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Preview: Daejeon Hana Citizen vs Suwon FC

Preview: Daejeon Hana Citizen vs Suwon FC K League 2 Round 12
The top two in K League 2 clash at Purple Arena on Sunday when Daejeon Hana Citizen host Suwon FC league leaders. The high-anticipated match which could help determine which team goes on to seal that much-coveted single automatic promotion spot. Both Daejeon and Suwon bowed out of the cup in midweek and so will be fully focused on their respective promotion pushes.

Overview

via Soccerway

Last Time Out

FA Cup: Daejeon Hana Citizen 1-1 FC Seoul (2-4 on pens.)

Daejeon suffered FA Cup heartbreak in midweek by losing to K League 1 side FC Seoul on penalties following a 1-1 draw. Brazilian striker Bruno Baio put the hosts in front with an expertly taken free kick just five minutes. Both sides had chances to score but neither were able to convert. An excellent goalkeeping performance by Kim Keun-bae, as well as some brave and resolute defensive displays from Lee Ji-sol and Lee Jung-moon kept Seoul at bay.

That was until Lee Ji-sol fouled Park Chu-young in the box and the referee awarded Seoul a penalty. Park blazed the spot-kick over the bar but soon atoned for his mistake with a glancing header from a deep Ko Kwang-min cross from the left in the second half. After 120 minutes the score remained level and so the game was decided via a penalty shootout with Seoul emerging victorious, converting four penalties to two.

FA Cup: Suwon FC 0-1 Busan IPark

Suwon also crashed out of the cup in midweek after a narrow loss to K League 1 side Busan IPark. Experienced midfielder Park Jong-woo scored the game's only goal on 75 minutes to extend Busan's unbeaten run in all competitions to seven and four straight wins. Suwon, meanwhile, ended their unbeaten run of five with the defeat to the south coast side.

Previous Meetings

These two sides met on the opening weekend of the season at Castle Park where Daejeon secured a late, late win on account of a Park Yong-ji's stoppage time winner. An Byong-jun had given Suwon the lead with a long range deflected free kick which caught goalkeeper Kim Dong-jun off guard. However, some intricate link-up play between Park In-hyeok and Andre played the latter in on goal to find the back of the net on his K League debut on 35 minutes. In the closing moments of the second half, Jeong Hee-woong played in Lee Seul-chan who sent a low cross towards the penalty spot where Park Yong-ji was waiting. The former Sangju man swept the ball home but had to wait for VAR confirmation before he was allowed to celebrate.

Last season, Daejeon lost three times to Suwon and picked up a draw last September. Overall, from 18 meetings, Suwon hve eight wins, as do Daejeon with two draws. In Suwon, there have been nine meetings, five of which were won by the hosts with Daejeon picking up just two away wins.

Team News

Daejeon will be without centre back Lee Woong-hee who has an ankle injury, as well as Lee Kyu-ro due to a shoulder problem. Goalkeepers Kim Dong-jun and Park Ju-won remain long term doubts and so Kim Keun-bae will keep his place between the sticks with Connor Chapman expected to start. Winger Yoon Seung-won, who scored Daejeon's first in a 2-0 win over Ansan last weekend is a doubt, however. The former FC Seoul forward left the field with ice strapped to his knee and was forced to sit out the FA Cup 4th Round tie against his former employers. Forward Park In-hyeok has seven matches left of his 10-game ban. Left back Seo Young-jae, who has recently joined from Holstein Kiel, could be inline to make his Daejeon debut.

Daejeon starting lineup vs FC Seoul, FA Cup Round 4.
For Suwon, Lars Veldwijk could be in line to make his debut having joined from Jeonbuk on Friday. The South African international departs Jeonju after starting just two matches. Kim Do-kyun has no suspensions of which to concern himself with and so should have a relatively full squad to choose from. The fledgling manager made a number of changes for the visit of Busan in the cup on Wednesday and so is likely to recall the likes of goalkeeper Yoo Hyun, first choice centre back pairing Lee Han-saem and Cho Yu-min who were among a handful of players rested.

Suwon FC starting lineup vs Chungnam Asan, K League 2 Round 10.



The Adversary

Despite suffering defeat to Daejeon on the opening day of the season, Suwon FC top the table and boast of the league's most potent attack. Suwon have scored 17 times in seven matches and have An Byong-jun leading the goal-scoring charts with nine. Given how many goals Suwon have scored, it will be of little surprise to discover that Kim Do-kyun's side have registered the most shots in K League 2 this season with 150, the most per 90 with 14, but their Achilles heel is their accuracy which is the fifth-best in the division.

Suwon tend to be set up in a 4-2-3-1 or 4-4-2 and have relied heavily on experienced goalkeeper Yoo Hyun and centre back pairing Cho Yu-min and Lee Han-saem. Pivotal to Suwon is on-loan Ulsan midfielder Kim Geon-ung as the anchor whilst Japan-born North Korean forward An Byong-jun leads the attack.

Eulji Lewis  

What To Watch

Andre vs An Byong-jun


Andre has eight goals for the season, An has nine. It looks as though these two, who both scored the last time these two times met, will be battling it out for either the MVP award or the K League 2 golden boot. An Byong-jun has an xG of 5 compared to nine goals scored, whilst Andre has an xG of 4.65 with eight goals. For expected goals and assists, An is at 6.66 with 11 (nine goals, two assists), while Andre Luis is at 5.49 with nine (eight goals and one assist). Both will be expected to impose themselves on the game come Sunday.

Prediction

This top of the table clash could have a huge say in where the K League 2 title is heading come the end of the campaign. Daejeon are desperate to reclaim top spot and, at home, and after a spirited performance against FC Seoul in the cup, will fancy themselves. The Purples have beaten Suwon already this season and, if Hwang Sun-hong sticks to a similar set up as to that of the Seoul cup tie - a back four - then Daejeon should edge this one.



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