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scouting

Gangwon look to address their inconsistencies against league leaders Jeonbuk

Gangwon will be hoping that their consecutive missed opportunities to pull away from the lower-rungs of the table will not kickstart a slump as they go into a key home game against Jeonbuk. However, the visitors go into proceedings unbeaten this campaign, and will look to ensure that when the full-time whistle is blown on Saturday, that fact remains.

Recent Form

The Bears are starting to resemble an unenviably inconsistent side this season. They seem to miss every key chance to capitalise on any fortunes they carve out for themselves, but are still capable of producing magic which sees them catapulted up the table. It is impossible to predict which Gangwon will turn up on Saturday, but after back-to-back losses they will need to be at their best if they want to come away unscathed, and in turn avoid slipping further into trouble.

Jeonbuk, unlike their opposition, have been figures of prolonged consistency throughout their opening 11 games. Winning four out of their last five - the only points dropped came in a cagey affair away to Ulsan - the league-leaders will be hoping to extend their stranglehold on the division at the weekend. However, Kim Sang-sik's men have somewhat lost their attacking bite in the last two matches, so will look to remedy that to avoid a potential upset.

Team News

Gangwon come into the game hoping that Lee Bum-soo will be available to reclaim his place in goal, even if Kim Jung-ho deputised reasonably well on Tuesday. Elsewhere, Kim Dae-won will hope to play a more prominent role after he shone coming off the bench against Gwangju, whilst Rustamjon Ashurmatov should reclaim his place in the back three following the Bears' shaky defensive display last time out.

On the flip side, Jeonbuk go into the game with minimal disruptions. There may be some rotation, such as top goalscorer Stanislav Iljutcenko making way, but wholesale tinkering is likely to be minimal with an eight-day break on the horizon, especially when defensive performances have been improving.

Head-to-Head

The two teams have faced-off 24 times overall, with Jeonbuk winning in 17 of these meetings. However, after an impressive double over the Green Warriors last season, Gangwon will believe they have what it takes to cause an upset when on home soil, even if their unfortunate 2-1 away defeat back in March will leave the Bears feeling somewhat cautious.

What to Watch

Can Kim Byung-soo inspire his side?


At the culmination of Tuesday's game, Gangwon looked lost. Kim Dae-won was floored, evidently devastated at his team's loss (and his own missed chance to put the Bears in front near the start of the second-half). Ko Moo-yeol was downcast, forcing a smile as he shook hands with players and staff upon leaving the pitch. Other players were angered, arguing with officials over decisions that failed to go their way. But no matter the reaction of any individual or group on the pitch on Tuesday, the fact is there has to be one in the dugout on Saturday. Kim Byung-soo himself will know this better than anyone, and will understand that he has to find the ways to rejuvenate his discouraged, dejected squad ahead of this crunch clash.

Will Jeonbuk capitalise on opposition woes?


Failing to lose against any K League rival this season, Kim Sang-sik and co. will be looking to flex their dominance against a Gangwon side who look anything but confident. Scoring 12 in their last five games, the Green Warriors have plenty of reason to feel assured as they head into this game, and will look to dispatch of the Bears with aplomb.

Who to Watch

Lim Chai-min


In times of strife, it is often the captain who can steer a team in the right direction. With Gangwon now just three points away from the foot of the table, fans and players will look towards Lim Chai-min to use his experience to uplift his struggling teammates, and help spearhead an unlikely victory.

FNR

Match Prediction

Unfortunately for the Bears, it is likely that Jeonbuk will have too much quality and confidence to handle on Saturday. With the Green Warriors looking to get right back to winning ways following a midweek draw, it would be more than a shock if Gangwon came away with all three points.

Score prediction - Gangwon FC 0-2 Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors


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