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Preview: Jeju United vs Incheon United

K League 1 Preview: Jeju United vs Incheon United

The islanders will hope to take the pitch on Saturday evening against Incheon United in K League 1, following the postponement of their match in midweek against Suwon Bluewings because of Typhoon Soulik.  Incheon picked up a big 3-1 victory at home over Jeonnam Dragons, moving them out of the basement thanks to a sparkling performance from Moon Seon-min.  KLU's Branko Belan and Tim Barnes sat down to talk about the match.

Match: Jeju United vs Incheon United
Venue: Jeju World Cup Stadium
Kickoff: Saturday August 25th, 2018; 19:00 KST

Last Time Out

Jeju United vs Suwon Bluewings (Postponed)

Wednesday night's match between Jeju and Suwon was postponed due to Typhoon Soulik, as the storm wreaked havoc on the southern half of the island, making conditions at match time completely unplayable.  Heavy winds and sheeting rain has affected the entire island since Wednesday night into Thursday, and there is a second weather system, Typhoon Cimaron, which could also affect the island in the coming days, calling into question whether Saturday's match will be played or not.  

Suwon were the only team that Jeju had beaten since July, and their winless streak is now at nine games.  A decision is yet to be made as to when the match will be re-scheduled.

Incheon United 3-1 Jeonnam Dragons

Both teams came into the match knowing that it would be critical in the battle for relegation.  Incheon were dismantled on the weekend 7-0 against Gangwon, while Jeonnam put six past Suwon in a ten goal scorcher.

Incheon got out of the gate quickly and were ahead after only four minutes, when Moon Seon-min put the hosts in front, firing in a rebound after Gordan Bunoza had a strike at goal.  Seven minutes before the end of the half, Incheon went two in front when Stefan Mugosa found himself in space on the left and beat Jeonnam 'keeper Lee Ho-seung into the far corner, but a better effort from the man between the sticks was in order.  

The second half would see Jeonnam push forward a bit more, but their possession was not of the useful sort most of the time, as they could not muster chances in front of goal much of the time to get themselves back into the match, although Wanderson did pull one back with a close range header in the 63rd minute to make it 2-1.  Moon would seal the result for Incheon with his second goal of the match in the 78th minute, capitalizing on a grave mistake by Lee, who came charging off his line, only for Moon to head the ball over him into the net.  The result did not change the rest of the way, and Incheon were able to pull themselves off the bottom of the table with a much needed victory.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

The two sides have already met twice this season, with Jeju winning both times, the first, a 4-2 triumph on the island in April, then a 2-1 success away a month later.  Overall, Jeju has a slight edge in the overall series, having won ten to Incheon's six.  On ten occasions, the final result was a draw.

The head-to-head between the two has always been characterized by low scoring and tight defense, and Saturday night should prove to be no different.  Both teams will likely go in search of all three points, but each for their own reasons, as Jeju have not tasted victory in a month and a half, and Incheon would like to build some momentum to keep them out of the league cellar.

Team News

It will be interesting to see how Jeju will approach the match as they did not play on Wednesday night because of the storm, which also means that nothing has really changed following the draw against Sangju last weekend.  The clock is ticking for Cho Sung-hwan, however, as there is little time before the split to get results in order to get back into the top six.

For Incheon, Norwegian manager Jørn Andersen won’t make many changes to the winning side from Wednesday, maybe one or two at the back. No players are suspended, however Kim Jinya is still away on International duty at the Asian Games, according to Tim Barnes.

The Adversary

Incheon United bounced back on Wednesday evening winning a releagtion six-pointer against Jeonnam.  Incheon hadn’t won since beating Jeonnam about a month ago. Losing to National League Mokpo City was bad, but a 7-0 hammering last weekend against Gangwon meant most of the Ultra fans boycotted the game on Wednesday. They’ll be back however on Saturday for this game against Jeju.

Who to Watch

There is no time left to shuffle things around in the starting eleven, and the hope is that the Brazilian duo of Magno and Tiago will lead the line from the first minute on Saturday night.  When playing together, especially recently, they have shown the capability to create chances, with the latter starting to show some better form lately in comparison to earlier in the season.  He scored against Incheon in the first meeting between the teams, which was also his first goal for the club, and it was a beauty.  If both are up top at the first whistle, they have a good chance to do some damage together.

Based solely on Wednesdays game, World Cup call-up Moon Seon-Min played a blinder and his brace certainly turned the tide of the sinking Incheon ship, says Barnes.  He didn’t set the world alight over in Russia, but in the K League this season he is the top domestic goalscorer.  As he normally plays as a winger, that’s extra impressive.


Incheon and Jeju have been unpredictable and inconsistent since the World Cup break. So, this one could go either way.  Jeju will be better rested and at home should have the edge, in Barnes' opinion.

Jeju also have the head-to-head edge by a considerable margin this season, and, despite poor form lately, having done well against the bottom half of the league, of which they are now a part, should be able to finally sneak out a win and three points, which could make a difference down the stretch.

Prediction: Jeju United 2-1 Incheon United

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