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Preview: Daegu FC vs FC Seoul

Preview: Daegu FC vs FC Seoul K League 1
With only four games remaining, seventh-placed Daegu FC will host 10th-placed FC Seoul at Daegu Stadium in the hope of securing a place in K League 1 for another year. Seoul, meanwhile, have been on a terrible run of form and are now 11 matches without a win. Could the Sky Blues clinch the deal here or will the visitor bounce back with a win? Our Daegu FC Correspondent Muyeol Jung and FC Seoul Correspondent Paul Neat preview this clash.
(image via K League)

Last Time Out

FA Cup Semi-Final: Jeonnam Dragons 1-2 Daegu FC
Following a nerve-wracking 1-0 win over Incheon, Daegu made another long journey, this time to Gwangyang for the FA Cup semi-final on Wednesday. From the first 10 minutes, Daegu faced a big backlash from the host, however, luckily, Brazilian centre forward Edgar put Daegu 1-0 up after intercepting the ball from Jeonnam goalkeeper Park Daehan.

Another goal came just two minutes later. Youngster Kim Dae-won beautifully curled the ball into the left bottom corner with his right foot. In second half, Jeonnam tried to make a difference in the game using substitutions. On 60 minutes, substitute Lee Sang-heon pulled one back with a lovely volley inside the box. Afterwards, Jeonnam continued to push for a goal, but their efforts were denied by Jo Hyunwoo. In the end, Daegu held on to advance to the FA Cup Final for the first time in the club’s history.

Highlights: here

FC Seoul 1-1 Gangwon FC
This was the first round of the split for Seoul and Gangwon as well as the second game under re-appointed manager Choi Yong-soo at the helm. For Seoul, they desperately needed a breakthrough to change the mood in dressing room and it could nearly have been a win for them when Park Chu opened the scoring late into the second half. However, their joy didn’t last long as within just two minutes, Gangwon levelled through Jung Seung-yong. Afterwards, neither could add their second of the afternoon and the game ended in as a 1-1 draw.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

The latest meeting between the two was on 16th September in Seoul World Cup Stadium where the visitors beat the hosts 2-0 thanks to some fantastic individual performances from Daegu's forwards. Before that, the two teams had to settle for one point each just after the World Cup break, following a 3-0 win to Seoul in the first clash of this season in the spring.

Meanwhile, since 2017, when the Sky Blues were promoted to the first division, Daegu and Seoul have clashed on six times with two Daegu wins, one FC Seoul victory, and three draws.

Team News

Unlike how Daegu looked just before the World Cup, the mood amongst the players could not be better at present, even though the Sky Blues failed to make it into the top six. Daegu are into the FA Cup Final for the first time in their history and sit seventh in the table, 10 points clear of the relegation spot. If Andre's win here, the Sky Blues will be mathematically safe and will seal a place in K League 1 for 2019.

Approaching this game, Daegu manager Andre will likely put out the strongest players in the hope of sealing a place in K League 1 for next year earlier, even if they are slightly fatigued due to two long away trips in a week. Daegu have no suspended players, but Captain Han Hee-hoon remains the only doubt. Andre’s selection is expected to be very similar to that of the previous game.

The Adversary

Park Chu-young celebrates scoring for Seoul against Gangwon in R34 (image via K League)
Cometh the hour cometh the "Chu-man" as the FC Seoul fans refer to him as. Or so they thought when fan favourite Park Chu-young came off the bench to fire Seoul into an 84th minute lead at home to Gangwon last Saturday after a prolonged absence from the first team. Alas, straight from the re-start, Gangwon were level through Jung Seung-yong and, despite Seoul's best efforts to find a winner, the spoils were shared and Seoul's win-less run was further extended to 11 matches.

Luckily for Choi Yongsoo and his team, the bottom two also lost over the weekend meaning that the point gained against Gangwon widened the gap ever so slightly to six and four points above Incheon and Jeonnam respectively. A massive opportunity spurned but something to build on at least.

For the trip to Daegu, FC Seoul will have club captain Go Yo-han available for selection again having served a two-match ban following his straight red card during the 1-0 loss to Jeonnam Dragons. Anderson Lopes has been conspicuous by his absence from the matchday squad in recent weeks but, reading between the lines, it appears as that it hasn't been for footballing reasons and so the Brazilian could be due a return. Park Chu-young is extremely likely to play, possibly from the start. The goal against Gangwon will have done wonders for his confidence and so, if selected, will feel as though he can be the match-winner Seoul so desperately need.

A defeat for Seoul at this moment in time is unthinkable. With teams below them putting up a fight, it is imperative that Choi Yong-soo's men get a result down in Daegu. However, against a team playing with freedom created by confidence, such a feat is easier said than done.

by Paul Neat

Who To Watch

Towering Brazilian centre forward Edgar Silva, who joined Daegu on free agent through the summer transfer window from Buriram United of the Thai Premier League, is spearheading Daegu’s attack with eight goals from 15 appearances in the league.

Coincidentally, his debut in the K League was against FC Seoul in summer announced his arrival with a debut goal. Afterwards, his brilliant performances set the bar high but, unfortunately, it took him a bit of time to adapt himself to Andre’s tactic and the K League after picking up a knee injury.

Edgar started to make squad from the mid-August after missing four weeks and is perhaps one of Andre's irreplaceable players in first team alongside fellow Brazilian, Cesinha. Currently, Edgar is named tenth in the goal scoring charts with eight goals from just 15 games. Intriguingly, five of the eight were powerful headers and so he will be seen as a significant threat to FC Seoul.


Daegu will go for a win, however, due to fatigue from such long trips to both Incheon and Gwangyang, and limited rotation, Daegu’s efforts may not be enough to claim a victory. It will be a very close score draw.

Daegu FC 1-1 FC Seoul

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