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Preview: Suwon Bluewings vs Daegu FC

The Suwon Bluewings welcome Daegu FC to the Suwon World Cup Stadium on Sunday afternoon for Round 7 of the 2019 K League 1. Suwon has never been a happy hunting ground for the citizen club but after a midweek loss they will be keen to get back to winning ways and continue their fine start to the year. The Bluewings won't be in a hospitable mood though and after only conceding one goal in their last three matches will hope to keep Daegu out and continue their mini-unbeaten run. 

Last Time Out

The Suwon Bluewings extended their unbeaten run to three games last weekend when they overcame a stubborn Gangwon FC side by two goals to nil. In a very even first half both teams were limited to shots from distance, all of which didn't really trouble either goalkeeper.

But after the introduction of Dejan Damjanović in the second half, and a shift in shape to 3-4-3, Suwon began to exert their dominance on the game and they took the lead courtesy of Dejan's first goal of the season. A throw in from the right-hand side fell to the feet of Adam Taggart, and after some fine hold-up play the Australian played a delightful through ball to find Damjanović in space behind the Gangwon backline. The striker made no mistake, firing his shot high into the corner of the net.

Suwon began to push further in the half and scored a deserved second goal in stoppage time. Substitute Han Seok-hui led a breakaway, and his pace and trickery earned Suwon a free-kick just on the edge of the Gangwon penalty area. Yeom Ki-hun stepped up to curl the ball around the wall and score his 70th goal in the K League, making him only the second player ever to score 70 goals and assist over 70 goals in the K League.

Highlights can be found here. 

Daegu suffered their first ever defeat in continental competition on Wednesday night when they lost 2-0 away to Sanfrecce Hiroshima. Daegu were up against it from the off when Park Han-bin fouled Yuki Nogami to give the home team a penalty in the 9th minute. Cho Hyun-woo got a hand to the resulting penalty but Douglas Viera's strike was too hot for the goalkeeper to handle.

Daegu then found themselves with a mountain to climb when some superb skill on the left-wing by Sho Sasaki set up Daiki Watari, who curled a magnificent shot into the far corner. Daegu rarely troubled Hiroshima in the second half and despite a red card being shown to Yusuke Minigawa in the closing stages Hiroshima saw the game out with ease.

Highlights can be found here. 

Previous Meetings

This is a fixture that Suwon have dominated throughout the years and Daegu are yet to ever register a victory away from home against the Bluewings. Of the 32 fixtures between these teams Daegu have only ever beaten Suwon three times with Suwon gaining 22 victories. Suwon also have ten wins in the last fourteen games between these two. Historically, Daegu have always struggled at the Suwon World Cup stadium and have only scored eight goals in their fourteen trips there.

However, Daegu did register their first win in thirteen attempts last season with a brilliant 4-2 home victory over Suwon. Goals from Cesinha, Edgar Silva and a Kim Eun-seon own goal did for Suwon that day and stemmed the tide of Suwon victories in this fixture.

Team News

After a rare full week of rest Lee Lim-saeng's squad appears to be in good shape for the visit of Daegu. After such a positive performance and result in their last outing, away to Gangwon, wholesale changes are not expected. However, Lee did shift formations halfway through that game and he may use a 3-4-3 formation from the off in this match. If that's the case, with Min Sang-gi serving a one game ban, then one of Kim Min-ho or Koh Myeong-seok would come in to make the extra man at the back.

Midfielder Elvis Sarić is now back in training after overcoming a back problem but he probably won't be fit for this game, although we can expect to see him back in blue over the coming weeks. Winger Waguininho has had a tough time since returning from the horrific injury that he suffered last season and he wasn't included in last week's matchday squad. Han Seok-hui took his place to make his debut, and an impressive debut at that. The 23 year old dazzled as an impact substitute and could be set for an extended run in the team.

The Adversary

Daegu FC returned back home on Thursday afternoon from Hiroshima with nothing to show for their efforts but disappointment and fatigue.

For the game against Sanfrecce Hiroshima, Daegu Manager Andre made two changes to the starting lineup with Dario and Park Han-bin came into the team which caused a significant amount of difficulties for Daegu from the beginning. Although substitute Edgar offered a bit more upfront in the second half, tired Daegu looked unable to find a way to power through the Violet’s defence.

Andre must be in a dilemma about how to rotate an exhausted squad ahead of two consecutive matches in Suwon; against the Suwon Bluewings on Sunday in the K League and against Suwon FC on the following Wednesday night in the FA Cup.

For the game at the weekend there are no suspended or injured players, after the previously injured Edgar made an appearance in the ACL in midweek. Ryu Jae-moon completed 90 minutes in the Reserve League in midweek also while he finds his way back to full fitness. Fatigue will be the only issue that hinders the Sky Blues. As a result, we might see some new faces in the team who have maintained their fitness in the Reserve League during this busy period.

Tactically, as usual, Daegu will sit back in a 3-4-1-2 formation with an emphasis on counterattack.

- Muyeol Jung

Who To Watch

The Bluewings struggled in defence in the early stages of the season conceding eight goals in their first three games. However, since Cho Sung-jin came back into the centre of the defence their defensive performances have increased significantly and with only one goal conceded in their last three matches it's safe to say that Cho's addition to the starting lineup has shored things up at the back.

The 28 year old has been vital to Suwon's unbeaten run winning 69% of his aerial duels and successfully completing 62% of his actions. Cho also has completed 81% of his passes, recycling possession well and supplying the midfielders.

Suwon's defence still isn't the well oiled machine that it should be but there are signs that it is moving in the right direction, and with Cho in fine form Suwon will be hoping to keep a few more clean sheets over the coming weeks.

Prediction

It would have been easy to predict a Daegu win in this game only two weeks ago but their recent stutters against Gyeongnam, Seongnam and Hiroshima see's Daegu enter this game in a whole different atmosphere. The doom and gloom that had clouded Suwon over March has now subsided and it's actually the Bluewings who enter this game in better form. It's fair to say that Suwon are Daegu's bogey team and they could find it to be another difficult 90 minutes in Suwon.

Suwon Bluewings 2-0 Daegu FC

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