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Preview: Daegu FC vs Incheon United

Preview: Daegu FC vs Incheon United K League 1
With only two more games left till the split, Daegu FC will host an Incheon United side without a win in their last four at Daegu Stadium this Saturday. Whilst Daegu are looking to getting into top six for the first time, Incheon are fighting for survival in K League 1. Will Daegu keep their hopes alive? Or can the bottom side escape from the relegation spot with a win? Daegu Correspondent Muyeol Jung and Incheon Correspondent Tim Barnes preview this.
(image via K League)


Last Time Out

Mokpo City FC 1-2 Daegu FC

Daegu made the long trip to the southwest coast in midweek for the FA Cup Quarter-Finals against Mokpo City FC. From the beginning, Daegu faced fierce attacking from the hosts and couldn't find a way to get out of from spells of sustained pressure. But it was the visitors who went on to open the scoring: halfway into the first half, backup forward Jeon Hyun-chul gave Daegu a 1-0 lead with a shot along the ground from inside the box. Afterwards, despite constant effort to find an equaliser from the National League side, it remained at 1-0 to Daegu at half time.


The second half started in similar fashion to the first but this time the hosts managed to level the game up thanks to substitute Kim Sang-wook who found the back of the net after World Cup hero Jo Hyeon-woo made a couple of quick successive saves. At 1-1, Daegu started to move forwards, and rookie Kim Dae-won added the second for Daegu with a lovely curled strike. For the remainder of the half, the hosts kept on fighting for an equaliser, but failed to pass through Jo Hyeon-woo. By winning this tie, Daegu have reached the semi-finals of FA Cup for the first time since 2008.

Highlights: here

Incheon United 2-2 Gyeongnam FC

The League's bottom side, Incheon United, hosted ACL contenders Gyeongnam at Sungui Arena Park last Sunday where the Durumi dramatically fought back to earn a draw. It was Gyeongnam who took steps forwards with goals from Kim Hyo-gi and Paulinho. While the hosts had huffed and puffed until Marcão and Kim Hyo-ki came off the pitch due to injuries, ten minutes from time, Incheon began to pull off a minor miracle. Costa Rican midfielder, Aguilar, pulled one back with a brilliant free-kick before Montenegrin striker Mugoša dramatically levelled the game to ensure that both teams had to settle for one point at full time.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

Daegu FC K League 1
Ze Roberto celebrates scoring the winner in a 2-1 Daegu victory in August (image via K League)
The latest clash between Daegu and Incheon was 11th August in Daegu when Andre's men beat the Durumi 2-1 thanks to Ze Roberto’s dramatic winning goal on the counter-attack.

Since Daegu’s return to K League 1 in 2017, these two sides have faced off six times with Daegu winning just once with previous five games ending as stalemates, three of which were goalless.

Team News

Daegu’s good run of form in the league halted by a 2-1 defeat over Pohang last weekend. However, in midweek, the Sky Blues successfully managed to bounce back with a 2-1 win over Mokpo City in the FA Cup. Also, as was perhaps expected, Andre rotated some of his squad following signs of fatigue amongst his first team players Approaching this game, Daegu will go full steam ahead. A win would mean that Daegu are still able to fight for the top six. However, anything less and they will still not yet be safe from ending the season in the relegation round of the split. Therefore, it is widely anticipated that Coach Andre will put out his strongest side.

Daegu have a relatively full bill of health, nor are there any players ruled out through suspension. The only notable absentee will be Japanese midfielder, Tsubasa, who is still out of squad but most of the first team regulars are expected to play. Furthermore, backup players such as Jeon Hyun-chul, Jung Sun-ho and Park Han-bin all earned some decent minutes in midweek, not only to hone their skills, but also to offer more from the bench should Andre need to make adjustments.

The Adversary

Stefan Mugoša celebrates scoring a late equaliser against Gyeongnam (image via K League)
Incheon United clawed their way back last Sunday afternoon coming back from two goals down to draw 2-2 against high flying Gyeongnam FC. However, Incheon haven’t won since beating Ulsan Hyundai over a month ago. This means they’re two points adrift at the bottom of the K League 1 table, and six points away from safety. Daegu also aren’t safe yet, but are at least nine points clear of Incheon.

Norwegian manager Jørn Andersen won’t make many changes to the side from Wednesday, but Moon Seon-min will surely start this time. No players are suspended, and no key players are currently sidelined with injuries.

by Tim Barnes

One To Watch 

Moon Seon-min in action for Incheon against Ulsan Hyundai (image via K League)
Based solely on late Sundays game, Korean international winger Moon Seon-min came on at half time and injected a bit life and energy into the midfield, he also created the second goal. He is once again in the South Korea squad for the October friendlies, which highlights his K League form.

by Tim Barnes

Prediction

Daegu certainly have problems with defence and so it would be unlikely for Incheon to fail to score, even though Jo Hyeon-woo is positioned between the sticks. Daegu have good quality players in attack who are surely able to make two goals. I expect a narrow win for Daegu.

Daegu FC 2-1 Incheon United


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