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scouting

Can Gangwon triumph against Suwon?


Following on from an extended absence due to COVID quarantine and an international break, Gangwon will be hoping they can pick up where they left off almost a month ago when they travel to Suwon. The home side come into this fixture unbeaten in three, as well as with just one loss in their last ten matches, meaning this is likely to be a tough away outing for the Bears.

Recent Form

Sitting at 4th place in the table, Suwon have been formidable since the post-ACL break. With just one loss in the last ten matches, and notable wins against league leaders Ulsan and reigning champions Jeonbuk both coming during this impressive run, Kim Do-kyun's men have proven they can compete with anyone in the league. And, even though the strong form has wavered somewhat as of late, with two draws and a loss occurring in the last five games, Suwon are still likely to be confident of success going forward. 

However, recently Gangwon FC are beginning to look a much stronger side themselves. After numerous missed opportunities meant that they might end up being pulled into a relegation battle, the Bears have steadied themselves reasonably as of late, winning two of their last five games and managing a hard-fought draw along the way. They're not secure yet, though, particularly given that recent postponements have disallowed any chance of gaining an advantage on fellow strugglers Seongnam and FC Seoul, so will want to prove their survival credentials once more this Sunday.

[READ: What’s happened to Suwon Samsung Bluewings?]

Team News

Following his sending off against Jeonbuk, goalkeeper Hyun Yoo will be absent for Suwon this week. Elsewhere though, the squad is generally healthy, with creative outlet Murilo, Jeong Dong-ho, and long-term absentee Yoon Young-sun the only concerns.

In the wake of the team’s COVID isolation, and subsequent postponement of three matches, the availability of Kim Byung-soo's squad is hard to gauge. Should they be fit and healthy, Lee Bum-soo, Lim Chai-min, Kim Dong-hyun and Ko Moo-yeol should form the spine of the team, with Rim Chang-woo, Cho Jae-wan and the returning Kim Young-bin likely to play a significant role too. New signings Matija Ljujic and Momchil Tsvetanov may also play a part, but Han Kook-young should find that this game still comes too soon for a return after his recent injury troubles.

Head-to-Head

After a dogged 0-0 draw in the last meeting, both sides will want better coming into this fixture. With a fairly even head-to-head record (three wins for Suwon, four for Gangwon, and three draws), this could go either way, even if recent fortunes would suggest that the home side are favourites.

What to Watch

Will Suwon beat Gangwon for the second time this season?


Earlier in the season, Suwon's 2-1 victory against Gangwon proved to be something of a watershed moment in the campaign of the newly promoted side. Before then, Kim Do-kyun's men had won just once in all competitions (at that point, they had played ten games), whilst afterwards they managed to come out victorious twice in their next five. It was a slow progression, sure, but a subsequent resilient run of form following the extended Summer break means Suwon will look to once again come out victorious against the Bears, and this time emphasise their top-half credentials as opposed to survival hopes.

Will Gangwon improve their poor away form?


Whilst their impressive home form has helped Gangwon this season, their undesirable away results have not. Picking up just 9 out of a potential 36 points on the road throughout the campaign thus far, the worst record in the division, an end to such inconsistencies will be key to the Bears' chance of a strong finish. Given Suwon are currently 8th place on home form alone, this may be the fixture to address such poor form.

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