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Preview: Daegu FC vs FC Seoul

Preview: Daegu FC vs FC Seoul K League 1 Round 16
Fourth placed Daegu FC, six points adrift from third placed FC Seoul, host Choi Yongsoo's side at DGB Daegu Bank this Saturday night looking to narrow the gap between themselves and the top three. Meanwhile, the visitors are hoping to keep up with the leaders with just two points separating Seoul and top spot. Daegu FC Columnist Muyeol Jung previews what could be vital encounter in race for the K League title.

Last Time Out

Daegu FC 2-2 Gangwon FC

After the international break, Daegu FC invited Gangwon FC to DGB Daegu Bank Park. The hosts had some bad luck from the beginning, and were trailing 1-0 after Daegu defender Kim Wooseok put the ball into his own goal in attempt to clear it away with less than a minute on the clock. However, the hosts quickly found an equaliser through Kim Daewon whose shot made its way along the ground to the far post from the edge of the box. Afterwards, despite the fact that the hosts continued to attack, went in at the half 2-1 down after Cho Jaewan chipped the ball over Korean international goalkeeper Jo Hyeonwoo after sneaking behind Daegu’s back three.

The second half became scrappy but somewhat eventful due to adverse weather conditions in Daegu. Very intense hail struck and forced the match to stop for a couple of minutes until said hail turned into heavy rain. In the middle of the downpour, both teams were unable to make any meaningful chances before 10 minutes of stoppage time was given.

Daegu finally found an equaliser after a couple of good chances were denied; Daegu substitute Ryu Jaemoon put a low cross to the right of the Gangwon goalkeeper and into the back of net with his left foot from inside the box. Thanks to Ryu’s vital goal, Daegu FC remain unbeaten at their home ground in K League.

Highlights: here

FC Seoul 4-2 Suwon Samsung Bluewings

With 32,000 in attendance at Seoul World Stadium on Sunday night, FC Seoul continued their fine form against their arch-rival Suwon Samsung Bluewings after 4-2 win.

Just ten minutes after the kick off, Spanish defender Osmar put the capital team 1-0 ahead with a powerful missile from a direct free-kick. Five minutes later, the visitors quickly responded with a good team move down the left flank, which led to a goal from Han Euikwon inside the six-yard box. After a couple of more chances created by both teams, the first half ended in stalemate.

In the second half, the Bluewings started to push harder for the win by bringing on Socceroo Adam Taggart in for defensive midfielder Choi Sungkeun. The change immediately started to work well with the Australian a danger upfront, former Seoul striker Dejan also came close by hitting the foot of the post.

However, Choi Yongsoo’s boys finally restored their lead when Serbian striker Aleksandar Pešić put the ball into the back of net after a few critical chances wasted. In spite of Suwon’s constant efforts, the home side made it 4-1 through another goal each from Osmar and Pešić before Suwon substitute Adam Taggart pulled a goal back thanks to the Bosinian midfielder Sarić's second assist of the night.

Match Report: here

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

Head to head, Daegu FC are behind FC Seoul with 10 wins and 11 draws to Seoul’s 15 wins. During the most recent ten meetings between the two teams, the citizen club have only managed to pull off two wins with four draws.

The latest meeting was held at Seoul World Cup Stadium on 11th May where Daegu’s fine run was halted by Choi Yongsoo’s side after 2-1 loss. Thanks to the victory, Seoul moved up to third place and above Daegu FC. However, some contentious refereeing in this match left Daegu fans and players fuming, including Jeong Taewook who suffered a broken nose in aerial duel with Spanish midfielder Osmar.

Team News

In the previous game against Gangwon FC, Daegu somehow managed to pick up a point and continued their unbeaten run at DGB Daegu Bank Park for this season, but what they showed during the game was not all that promising.

First of all, Daegu have the fewest goals conceded in K League, but two goals conceded against Gangwon showed that they may need to work on defensive cohesion in order to limit the space between the back three and wing-backs. Right wing-back Jang Sungwon was taken off after the score went to 2-1 at half time, but this has been a major weakness for Daegu this season.

