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Preview: Seongnam FC vs Seoul E-Land

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

The bad fortunes continue for Seoul E-Land, as we quickly approach the end of the K League 2 season. Another defeat on the weekend to Gwangju, keep the leopards firmly in the last position in the league.

If E-Land are to break the conundrum they have recently been faced with, they will have to do it the hard way, w
ith an away trip down to Seongnam FC on Sunday afternoon. Seongnam are relentless in pushing for an automatic promotion spot, and they will likely welcome a game against a struggling E-Land.
(image via K League)

Last Time Out

Seoul E-Land played the second of back to back home games on Sunday, when they were tasked with taking on a Gwangju side still in hope of a playoff spot.

The game started out quite positively for Seoul as they had most of the chances and were dominant in Gwangju‘s half. In the 18th minute, however, a breakaway attack from Gwangju saw Seoul's Kim Young-kwang make a nice save, only for Robson Carlos to tap in the rebound.

The first half ended 1-0 for the away side. The second half saw them also go from strength to strength with a flurry of chances for Gwangju. In the 63rd minute, they made it 2-0, thanks to the efforts of Kim Dong-Hyun.

E-Land were on the ropes and Gwangju sensed this. Asian Games star Na Sang-ho found space only three minutes later and made it 3-0 for Gwangju. There was no going back for Seoul at this point.

E-Land did manage to pull one back, however, with a sweet Ahn Ji-ho volley from outside of the box after a corner in the 88th minute. It was a real strikers finish from the defender.

But Gwangju showed their class once more and scored a fourth in injury time, with credit given to Na Sang-ho once again, scoring a brace in the game.

Final Score: Seoul E-Land 1-4 Gwangju Fc

Seongnam continued their winning ways last weekend, when they made the journey up north to face against struggling side Bucheon 1995.

The game was a stalemate in the first half, with not many chances coming from both sides.

The second half saw a well-worked piece of play and a Seongnam cross was placed dangerously into the box. The ball was momentarily cleared, only for Éder to put the ball into the back of the net from the retry.

Seongnam held onto their lead with the solo goal to put them back to within two points off the top.

Final score: Bucheon 1995 0-1 Seongnam.

Previous Meetings

The last time the two sides met was only a month prior, back at the start of September. A wet and rainy Jamsil saw a Seongnam side, desperate to end the hoodoo of never beating E-Land in any previous encounter.

The game did have a controversial moment however, in the first half of the game. In the 29th minute, Seongnam were called offside by the linesman, only for Kim Do-youp to pass the ball back to E-Land's keeper Kim Young-kwang. The ball actually went over Glory's head and into the back of the net.

When Kim Young-kwang went to get the ball to take the freekick, the referee decided to blow his whistle and take a look at the offside on VAR, remarkably he came to the conclusion that the play was not off-side, and actually gave a goal from Kim Do-youp's pass back.

A real gift of a goal for Seongnam that more times than not, would never have been counted. However, it stood and the Magpies found themselves 1-0 up in the 30th minute.

Seoul never really managed to shake the goal out of their system and it was only ten minutes later, from a counter attack due to a cleared E-Land corner, saw Seongnam once again charge into the box. Jung Sung-min slotted the ball home, and Seoul was faced once again with another mountain to climb.

The second half brought more attacks from Seongnam, and more chances for them to better their two-goal cushion, however, it didn't come and Jeon Min-kwang actually pulled one back for The Leopards in the 74th minute, witwell-workedrked header from a corner saw the score at 2-1 going into the final 15 minutes.

Seoul continued to push, with even a one on one chances for Bielkiewicz to put away but it didn't come. Seongnam finally registered their first victory over E-Land in their history

Final Score: Seoul E-Land 1-2 Seongnam

Team News

Both teams will go into the game with no suspensions when the two sides meet on Sunday afternoon. Something of a rarity for E-Land due to their poor discipline record this year.

Defensively, last week's only positive from their poor showing against Gwangju, was the performance of Jeon Min-kwang, who showed real quality, regardless of the scoreline. The Korean has been a firm starting favorite this season and we will more than likely see his presence on the weekend.

The last game also saw Choi Oh-back make his 29th appearance for the side the season. The only time he was not included in the squad was when he was suspended earlier in the year for accumulating a number of yellow cards.

We have not seen Herrera play for Seoul E-Land since mid-August, although he was on the bench for the game on the weekend. Maybe its time for the Chilean to get the nod, as he has still not yet started for the Leopards this season.

Prediction

Seoul E-Land has well and truly fallen off a cliff in recent months, I really believe they have never got over their 5-0 drumming by Busan IPark back in August. Seoul had a point to prove this season, and with only a handful of games left in the year, they are running out of time to prove their worth.

Seoul E-Land find themselves on 30 points after 30 games this year, about the same as last year, when they came out with 31 points with also six games to go.

If they want to salvage anything and better their 2017 record, they will have to do it against a Seongnam side who have not lost in six outings. Seongnam are also breathing down Asan Mugunghwa's neck with only two points separating the two sides.

It will be intriguing to see if E-Land can even score against Seongnam on the weekend, let alone win.

Predicted Score: Seongnam 2-1 Seoul E-Land

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