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The Leopards Looking Up: Seoul E-Land Vs Gyeongnam FC

The 2024 K League 2 season has been marked by memorable and dramatic moments already this year, and that is largely thanks to Seoul E-Land FC. The capital club has managed to become the second team for football fans with their exciting football and drive for promotion.

To add, Seoul have managed to come back in multiple games this year, something quite rare for the side in the past. The Leopards managed to come from 1-0 down against Suwon Samsung Bluewings in the previous round of fixtures to secure a 3-1 victory. The win put Seoul in 3rd place in what is becoming a tightly contested season. This week Seoul welcomes Gyeongnam FC to Leoul Park, a side that has already taken points off the Leopards this year. Michael Redmond looks ahead at this one.

Match Details

Match: Seoul E-Land Vs Gyeongnam FC
Date: Saturday, 1st June 2024
Time: 7PM Seoul, 5PM Bangkok, 11AM Manchester
Venue: Leoul Park (Mokdong Stadium), Seoul, South Korea

Superstars in the Supermatch

Saturday night brought Seoul E-Land to the Suwon World Cup Stadium for the first time in its existence. After beating Suwon 2-1 earlier in the season at Leoul Park, the Bluewings were looking to avoid further embarrassment.

With over 11,000 fans in attendance, it was Suwon who drew first blood in this encounter as Mulic put the side ahead in the 42nd minute. It may have looked as if Seoul bit off more than they could chew as Suwon had the majority of the game and attacking options.

However, Suwon decided later in the second half to switch off and Seoul played until the final whistle. Add the fact that Lee Dong-ryul decided he wanted to be a goal-of-the-season contender in the 86th minute when he lobbed the ball over Yang Hyung-mo and levelled the score from outside of the box.

A truly wonderful goal and the away end was rocking. It did not end there, for the Leopards were given a free kick in injury time. In the second minute of the seven minutes allocated, Park Min-seo crossed in his free kick from the outside of the box. This cross met no one apart from the back of the Suwon net. Seoul managed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

With being 2-1 up in injury time, most teams would have sat back. However, Lee Dong-ryul had other ideas and wanted to continue his goal prowess, taking the ball in the dying moments of the game and curling it in from outside the box to make it three.

Seoul E-Land, whatever Lee Dong-ryul had for breakfast on Saturday morning, please forward me a link.

Full time: Suwon Samsung Bluewings 1-3 Seoul E-Land


The Gripe of Gyeongnam

Gyeongnam have already recorded a win against Seoul E-Land this season. However, in recent form, they are far from the same calibre as the capital side. The Changwon outfit have only recorded one win in five and currently sits in 11th place out of 13.

This feels like the roles have reversed for someone who has followed the K League 2 for so long as it does appear that Gyeongnam are struggling this season.

They fell 1-0 in the previous round to Chungbuk Cheongju, recording their seventh loss of the season. To put that into perspective, that is 50% of their games, something not really expected of a side that manages to reach the playoffs almost every single year.

It looks as if their defence is letting them down. They have already shipped 22 goals this season and have scored only 17 goals. Gyeongnam will look to change their fortunes when they play Seoul on the weekend.

With that being said, the K League 2 is really tight once again this year. Seoul sit in 3rd but they are only seven points ahead of Gyeongnam. Given the climate of the K League 2, Gyeongnam could see themselves ahead of Seoul in a month or two if things went their way. This truly is an unpredictable league.

Who is Scoring Next?

If you wanted to put Seoul E-Land’s 2024 campaign into one word it would have to be ‘goals’. The Leopards have been scoring for fun and already have 28 goals this year, the highest in the league at the time of this publication. To put things into perspective, they are now only eight goals off matching their 2023 campaign with 36 goals in 36 games. They are currently on their 14th game and have been scoring for fun.

Given the fact that Seoul also have seven different scorers this year, Bruno Silva is the top goalscorer in the division with nine goals, Ikoba is on six. The heroics of Lee Dong-ryul in the last round put him on four.

Seoul have a team who are firing on all cylinders and will look to improve their goal tally come the weekend.

Props also have to be given to their defensive record. They have only conceded 14 goals this year, third in the league behind Cheongju and Anyang. Seoul sit with the best goal difference in the league and have really improved upon last season.

It is also important to note that Seoul did also have that dip in form after the first time they played the Bluewings earlier in the year. They will hope that this is not repeated on Saturday when they welcome Gyeongnam.

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Seoul's Possible Dream

The K League 2 is always unpredictable as we know. We have one team in great form coming against a team in poor form.

However, that really means nothing at times in this league. Gyeongnam have a knack of drawing Seoul’s number in this fixture and it will be interesting to see if they can change their fortunes on the weekend.

For Seoul, they will hope to continue to march up the K League 2 table and hope that Jeonnam Dragons and FC Anyang begin to slip up. The gap between 1st and 3rd is only five points, yet Anyang have a game in hand and will have to start dropping more careless points if Seoul are to have any chance of catching up with them.

However, if a team like Manchester United can upset the apple cart like they did in last weekend’s FA Cup final, then I’m sure Seoul can recreate the same motion.

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