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Preview: Daegu FC vs Suwon Samsung Bluewings

With two points separating Daegu FC and Suwon Samsung Bluewings, both mid-table sides are looking to add more points to their tally to move up the table. K League United's Daegu FC correspondent Muyeol Jung previews this match up in Round 8.

Last Time Out

Busan IPark 2-2 Daegu FC

It was a truly disappointing Wednesday night at Busan Gudeok Stadium where a late late penalty from the hosts' Brazilian Rômulo cancelled out Daegu FC's 2-1 lead. Daegu FC had a good start to the game with an early goal from Cesinha on 12 minutes, but they entered the break in a 1-1 draw after Busan's Lee Jeonghyeop converted the penalty after he won it.

The second half was all about Busan, who looked fierce in their desire for an overdue three points. Despite their efforts, lackluster Daegu FC rode their luck and regained their lead through Lee Jinhyun's attempt. The Sky Blues looked on their way to get a third straight win, but unfortunately, they dropped the points after a second penalty was given to Busan after Edgar's handball was pointed out in stoppage time.


Seongnam FC 0-2 Suwon Samsung Bluewings

Suwon Bluewings pulled off a bit of surprising win against Seongnam in the midweek thanks to two first half goals from Adam Taggart and Kim Minwoo. It was a cagey start, but Suwon made their few chances count from the left hand side at halfway through the first half.

From the second half, the hosts Seongnam pushed for a goal and effectively created goal scoring opportunities through switching play. Unluckily, Suwon's shot stopper No Dongkeon was able to keep them at bay until the final whistle.


Previous Meetings

The Sky Blues have always been minnows against the Giant Football Club Bluewings as Daegu FC have only recorded three wins in the 18 year old club's history, while Suwon have swept up the points by winning 23 times out of 36 meetings (63.8%).

However, since Daegu's comeback to the top flight in 2017, the rejuvenated club seem to have narrowed the gap slightly. During that period, Daegu FC bagged seven points in nine games with one win and four draws, while Bluewings had four wins. Daegu's only win recorded in the 2018 season came alone nine years later after their previous win in 2009.

Team News

Daegu FC

The hosts have no players injured or suspended for this Sunday's action except long-term injured Hong Jungwoon.

Since Daegu's first win of the season in Round 5, caretaker Lee Byunggeun hasn't made any single change to his line up in the last three games. However, this weekend he might go with different combinations of players following a sign of fatigue seen on starters. Nevertheless, I suspect the line-up will remain unchanged unless there's any unreported issues.

Suwon Bluewings

The visitors have Korea international wing back Hong Chul and midfielder Choi Sungkeun out with injuries, but the rest of the squad will be available for a trip to Daegu without any suspensions.

Manager Lee Imsaeng's selection will be expected to be similar to the side that beat Seongnam last time out. They also had a midweek game, but the fatigue issues wouldn't be that significant as they have one more day to recover.

The Adversary

2019 FA Cup holders Bluewings had the worst start to the 2020 campaign with three straight defeats after a 1-0 loss in the AFC Champions League. After that, Suwon's lads thankfully pulled off 1-0 win over Incheon through a spot kick, but they were nowhere near close to turning things around on prolonged questionable performances against promoted sides.

However, having the victory last time out can be a turning point for stumbling Lee Imsaeng's side to see everything turn around. Particularly, it is encouraging that 2019 K League Golden Boot winner Adam Taggart finally opened his 2020 account for his team after a long goal drought and Kim Minwoo has helped his side with two goals in his last two games.

Kim Minwoo's left footed strike found the back of the net twice

This season, defensive midfielder Ko Seungbeom and Canadian international Doneil Henry are the standout for Suwon's side in defence. When it comes to attacking, Suwon's left hand side still remains their main route. The recent two goals came from their left flank by left footed Kim Minwoo and Yeom Kihun.

Therefore, Daegu FC should be ready to effectively handle Suwon's lofty reliance on the left side. If they can manage it, then three points isn't far away.

What To Watch

Can Daegu FC overcome "Suwon Bluewings phobia"?

It has never been easy for Daegu FC to play against Suwon even on home turf as head to head records suggest above. For some reason, Daegu FC become daunted and belittled against Bluewings, whilst Suwon Bluewings easily get the results they want for many years even when they are out of form. For instance, last season when Daegu FC were sensational, while Suwon ended up being in the relegation round, unfortunately, Daegu FC were unable to defeat Suwon once with only two goalless draws.

2019 K League sensational side Daegu FC became hopeless when they met Suwon Bluewings

However, the gap between the two sides appears to be almost negligible in recent years. Last season the two draws could have been six points for Daegu. The citizen club literally dominated the entire 90 minutes in two games and ruthlessly bombarded to break the deadlocks, but they didn't find a way past Suwon's goalkeeper No Dongkeon.

Perhaps, it couldn't be a better chance for Daegu FC to completely overcome "Suwon phobia" this time when Suwon are not at their best yet.

Can Former Suwon men impress their former team?

It will be the first game for former Suwon men caretaker Lee Byunggeun and Montenegrin striker Dejan Damjanović to face their former team this Sunday.

The manager had been with the Bluewings as coach for six years until he eventually joined the Sky Blues ahead of the 2019 season. Interestingly, he went down a similar path as a player; he played the entire his professional football in Suwon Bluewings before the Suwon legendary defender came down to Daegu in 2006 at his twilight.

Former Suwon Bluewings striker Dejan Damjanović now became the Sky Blue man

K League legendary striker Dejan Damjanović found himself in a similar situation as his boss did. The striker had a two-year spell with Suwon before he joined Daegu this year. In his second year, he became less and less favoured in manager Lee Imsaeng's plan and his relationship with the club died out even before the season officially came to an end.

I am sure two former Suwon men wouldn't let their history impact them as they are professionals, but for the fans who will watch this game, it will be more interesting to see the game with more context in mind.

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On paper, Daegu FC look strong enough to beat Suwon Bluewings, but concern is how much they can physically recover by the match day and how long they can endure in a scorching summer. I think this game will eventually end in a 1-1 draw.

Daegu FC 1-1 Suwon Bluewings

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