounded off the bar.  He was fastest to react and smashed the ball home.  More drama was to come with leading goalscorer in the league, Đerić, grabbing a point for the away side with a trademark header into the bottom corner from around the penalty spot.

Previous Meetings

The two sides faced each other earlier this season at the Sungui Arena Park.  Gyeongnam won a thriller 3-2 with central defender Park Ji-soo proving the match winner with a last minute goal from an uncleared corner.  It was a feisty affair with The Reds winger Negueba sent for an early bath on 49 minutes for a studs up challenge.  This made the win even more remarkable as Gyeongnam had to play 40 minutes with just ten men.  Korean National team striker Moon Seon-min was on fine form for Incheon during that match, bagging a brace.   In total Gyeongnam and Incheon have played each other 25 times with the Reds winning ten of them. Incheon have only won on four occasions and 11 games have ended as a draw.

Team News

The home side can welcome back ex-Incheon player Park Ji-soo who missed Gyeongnam's clash against Jeju United in the last game after picking up his third yellow card against Pohang the previous week,  He is a mainstay in the back line for the Reds.  Kim Jong-boo rotated a lot of his squad midweek against Jeju into a slightly more defensive formation.  Against Incheon, a team that has conceded 32 goals in the league in just 16 games, the home side's gaffer will put out all his big guns for this one.  I wouldn't be surprised if the Brazilian trio in Marcao, Negueba and Paulinho all start the match.

The Adversary

Incheon United have played out two wild games since returning from the World Cup break. Drawing 3-3 with current league leaders Jeonbuk Hyundai and again 3-3 with ACL chasing Gangwon FC. Incheon are now bottom of the league a point behind Daegu. Incheon’s main weakness has been an awful defence with the worst defensive record in the league, which cost them wins in the last two games.

Recently appointed Norwegian Jørn Andersen. Has improved the midfield, but so far he hasn’t made much headway at the back. So heading into the game against Gyeongnam FC I see a few changes to the starting XI, with the keeper switching out plus maybe a couple of the back four. The midfield should stay the same with Stefan Mugosa continuing upfront.

Based on the two games since the World Cup break Costa Rican Midfielder has been Elias Aguilar has been a danger moving forward and should be the one to watch. Scoring and creating goals against Gangwon, and also picking up an assist in the game against Jeonbuk Hyundai.

By Tim Barnes.

One to watch

Negueba had his best game in a Gyeongnam shirt against Pohang last weekend, proving to be a menace on either flank and kept both Pohang full backs busy all game. He is really starting to show his undoubted potential after a somewhat stop-start beginning to his Gyeongnam career. He has started to perform at a higher level now and has become more of a team player rather than being too selfish on the ball. I expect him to flourish this weekend against a leaky Incheon United backline.


Tim's Prediction: Incheon can score goals for fun, especially in the first half at the moment. However Gyeongnam are strong moving forward and, in the end, will outscore Incheon to take the victory 2-1.

James' Prediction: Gyeongnam can score goals but they can look quite open at the back at times. Quick forwards can hurt the Reds and in Incheon striker Moon Seon-min, they have a player who fits that profile. Saying this I still think the home side will have too much for Incheon. I am going with a 3-1 win for Gyeongnam FC.

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