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Preview: Asan Mugunghwa vs Seoul E-Land

K League 2 Preview: Gwangju FC vs Seoul E-Land

For many fans, last Sunday was set to continue a predicted long run of defeats for Seoul E-Land FC. Yet, after embarrassing losses by both Busan IPark and Daejeon Citizen, E-Land managed to claim a point, in a 2-2 draw against Gwangju in the K League 2.

After an improvement in form from the previous two games, one of their biggest tests will now come in the form of an away trip to Asan Mugunghwa on Saturday evening. Can E-Land frustrate another team at the top of the table or will it be business as usual for the police side?

(image via K League)

Last Time Out

The match on Sunday evening saw Seoul E-Land having a lot to prove, as they tried to claim back some pride form their last two games. The trip down to Gwangju would be no easy task, but it was Seoul E-Land who drew first blood in the encounter.

A wonderful bit of play from the back pressed the ball forward to Cho Chan-ho, who took a shot from outside of the box in the 30th minute. The ball was slotted into the right side of the net, and E-Land found themselves 1-0 to the good, away from home.

The game went into halftime still one goal to the good for the away team. In the second half, Brazilian Felipe exploited Seoul’s defensive issues and leveled the score in the 55th minute with a well-worked header from a cross. Seoul’s defense couldn’t pick up the Brazilian, and it cost the side.

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Ahn Sung-bin has been Seoul E-Land's favored right back, since his signing over the summer from Gyeongnam FC. He was once again featured on Sunday against Gwangju in the K League 2 (Photo Credit: www.facebook.com/seouleland )
The drama continued in the game, as only 12 minutes later in the tie, Cho Chan-ho crossed the ball in for Choi Oh-back to place the ball into the back of the net. 2-1 to Seoul E-Land, with one goal and one assist from Cho Chan-ho for his hard efforts.

Gwangju pressed from the restart and was awarded a penalty in the 81st minute, Róbson Carlos was pulled down by Kim Tae-eun, who was on defensive duties for the game. Felipe converted from the spot kick and the two teams played out a 2-2 draw. It was an enjoyable game for the neutral supporter and it added to the high tally of goals on Sunday evening from the top two Korean Leagues.

Final Score: Gwagju 2-2 Seoul E-Land

Highlights of Choi Oh-back’s goal can be found here

Elsewhere in the league, it was a usual three points for Asan Mugunghwa on Saturday evening. The police team made the return up to their old dwellings, as they met Ansan Greeners, a side who have lost eight straight games now in the league.

Asan wasted only 20 minutes before putting the ball into Ansan’s net. Ahn Hyun-beom played a lovely few step-overs, beating two of Ansan’s defense in the process. A rocket shot was all that was needed from him to beat Hwang Sung-min between the sticks for Ansan.

The game ended with just the solo goal from the Korean. Strangely, this may be a sign of a bad performance for Asan. Ansan just cannot pick up any points at the moment in the league, so for Asan to score just the one goal, is not a great indication of a good showing from the side.

Final Score: Ansan Greeners 0-1 Asan Mugunhwa

Highlights of Ahn Hyun-beom’s goal can be found here.


Previous Meetings

The last time the two sides met in the K League 2, was actually the last game before the FIFA World Cup break for the second division, all the way back in June.

We once again saw Seoul E-Land make the journey down south, to take on the Police side on home soil.

The game was one to forget for E-Land, as it only took Asan seven minutes to make it 1-0 in the clash. Lee Jae-an scored for the home side, and E-Land found themselves with a mountain to climb if they wanted anything out of the game.

Some may say the game was put to bed in the lead up to halftime, as Han Eui-gwon made it two in the 40th minute.

The nail in the coffin came in the 70th minute, with Lee Jae-an scoring his brace, and putting the game to bed at 3-0. It was a convincing performance for Asan in the game, and they had Seoul E-Land on the back foot for the entirety of the tie.

Seoul E-Land will hope to not repeat the same fate as they had back in June when the two sides last met, but with the defense in their current state, this might be too much to ask for

Final Score: Asan Mugunghwa 3-0 Seoul E-Land.

Team News

Seoul E-Land reverted back to their common defensive partnership on the weekend with Ahn Ji-ho and Kim Jae-hyeon in the back line. The favored Ahn Sung-bin, since his signing in the summer, was also at the right back position.


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The Seoul E-Land side who faced Gwangju last weekend, which saw a returning partnership of Ahn Ji-ho and Kim Jae-Hyeon at the back. (Photo Credit: www.facebook.com/seouleland )
E-Land looked a lot more stable this week, but they still conceded two goals in the game. That is now nine in the last three, something they truly need to address. The game against Asan may see the return of Jeon Ming-kwang in the left back position, who has not played since his sending off against Busan.

A player who had a great game for Seoul on Sunday was Cho Chan-ho, with a goal and an assist for the side. He will defiantly be hoping to get the nod once again, as he was instrumental in the draw against Gwangju.

Seoul E-Land have a real habit of trying to push the ball forward at all times in the game, sometimes it works well, but other times they need to stop and think about the passes. Especially against a top side like Asan, they will need to work from the back slowly and look for the right runs.

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The K League 2 Round 24 Best XI saw Seoul E-Land's Cho Chan-ho make the side it into the side with his steller efforts against Gwangju FC on Sunday. (Photo Credit: www.facebook.com/withKLEAGUE )

If E-Land are to get anything from the tie, it will be from a well-structured defense, as we already know that Asan will be heavy in their attack, working with their well equipped midfield. If E-Land can shut off the midfield and pressing chances from Asan, than they may get something out of the game.

The Adversary

Asan Mugungwha are playing cat and mouse with Seongnam at the moment, for who will top the K League 2. Both teams have had good runs in first place, and Asan will go into the game against E-Land in that position.

With a record of 12 wins, eight draws, and four losses, Asan have proven, that teams can take points off them if they keep to their tactics and structure in the 90. Prior to the last result, Asan went on a three-game drawing streak. If it wasn’t for Seongnam also slipping up, they could have seen themselves drop to second position.

Asan will be desperate to get all three points against E-Land on Saturday, with Seongnam and now Busan IPark breathing down their necks. Busan have hit fantastic form as of late, and have turned a two-horse race, easily into a three horse one.

Koo Dae-young celebrates Asan Mugunghwa's 1-0 victory over Ansan Greeners in the K League 2. The victory keeps the side in 1st position in the league.

The team can score though, and we see that as they have the highest goal difference of +17 in the league. Their top goal scorer Han Eui-gwon was prolific for the side, but has since completed his military service, and returned back to parent club Suwon Samsung Bluewings.

Prediction

It will be interesting to see if Asan can keep their cool at the top of the table. They have shown that they can beat teams convincingly, but recent form has not suggested that.

Seoul E-Land on the other hand, continue their long road to redemption in the league. They will hope to be more motivated this time around and finally take some points off Asan away from home.

In reality, this is a top team, playing a team hovering at the bottom of the table, If Seoul can sort out their defensive issues, then maybe we could be in for a very back and forth game. If not, it'll be another easy win for the police side.

Predicted Score: Asan Mugunghwa 2-1 Seoul E-Land

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