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FA Cup Preview: FC Anyang vs Daegu FC

FC Anyang and Daegu FC will square off for the first time in four years in 2020 Korean FA Cup Round 3. Can the K League 2 side make another upset like they did last year by knocking out K League Champions Jeonbuk Hyundai in the 2019 FA Cup? Or, can 2018 FA Cup Champions Daegu slide into the next round? K League United's Daegu FC correspondent Muyeol Jung previews this match up in FA Cup Round 3.

Last Time Out

K League 2: Daejeon Hana Citizen 3-3 FC Anyang

Daejeon Hana Citizen and FC Anyang split the points in a six-goal thriller at Daejeon World Cup stadium. The hosts took the lead when Park Jinsub was met by a great long delivery on a free kick before the break. Within ten minutes into the second half, Daejeon doubled their lead through Bruno Baio's effort when the Brazilian had an encounter with Anyang's shot stopper on the counter attack.

After 2-0 down, the visitors quickly responded with two changes made and it paid off immediately. Maxwell Acosty pulled one back through a one-two pass with Nilson Junior in the middle. Afterwards, the former ACF Fiorentina attacker got his second of the evening with header on a corner before his side turned the game around thanks to a third from the substitute Maurides who looked very dangerous on the evening. Anyang looked on their way to take an overdue three points, but before full time, they dropped the points after Daejeon's Lee Jeongmoon put the loose ball into the net and made it 3-3.


K League 1: Daegu FC 2-1 Gangwon FC

Daegu FC proved themselves once more that they are the predators to Gangwon FC by beating them 2-1 at home and extended their unbeaten record to six. It was not the best start for the hosts due to Gangwon pressing high with physicality and threatening a few times with shots from distance.

The second half started in a similar fashion to the first half, but it was the hosts who took the lead when Edgar headed home. Afterwards, Daegu easily increased their lead through the penalty kick converted by Cesinha. Gangwon found a consolation in stoppage time when Go Mooyeol converted the spot kick after Kim Dongjin's handball was pointed out.


Previous Meetings

FC Anyang and Daegu FC have clashed 12 times only in K League 2 for three years from 2014 before Daegu FC came back to K League 1 in 2017. Among 12 league meetings, the Violets have won four times compared to the Sky Blue's two wins.

Team News

FC Anyang

FC Anyang will come to the cup game with majority of their regulars available for selection. However, manager Kim Hyungyeol may execute some experiments in this game by resting the regulars and giving playing time to others including new summer signings because the cup run doesn't realistically give much incentive to them sitting ninth out of ten teams in the league.

During the summer transfer window, the Violets bolstered their squad by signing wing back Park Yohan and Hwang Munki from Suwon FC and Portugeuse side Académica de Coimbra. With the wing back making his debut last time out in the league, both will be able to play the midweek game. In the goal, two goalkeepers Yang Dongwon and Jung Minki have shared the duties in turn and this time more experienced Yang will be expected to start.

Meanwhile, Uzbekistan winger Giyosov is unlikely to feature after he failed to make the squad since May.

Daegu FC

With usual absentee centre-back Hong Jungwoon on injury list, the rest of squad will be ready for a trip to Anyang in midweek, but there will be some extent of squad rotation expected as caretaker Lee Byunggeun hinted at it in the post match interview last time out. To what extent of it will remain uncertain, but I suspect it will be quite heavy with regulars on the bench as the Sky Blues have been hardly rotated for five league games in June.

Daegu FC caretaker Lee Byunggeun will face a dilemma over squad rotation

Montenegrin striker Dejan Damjanović will be expected to start in the place of towering forward Edgar along with Shin Changmoo and Cesinha. In the middle, Kim Dongjin and Jang Sungwon will take places as wing backs with Lee Jinhyun and Ryu Jaemoon. In defence where the squad rotation is unlikely to happen, Kim Jaewoo might replace Jo Jinwoo in a back three. Between the sticks, Gu Sungyun will be given a place for a better assimilation after his first appearance in a Daegu shirt.

The Adversary

2019 K League 2 play-off makers FC Anyang are stumbling this season after bidding farewell to their household names Cho Gyusung, Palacios and Kim Sangwon to Jeonbuk and Pohang respectively last season. It was icing on the cake that they lost young promising attacker Lee Jeongbin in the middle of this season as the attacker temporarily left the club for the military duties. As a result, the Violets manager Kim Hyungyeol nearly restarted to build up the team from the scratch with new signings. On the bright side, it seems that they are hitting the ground running.

Former ACF Fiorentina forward Maxwell Acosty has been the most influential figure in FC Anyang

In a 3-4-3 formation, two midfielders Nilson Junior and Young Korean talent Maeng Seongwoong are the energetic engine, transiting and screening their back three led by former Daegu FC defender and current Anyang captain Choi Hojung, while ACF Fiorentina youth product Maxwell Acosty leads their attack along with Koo Bonhyuk. The Ghana born attacker bagged four goals from eight league appearances. The striker position, still up for grabs between loanee Kim Kyungmin and Brazilian forward Maurides, might go to the Brazilian after he showed an impressive performance last time out.

FC Anyang entered the competition in Round 2 where they edged past K4 League side Goyang Citizen FC 2-0 at home thanks to a goal from Koo Bonhyuk and Nilson Junior each. Despite the visitors being two tiers below, manager Kim Hyungyeol didn't rotate his squad much and tried to take the opportunity to build up the team in the long term.

What To Watch

Can FC Anyang pull off upset against the K League 1 club?

In the 2019 FA Cup, the Violets stunned then six times K League Champions Jeonbuk Hyundai 1-0 on the road thanks to the winner from Palacios. Afterwards, Anyang disappointingly bowed out in Round 5 by becoming a victim of giant killing after losing to then National league side Changwon City FC (current K3 side).

Can they do it again? On paper, FC Anyang have quite a slim chance as they have gone four games without a victory in the league with a loose defence, while in-form Daegu FC look like the favourites to march on to the next round. However, ahead of this match, the Sky Blues will be massively tempted for squad rotation against the stumbling Violets.

It's perhaps noteworthy that Daegu FC usually struggle in the FA Cup except only one occasion in 2018 when they lifted the trophy. For example, last season Daegu FC played a half-rotated side against K League 2 side Suwon FC and they narrowly managed to beat them 2-1 with a bit of fortune after the ricocheted effort proved to be the winner in stoppage time.

If Daegu played a rotated side without foreign players, the gap between Anyang's first team and Daegu's side wouldn't be noticeably significant. Therefore, the chances for Anyang would be bigger than it actually looks in the gap in the table.

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Despite the gap between K League 2 bottom side FC Anyang and high-flying K League 1 side Daegu FC, it is not going to be as easy game for Daegu as it may look like. I expect this tie to be very closely contested with a small chance of an upset. However, Daegu FC will eventually beat Anyang by a narrow margin.

FC Anyang 0-1 Daegu FC

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