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Preview: Gwangju FC vs Seoul E-Land

Preview: Gwangju FC vs Seoul E-Land K League 2 Round 12
Coming off the back of their first defeat of the season, Gwangju FC will look to get back to winning ways in the league as they host Seoul E-Land in the K League 2. Park Jin-seop will know that this fixture represents a fabulous opportunity to build on their last-gasp draw in Busan against such an out-of-form side as E-Land.

Last Time Out

Suwon Bluewings 3-0 Gwangju (FA Cup)

The Yellow's second string fell to a convincing defeat against top-tier side Suwon missing out on a clear path to the semi-finals by facing National League opposition in the next round. In truth Wednesday night saw a mismatch on the pitch in terms of calibre and experience. That know-how and quality certainly showed after a spirited Gwangju side conceded to a Shin Se-gye strike on the stroke of half time. After the break the visitors did little to suggest a comeback was on the cards, spending most of the second 45 dealing with the host's full-strength attacking line-up. Bosnia and Herzegovina international Elvis Saric fired possibly the goal of the round to make things comfortable before Han Eui-gwon added gloss with a late third.

Daejeon Korail 2-0 Seoul E-Land (FA Cup)

Seoul E-Land's main joy this season had stemmed from an FA Cup run which saw them one win from the quarter-finals. Facing Daejeon opposition for the second time inside a few days, they fared worse against the lower league side than against their professional counterparts. Crashing out of the Cup and missing a last-eight tie with Gangwon, first-half goals from Kwak Chul-ho and Kim Sang-gyun were enough to see off the visitors. E-Land could find some hope from their last league outing, which saw them draw 1-1 against Daejeon Citizen to put an end to three straight defeats.

Team News

Gwangju manager Park Jin-seop's decision to make wholesale changes and effectively send a reserve side to Suwon, is a clear message to the rest of the league where his priorities lie. With captain Yeo Reum, regular Park Jeong-soo and star striker Felipe not even among the substitutes, Park is clearly not underestimating a Seoul side that were swept away with ease on the opening day. One first teamer that did make the trip north on Wednesday night was Lee Hee-gyun, most likely a result of his absence from this Monday's clash due to suspension. The void left by the young wingers absence is likely to be filled by Willyan Barbosa, who is still looking for his first goal for the club. The Yellow's will also be without mainstay centre-back Lee Han-do once more, completing the final match of his ban after his straight red against Jeonnam. Both absent from the squad in midweek, you would expect Rustam Ashurmatov and Kim Jin-hwan to resume their partnership in defence.

Talisman Felipe and midfielder Park Jeong-soo are both expected to return


The Adversary


Seoul E-Land were in FA Cup action in midweek as they traveled down to Daejeon to face National League side Daejeon Korail. After a painful, slow and dull 90 minutes of football, E-Land crashed out of the competition, losing 2-0.

Kim Hyun-soo went with youth, totally underestimating the power of Daejeon who struck two quick goals. A sweet volley and an unmarked header in the first half was all that was needed. The team looked amateur, failing to pass the ball, and constantly putting it out of play. There was no spirit, no passion, and serious questions need to be asked about the performance of the side and the management.

Seoul will now try to pick themselves up and travel to Gwangju, a team who battered them last time around. The squad have a long way to go from here to avoid any further embarrassment. Feast your eyes on the laughing stock of the K League.
-Michael Redmond

Who To Watch


Even though he had a pretty quiet game in the last round of the K League 2, Douglas Coutinho is a prolific goal scorer and only needs a couple of moments in a game to make his presence known.  Working with small space against Daejeon Citizen, he managed to dance around the defenders and slot the ball home, saving the Leopards from another defeat. The Brazliian will look to finally get a goal against the league leaders Gwangju with his pace upfront.
-Michael Redmond

Prediction

Even the most ardent of Seoul E-Land fans would struggle to come up with a compelling case for them bringing Gwangju's unbeaten league record to an end. The hosts have bagged two or more goals in four of their six home games this term and I would back them to do so again under the lights on Monday. While it seems as though even those on the fringes of Seoul's starting eleven could muster some fight in midweek, you would hope that a sense of pride brings about at least an improved performance from the visitors.

This match will all be about the first goal, should it come early for Gwangju we could see a rout. However, as seen in a couple of previous matches at the Guus Huddink Stadium this season, a rise in expectation from the home fan base has resulted in some tetchy moments when things haven't gone their way from the off.

Predicted Score: Gwangju FC 4-1 Seoul E-Land


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