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Preview: Pohang Steelers Vs FC Seoul

Preview: Pohang Steelers Vs FC Seoul K League 1
FC Seoul's second away game in the space of four days sees Lee Eulyong's men travel to the East Coast to take on Pohang Steelers. Both sides are enduring a less than flattering run of form and, if their respective results at the weekend are anything to go by, appear as though there is still work to be done. Pohang are directly above Seoul in the table and have a three point cushion; a win for Seoul would draw them level on points and could even place them above the Steelers if they were to win by three goals. Pohang, meanwhile, are just three points off the top six and could move up to 6th should results elsewhere go their way.
(image via K League)

Overview

From Soccerway


Last Time Out

Pohang Steelers began the second half of the campaign with an away defeat to Gyeongnam FC in Gimhae on Saturday. Even without star striker Marcão, Gyeongnam proved to be too stern of a test for Pohang whose poor run of form was extended to just one win in eight. Cho Jaecheol had Gyeongnam 1-0 up inside three minutes, Cho Youngcheol with the assist. Negueba doubled the home side's advantage on 67 minutes to see Pohang remain in eighth and Gyeongnam up to third.

Highlights: here

FC Seoul, meanwhile, allowed a 2-0 lead to slip between their fingers and had to settle for a draw with bottom-placed Daegu FC on Sunday. Seoul got off to a bright start thanks to a Cho Youngwook goal with the 20 year-old coolly slotting home after meeting Go Yohan's cross from the right-hand side on 11 minutes. Seoul were 2-0 up just seven minutes later through Anderson, Seoul's number 9 finishing from close range, Yun Sukyoung with the assist. However, Daegu got themselves back in the game thanks to a debut goal from Edgar on 37 minutes, tucking the ball away from six yards out. The home side's comeback was then complete in time added on in the first half when Yun Sukyoung brought to Cesinha in the box. After consluting VAR the referee pointed to the spot, Cesinha stepped up and fired past Yang Hanbin in between the sticks for Seoul to ensure that the spoils were shared.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

FC Seoul are unbeaten in their last three meetings with Pohang Steelers with two wins and a draw. The most recent win was back in April when the two sides met at Sangam. It was the visitors who took the lead, though - Kim Seungdae inside nine minutes to give the Steelers the advantage. A Go Yohan brace turned the game on its head to ensure Seoul of the points with a goal eitherside of half time. Pohang thought they had levelled late on but Getterson's goal was chalked off for offside after the referee had checked with VAR.

The last meeting at the Steel Yard was the last time Pohang were able to displace Seoul, a 3-2 win in May 2017. Dejan put Seoul ahead with a brace netting on 11 and 54 minutes before Lulinha pulled one back two minutes later. Sim Dongwoon levelled with just six minutes of normal time remaining before Lulinha added his second and Pohang's third deep into injury time to seal a dramatic victory.

Overall, Seoul have 23 wins to Pohang's 17 from the 52 meetings but only seven of those have come away from home. Seoul's last win at the Steel Yard was four years ago when an Éverton Santos goal in the 84th minute proved to be enough for what was then Choi Yongsoo's side.

Team News

Pohang Steelers may be without Australian defender Connor Chapman who suffered an ankle injury in Pohang's 1-1 draw with Suwon Bluewings prior to the World Cup break. The former Incheon United man was absent from the squad that lost to Gyeongnam at the weekend but hinted via his Instagram account that he could be set for a return. Lee Sangki was also absent, the midfielder is recovering from a facial injury and could be a doubt for the visit of Seoul on Wednesday. Brazilian forward Getterson left the club last week but Lee Jinhyun, who returned to the club following a loan deal with Austria Wien, is likely to keep his place in the team.

For FC Seoul, defensive midfielder Hwang Kiwook is available again after serving a one-match ban. The 21 year-old enjoyed a run in the team in the lead up to the World Cup break and may be called upon again on Wednesday. Injury wise, Shin Jinho was conspicuous by his absence on Sunday and may be carrying a knock. Ha Daesung remains sidelined but Song Jinhyung has featured in the reserves and was present during Seoul's summer training camp in Cheonan and could be nearing a return.

The Adversary

After a positive start to the 2018 season Pohang find themselves in a similar situation to FC Seoul, in an area in the table where they simply do not want to be. Languishing in the lower reaches of mid-table was not what Pohang manager Choi Soonho had in mind, especially after three wins from their first four games of the campaign had looked as though a tilt at ACL qualification was on the cards. Since 31st March, though, Pohang have won just twice - a run of 11 games.

Pohang have largely lined up in a 4-3-3 formation with Kim Seungdae popping up from midfield and getting into advanced positions. The 27-year-old midfielder has got four goals this season and is the club's second highest goalscorer, Leo Garmalho is first with five from just nine starts, 15 appearances overall. The most recent for Gamalho came in the 1-1 draw at Big Bird against Suwon Bluewings. Garmalho was on the bench for the 2-0 defeat to Gyeongnam and has found starts hard to come by.

Pohang Lineup vs Gyeongnam in Round 15


Who To Watch

Kang Hyunmoo

Goalkeeper Kang Hyunmoo has been ever present for Pohang this season. (Image via K Leagie)
After the World Cup the footballing world has been waxing lyrical about Daegu FC goalkeeper Cho Hyunwoo, and rightly so. But, come Wednesday night there will be two more talented, young goalkeepers lining up for their respective teams: Yang Hanbin for FC Seoul and Kang Hyunmoo for Pohang. Along with attacking midfielder Kim Seungdae, goalkeeper Kang Hyunmoo is vitally important for Pohang Steelers. The 23 year-old has kept four cleansheets this term and is proving to be a real prospect for the future. The Korea U23 international has kept Pohang in games with some impressive saves and could be key if Pohang are to get a result against FC Seoul on Wednesday.

Prediction

FC Seoul will be irked by their collapse on Sunday, throwing away a 2-0 lead to end up having to settle for a point against Daegu, Likewise, Pohang will be hell bent on getting a result on Wednesday after a disappointing display down in Gyeongnam and will want to make amends. Seoul's record at the Steel Yard is less than impressive and may feel like a draw would be a positive result. Pohang may bring in the likes of Leo Gamalho and Song Seungmin to add an extra dimension in their attack. Gamalho would certainly add a physical presence, the 32-year-old striker was a nuisance for the FC Seoul defence in the return fixture in April. Neither team will want to lose this and so a stalemate might not be too farfetched.

Pohang Steelers 1-1 FC Seoul



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