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Preview: Incheon United vs Suwon Bluewings

Half way into the 2019 K League season and Incheon United find themselves deep in the relegation battle with only two wins and ten goals to their name. They take on the inconsistent Suwon Bluewings on Wednesday evening in what might be a winnable encounter.


Last Time Out

Ulsan Hyundai 1-0 Incheon United
Incheon once again paid the price for over defensive tactics and a lack of attacking options this past weekend losing narrowly to Ulsan Hyundai. Both sides favored rotated lineups with midweek fixtures coming up with Incheon resting big names like Stefan Mugosa and keeper Jang San. The first half was pretty even with both sides creating solid half chances. The best opening of the half saw a long range effort from Incheon midfielder Jung Hoon-sung crash back off the bar.

In the second half, Ulsan Hyundai took more control of the game forcing Incheon to play deeper and deeper. As the game entered into its final stages it seemed like Incheon would be able to hold out for an away point, but no. A fortunate deflection saw a cross land in front of Brazilian forward Junior Negao who volleyed home the winner after eighty-six minutes. Incheon tried in vain to muster a comeback but it was too little too late. Ulsan took the three points and Incheon went home empty handed once again.

Highlights: here

Suwon Bluewings 2 - 0 Jeju United
Suwon Bluewings eased to a routine victory on Sunday evening against struggling Jeju United. Following some early pressure Adam Taggart gave Suwon the lead after just nine minutes, his eighth goal of the season. Following the goal Suwon continued to dominate the half and just before half time doubled their lead as Choi Sung-geun headed home a Hong Chul corner.

During the second half Jeju United improved and created the better chances. However, aside from a disallowed goal ten minutes from time they couldn't find a way past FA Cup Hero No Dong-geon, the keeper who had a great game. In the end Suwon picked up an important three points to move themselves back into mid-table safety.

Highlights: here

Previous Meetings

Incheon United and Suwon Bluewings clashed at the end of March with Suwon picking up a 3-1 victory at the Suwon World Cup Stadium. Last season they played each other three times with Suwon winning two (including a 5-2 classic), and the final game ended in a goalless draw.

Incheon last beat Suwon at home all the way back in December 2013, with Lee Hyo-gyun scoring a late winner that day. Suwon beat Incheon away just last season winning 3-2 thanks, in part, to an injury time winner from Park Hyung-jin.

Over the years Incheon and Suwon have played each other forty-four times with the victories dominated by Suwon winning twenty-six to Incheon's five. The only thirteen games have ended in draws.

Team News

Incheon United Manager Yoo Sang-chul continues to favor heavy squad rotation to try and find something that works. No Incheon players are suspended for this game, however defender Kim Jeung-ho is a booking away from a ban. Also Gordan Bunoza should finally be back available for selection after missing the past few weeks traveling back home with his family. Recent signing from Jeju United Kim Ho-nam should also be available.

Who To Watch

Incheon United will again be hoping that Montenegrin striker and current top scorer Stefan Mugoša returns on Wednesday after missing the game down in Ulsan on Saturday. He is the main and only real outlet for goals at the moment and goals are what Incheon have been lacking all season.

Moving into the midfield which has been an issue for Incheon so far this season. Jung Hoon-sung played well against Ulsan, whilst Myung Jun-jae showed glimpses of why Jeonbuk value him. If Jiloan Hamad plays on Wednesday he can be dangerous if given an attacking role, such as the game against Gyeongnam a few weeks ago.

Finally at the back, keeper Jeong San plus key defenders Kim Jin-ya, Kim Jeung-ho and Gordan Bunoza all missed out against Ulsan, therefore they should be rested and ready to go. If not, backup keeper Lee Tae-hui had a solid game this past weekend and should be ready for the challenge Suwon present.

The Adversary

Suwon Bluewings won this past weekend as already mentioned extending their unbeaten run in all competitions to four. However they've only won twice away from home so far this season, with their last win on the road coming almost two months ago against Jeju United. Suwon's league table position is not a fair reflection of their current form and comes in part from a pretty awful start to the season. In recent times they've fared much better.

Heading into Wednesdays game against Incheon they know they should be able to build on their comfortable win over Jeju United when facing the league's bottom side. However, Incheon have caused issues for Suwon many times in the past and Suwon don't play so well against defensive tactics.

Watch out for Australian forward Adam Taggart, who is on form at the moment. He is scoring basically every other game. Also don't forget about veteran Dejan, who is always dangerous when playing his former club Incheon. Finally Hong Chul and No Dong-geon will be key assets trying to control the counting attacking style that Incheon like to use at the moment.

Prediction

Incheon have not been playing badly this season, however they just cannot find any consistency and this is partly due to the heavy squad rotation favored by new manager Yoo Sang-chul. Some players get a game every week whilst others pop up out of the blue. Hopefully he finds a core squad that works soon.

Looking at Wednesdays game Incheon have only won twice all season and both of those victories were against fellow relegation strugglers Gyeongnam and Jeju. They only have ten goals from their nineteen league game as well, the lowest in the league. Suwon on the other hand haven't been doing great but have at least picked up five points from their last three league games and progressed to the FA Cup semi finals last week.


Overall, Incheon need to start scoring goals and winning games, but they can't afford to fall behind the rest of the relegation pack. On Wednesday, however, I feel that Suwon will have the edge, especially going forward. The game might come alive in the second half, and I do see Incheon at least scoring. But at the end of the day Suwon will have a little too much for Incheon to handle.


Predicted Score: Incheon United 1 - 2 Suwon Bluewings


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