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Recap: FC Seoul 2-0 Sangju Sangmu

Recap: FC Seoul 2-0 Sangju Sangmu K League 1 Match Report
FC Seoul moved to the top of the K League 1 table thanks to a 2-0 home victory over Sangju Sangmu. An own goal from Kim Kyungjae just before half time, followed by a late Jung Wonjin strike gave Choi Yongsoo' side their third victory in four. Another clean sheet for the impressive Yoo Sanghoon also means that the capital club are the only team in the division yet to concede a goal this season.

A fortuitous own goal on the stoke of half time, followed by a half volley from substitute Jung Wonjin nine minutes from time gives Choi Yongsoo his third win of the season, leapfrogging Sangju Sangmu to go top of the league.

Choi made just one change from the team which drew 0-0 to Jeju United before the international break, Aleksandar Pešić was handed his first start replacing Park Dongjin up front. Sangju, meanwhile, stuck with the same starting lineup and formation which had earned the military side three wins from their first three games.

First Half

Sangju started the brightest of the two teams in the first ten to fifteen minutes; the army side’s short passing and smart off-the-ball movement allowed them into dangerous positions around the FC Seoul penalty area. Off the ball, Seoul’s shape was a distinct 5-3-2 with both wing-backs dropping deep to make a bank of five. Jung Hyeoncheol sat in front the defence with captain Go Yohan tasked with connecting the midfield to the attack. The hosts were more than content to sit back and soak up pressure.

The game’s first real chance fell to Shin Changmu for Sangju on 14 minutes who, onside managed to find himself bearing down on goal only to be thwarted by the on-rushing Yoo Sanghoon in between the sticks for the hosts - Yoo continung to show why he is Choi Yongsoo's number one goalkeeper

On 19 minutes, Sangju had another chance to take the lead, this time via a back-post header from former Suwon Bluewings wing-back Kim Minwoo. After a teasing cross from the right-hand side, Kim made decent contact with the ball but the cross was just a stretch too far and went just wide of the post.

FC Seoul had a meaningful chance of their own shortly after through Go Yohan. The one-club man was played in cleverly by Aleksander Pešić whose chip around the corner allowed Go in on goal. However, the acute angle proved too much and the so ball trickled agonisingly past the far post.

Seoul thought they had another glorious chance to take the initiative just a couple of minutes later, again through Go Yohan who, one on one with the goalkeeper, dinked the ball over but onto the top of the bar. Go’s bushes were spared with the linesman’s raised flag on the near side.

Recap: FC Seoul 2-0 Sangju Sangmu Go Yo-han K League 1

On 31 minutes Pešić had a golden opportunity to give the hosts the lead but the Serbian’s header from Yun Jonggyu’s cross failed to test the Yun Bosang in between the sticks for Sangju. However, despite Seoul's lack of guile, the hosts were beginning to exert more pressure on Sangju.

Alibaev showed some good touches but was quiet by his own lofty standards, but was on hand to give Pešić his first real sight of goal. A clever ball out to Pešić allowed the Serbian to usher the ball onto his left, before firing into the side netting from a slight angle. Seoul were starting to turn the screw a touch more but still lacked that little bit of cutting edge in the final third.

The deadlock was finally broken on the stroke of half time thanks to a rather fortuitous own goal. Seoul right wing-back Yun Jonggyu was dispossessed towards the byline by Yoon Bitgaram whose clearance across goal cannoned off of Sangju defensive midfielder Kim Kyunghae just a few yards out. An exasperated Yun Bosang could do little more than fish the ball out of the back of his net.

However, the first half wasn’t quite done there; Sangju had a chance to restore parity at the break but Pešić in the right place at the right time to clear the danger.

Second Half

Much like the first 45, Sangju came out bright in the opening exchanges of the second half. Song Siwoo in particular who, after a lapse in concentration by Lee Woonghee, nicked the ball off the Seoul centre back before attempting to chip the ball over Yoo Sanghoon. But, with too much weight behind the shot, the ball went over the bar and out to safety.

In the second period Pešić was very much the number nine with Park Chuyoung behind to make up a 3-5-1-1 formation. The Serbian, who was making his first start since joining on loan from Al-Ittihad, tried to get on the ball and drive towards goal in a bid to give Seoul some more potency in the final third.

However, the 26 year-old was beginning to cut somewhat of a frustrated figure upfront with the supply to the former Toulouse striker lacking in quality. Whether it be through the likes of Park Chuyoung or Go Yohan taking too much time on the ball, or others playing the wrong pass, it became clear that a first goal for Pešić would have to wait until another day.

Sangju, undeterred, went for an equaliser with Park Yongji, on as a substitute, looked to exploit the space in between the centre backs. Park scored a brace against Seoul in the 2-2 draw at Sangam last season and was determined to get on the scoresheet.

The longer the game went on the more it appeared as though Sangju were going to grab themselves an equaliser. Seoul were a touch jittery at the back, Kim Wongyun in particular who didn’t seem to recover from his first half caution.

For the latter part of the second period Sangju were camped in Seoul’s half. Seoul though were happy to get men behind the ball and try to pick the military team off on the counter in a a 5-4-1 formation.

Recap: FC Seoul 2-0 Sangju Sangmu K League 1

And so, on the counter is exactly how the hosts doubled their advantage; Go Yohan picked the ball up in midfield before laying it into the path of Pešić who, after driving forward, squared to Park Chuyoung. Park’s first time shot was parried away but Jung Wonjin was in space to fire home the rebound with little over five minutes of normal time remaining.

It was a deserved victory for FC Seoul who knew when to drop deep and soak up pressure at the right time. Whilst a fourth clean sheet for the season will be welcomed by Choi Yongsoo, Seoul's hesitance in the final third will be a concern. However, with Aleksandar Pešić back to full fitness, Coach Choi will no doubt feel as though it will just be a matter of time before things start to click in that department.


Substitutes: 21 Yang Hanbin, 14 Kim Hangil (Ko Kwangmin 90+2'), 15 Kim Wonsik, 16 Ha Daesung (Alibaev 66'), 8 Jung Wonjin (Ha Daesung 75'), 19 Yu Jutae, 50 Park Dongjin

Substitutes: 1 Kwon Taeahn, 8 Lee Sangyeop, 11 Kim Kyungjoong, 16 Song Sooyoung (Song Siwoo 89'), 19 Park Yongji (Shin Changmu 55'), 20 Baek Donggyu, 30 Lee Mingi

Attendance: 11,667
Referee: Kim Yongwoo
Referee's Assistants: Yoon Kwangyeol, Yang Jaeyong
Fourth Official: Choi Hyunjae

Full Time Analysis with Editors Ryan Walters and Paul Neat

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