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Preview: Daejeon Hana Citizen vs Suwon Samsung Bluewings

Daejeon Hana Citizen host Suwon Samsung Bluewings this Sunday in Round 21 of the 2023 Hana 1Q K League 1 looking to end a run of three straight draws. The Bluewings, meanwhile, are on the prowl for a first win in eight to try and move off the foot of the table. 

Overview & Match Information

It's a fixture that's seen by some fans as the Football Capital Derby. The exact origins of the name are unclear but it centres on the passionate support of both clubs. Daejeon, despite finishing in the bottom half of the table for most of their previous spells in K League 1, often drew large crowds while the Bluewings are a club that's known for having a devoted and passionate fanbase. Both, at some point, have declared their respective cities as the capital of football - Daejeon the football capital of South Korea while Suwon was declared as a football special city. 

Daejeon, as a club, are in the ascendency. Currently sitting in the top six and having toppled some genuine heavyweights like champions Ulsan Hyundai, Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors, FC Seoul, and their opponents this Sunday, Suwon Samsung Bluewings. New-money Daejeon are targeting a second win over the K League aristocracy of the Bluewings, something that the Purples haven't done since 2004. For the Bluewings, with a second relegation playoff at best seemingly on the cards for a second year in a row, it signals the all of an empire.

Competition: 2023 Hana 1Q K League 1 Round 21
Venue: Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Date: Sun. 9th July 2023, 19:00 KST

Recent Form

A 0-0 draw away to FC Seoul last Saturday meant it was three stalemates in a row for Daejeon, after a 1-1 draws away to Jeju and at home to Gwangju in the two rounds prior. For unbeaten with points picked up against teams close to Daejeon in the table is more than respectable and a run of four unbeaten gives the Purples a solid foundation to take into the third round robin of the season. 

Suwon are on a run of seven without victory, though, with five losses. This run extends to eight in all competitions when taking into account the recent FA Cup quarterfinal loss to Incheon United. Throughout that run, Suwon have conceded 11 and scored five, pointing to where the team's problems lie. The Bluewings' last win came on 13th May away to Gangwon FC. 

Form Last Five

Daejeon: LWDDD
Suwon: LLDLD

Head-to-Head

In what was Daejeojn's first trip to Big Bird to face the Bluewings in eight years, in Round 4 back in March, the Purples ran out 3-1 winners. A sumptuous curler from Lee Jin-hyun got Daejeon up and running on 62 minutes only for Maxwell Acosty to peg the Purples back six minutes later with a stunning strike of his own. 

However, Daejeon found a breakthrough in the 90th minute with young defender Byun Jun-soo nodding home from on the line after Anton Kryvotsyuk had headed the ball towards him across goal. A third was found in time added on with defender Kim Min-duk channelling his inner Roberto Carlos with the outside of his foot into the near post. 

There have been 57 previous meetings between the two teams with Daejeon winning just 12, Suwon 29, and 16 draws. Suwon have far outscored Daejeon, too, with 88 goals to 48. 

Team News

Kang Yoon-sung could make his second debut for the club having recently sealed a move back to Daejeon from Jeju United. Daejeon will be hoping that Leandro is available for selection again after the Brazilian forward missed both the trips to Jeju and Seoul. The former Seoul E-Land man is back in training and could be involved come Sunday. Young forward Jeon Byeong-kwan is also back in training but centre back Cho Yu-min is a long-term absentee while left back Seo Young-jae is unlikely to feature. 

Defender Park Dae-won is suspended having picked up his fifth booking of the season in the 1-1 draw with Daegu last time out. Dave Bulthuis is unlikely to feature with his future at the club a doubt and striker An Byong-jun could miss out through injury. However, Ko Mu-yeol has been registered as a Suwon Bluewings player and could make his debut, as too Japanese midfielder Kazuki Kozuka who has joined the club from Kawasaki Frontale. Korean international midfielder Kwon Chang-hoon has been ruled out.

FNR


Who to Watch

Tiago Orobo, Daejeon Hana Citizen


A fit Leandro will make a big difference. His absence was noticeable against both Jeju and Seoul in recent weeks. However, in the event of the Brazilian not being available, his compatriot Tiago Orobo will bear the burden of being Daejeon's main goal threat. Tiago has made the step up to K League 1 fairly comfortably and has scored seven goals so far this season from 18 appearances. He's also sixth in K League 1 for touches in the box, 12th for total shots - the highest among all Daejeon players - and is sixth for headed shots. He has scored some very important goals, too, such as their first back in the top flight in eight years, and goals matches that have helped earn four extra points. He has operated as the lone striker for the last three matches but has mostly been flanked by two wide forwards in a three. 

Maxwell Acosty, Suwon Samsung Bluewings


Maxwell Acosty has scored against Daejeon already this season and his record for his previous club FC Anyang was also very good. In fact, he managed three assists in a single game against Daejeon last season to help Anyang onto a 3-2 win at Purple Arena. Only Lee Ki-je has made more deep completions for Suwon this season than Acosty. The former Fiorentina forward will probably have extra motivation to beat Daejeon given that it was the Purples who ended Anyang's playoff dreams in 2021. Acosty has had one or two injuries this term but is back and ready to help pull Suwon out of the mire. He has mostly been deployed from the right in a front three but has played as a centre forward in games and from the left.

Where to Watch


Follow the match LIVE, for FREE, and in HD on TV.KLeague.com.

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