Also, one of Andre's key assets, Brazilian striker Edgar doesn’t look as sharp as he has been previously after he returning from injury. During the game, Edgar had a dislocated shoulder but kept on playing after the treatment until he was eventually replaced by Ryu Jaemoon on 66 minutes. Therefore, the former Buriram United striker might not be available for selection at the weekend.

Meanwhile, following Tsubasa’s injury news, another Brazilian Dario, brought in to bolster Daegu's attacking options, did not live up to the expectations and parted ways with the Sky Blues after only three appearances for the club. Reportedly, Daegu FC are looking to add reinforcements during the transfer window.

To make things worse, Daegu's bench offers little in the way of attacking options and so Andre has been forced to go with two midfielders and one wingback in previous games, even when in search for a goal. Therefore, the Sky Blues desperately need to find a way to score when plan A doesn’t go well.

Against FC Seoul, Daegu have no suspended players and most of the first team squad should be available for selection except for the aforementioned Edgar and Tsubasa. If Edgar drops out of the squad, then Jung Seungwon will likely step up as wing forward alongside Kim Daewon and Cesinha. Korea U20 international Ko Jaehyun returned to the team after a successful World Cup campaign where he featured in three games and will be available for the visit of Seoul.

The Adversary

Third placed FC Seoul have been in a very good form along with Jeonbuk Hyundai and Ulsan Hyundai at the top of the table. Currently, the capital team are unbeaten in their last seven games with fives wins and two draws including three straight wins.

T season, Choi Yongsoo’s side usually line up in a 3-1-4-2 or 3-5-2 formation and their attacking ability looks as strong as it has for a long time. One thing to note is that Seoul have scored more than two goals in each game which they won. Particularly, team play among Park Chuyoung, Pešić, Go Yohan, and Ikromjob Alibaev in the attacking third of the pitch has been very entertaining. Also, Serbian striker Aleksandar Pešić is the top scorer with nine goals in the league after he added two goals to his tally in the Super Match.

KLUPod: FC Seoul's Osmar Ibanez Barba and Aleksandar Pešić talk about their Super Match Braces

FC Seoul will come down to DGB Daegu Bank Park for the first time having no players suspended and the majority of squad should be available ahead of the weekend game. Defenders Lee Woonghee, Kim Wonkyun and Kim Namchun remain a doubt however, as is veteran midfielder Ha Daesung. Manager Choi Yongsoo is likely to go with the same team selection which beat both Gyeongnam and Suwon. Meanwhile, U20 World Cup star Cho Youngwook returned to the team after successful campaign in Poland. He was also regular for the capital team and he will likely make the bench at the weekend.

What To Watch

Daegu players and fans are looking forward to this match more than ever after the Sky Blues' Towering centre back Jeong Taewook was hit in his nose by Osmar in an aerial duel during the 2-1 loss when these two sides last met. Daegu fans and players alike are eager to avenge the defeat.

Tactically, Andre’s side tend to have difficulty in effectively attacking against teams which use a back three and with an emphasis of counterattacking as Daegu do. Statistics indicate that the capital team tend not to have possession football and try to counterattack after winning the ball back. Their overall possession ranges from 35% to 50% percentage and, as a result, the game will likely be a touch scrappy in the middle. In order to open the scoring, set pieces will be another key strategy which Daegu may need to capitalise on using the likes of Jeong Taewook or Hong Jungwoon.

Less than 1000 tickets were left out of 12,000 capacity, and more than 500 traveling fans are expected to make the trip to Daegu on Saturday night. The atmosphere in the stadium will be electric and is set to be the sixth sell out home game Daegu have hosted in all competitions this season.


As shown, Daegu have suffered due to a lack of attacking options available from the bench, and playing against an on-fire FC Seoul side is going to be a real test for the citizen club.

Predicted score: Daegu FC 1-2 FC Seoul

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