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Gwangju salvage draw against frustrated Seoul

Park Jin-sub's FC Seoul were denied their first win since Round 6 of Hana 1Q K League 1 as Kim Jong-woo's stoppage-time penalty cancelled out Na Sang-ho's first-half strike. After a finale shrouded in drama, both were forced to settle for a point with the visitors climbing to ninth in the table.

Gwangju FC 1-1 FC Seoul - What happened?


Kim Ho-young left both foreign players on the bench as he opted for a change to his midfield dynamic. Perhaps a nod to Seoul's strength in the centre of the park, Kim started with his most experienced central midfielders. However, experience was not the order of the day up front with 20-year-old Heo Yool starting his first game for the club having been touted as a promising academy prospect for years. 

After a cagey opening half hour played in sweltering conditions, the game opened up with Yang Han-been alert to deny Heo Yool a first career goal. At the other end Na Sang-ho broke the offside trap to round Yoon Bo-sang and give Seoul the lead at the break.

In the second half, having not tasted victory since March in the Super Match, Seoul naturally began to drop back. Han Hee-hoon pleaded with the referee for a penalty but only succeeded in getting himself booked for dissent. The Yellows had a chance to salvage a point came through half-time substitute Kim Ju-gong who failed to connect properly with through one-on-one with Yang Han-been.

Incredible drama in stoppage time saw Kim Jong-woo's spot kick saved after Heo Yool was adjudged fouled in the box. After the full time whistle had been blown, the referee ordered the penalty to be retaken following VAR consultation and Gwangju got a reprieve. Kim Jong-woo made no mistake at the second attempt. In remonstration's following the second final whistle, Park Chu-young was shown a red card for dissent.

Old Boys Reunion

Collecting three points on his first return to the team where he gained promotion and earned a top-six finish last season, Park Jin-sub will have been more concerned with the vital three points rather than nostalgia. Pushing Hong Jun-ho back into central defence of late, who spent five seasons at Gwangju making 22 appearances last season, the 27-year-old looked far more comfortable than in his awkward stints up front.

Lee Han-do's Century


Into his fifth season at the club having signed from Jeolla neighbours Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors, Lee Han-do reached 100 games for the club he helped to steer back from the second tier in 2019. As is customary in the K League, he was given a small ceremony prior to kick off. Lee has been in good individual form this season despite Gwangju's position in the table, ranking first in K League 1 for shots blocked and also in the top ten for interceptions.

A Five-Week Wait

In accordance with the rest of K League 1, both of these sides must wait five weeks due to AFC Champions League interruption. Heading into the enforced summer break nailed to the bottom of the table by Seoul is far from ideal for Gwangju's survival hopes. However, it does give both sides the opportunity to strengthen in the transfer window with the pair clearly lacking a natural striker. In Gwangju's case, Felipe appears to have left for China after a successful 2.5 year spell at the club with the club wasting no time to find a replacement as former Suwon Samsung Bluewings striker Jonathan is rumoured to have joined on loan.

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