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Korean Football Round-up 28th Oct.


A K League legend retires, more of the Son and Kane show, and K League drama aplenty. Paul Neat with Korean Football Round-up.

#KLUPod: The Weekend Preview 31st Oct.




COVID-19 in K League


According to a report by Yonhap News, on Tuesday a first K League player has been found to have tested positive for COVID-19. Daejeon City Government confirmed that a man in his 20s has the coronavirus and is a first team player of the city's K League 2 team Daejeon Hana Citizen. Quarantine authorities will select players, coaches, executives and employees from the club to receive coronavirus tests.


The Circle of Life: Lee Dong-gook announces retirement


Legendary K League striker Lee Dong-gook has announced that he is to retire at the end of the season. Lee is due to make his final K League appearance in the Round 27 clash against Daegu on Sunday after a glittering career. Speaking via Jeonbuk's official website, the striker known as 'Lion King' said that he sees his retirement as a new beginning and not an ending. In a career that has spanned over 22 years, Lee is K League's all-time leading goal scorer with 228 and has seven K League winner's medals to his name and one ACL title.


Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors find another gear


A 1-0 win over title rivals Ulsan Hyundai moves Jeonbuk to the top of K League 1 for the first time since Round 10 back in July. Jeonbuk and Ulsan headed into Sunday's clash level on points with two games left of the season. A win for Ulsan, with their superior goals scored tally, would have all-but sealed a first title in 15 years. However, an error from former Green Warrior Kim Kee-hee allowed Mo Barrow to nip in and score the winner just after the hour mark. To clinch a record fourth consecutive title, and fifth in six years, Jeonbuk need just a point at home to Daegu FC on Sunday. 

Ki-iller instinct

Nam Ki-il's Jeju United all-but sealed an instant return to K League 1 over the weekend, beating second-place Suwon FC by two-goals-to-nil on the island. Heading into the match, the Tangerines were three points clear but goals from Lee Dong-rul and Jin Seong-wook gave Jeju a 2-0 win to earn a six-point lead at the top of K League 2. Jeju face Seoul E-Land this Sunday, a point would be enough to clinch automatic promotion.

The Greatest of Great Escapes

Defeat against Busan IPark on Saturday would have been enough to condemn Incheon United to relegation for the first time in their history. However, despite trailing to Busan IPark with 15 minutes left, the Blue Black scored two in quick succession to turn the game on its head. Kim Dae-jung and Jung Dong-yun on the scoresheet helped earn Jo Sung-hwan's side their fair share of the spoils. A win against FC Seoul on Saturday in the Gyeongin Derby would be enough to secure survival for Incheon.


Every Son, flick and Harry


Son Heung-min simply cannot stop scoring and seemingly with Harry Kane exclusively teeing him up. The South Korean national team captain bagged Tottenham's winner in the 1-0 away victory over Burnley on Monday night to go fifth in the table. Son nodded home from close range, latching onto a flick on from Harry Kane. The two combined for the 29th time in the Premier League and are second in that regard only to Frank Lampard and Didier Drogba with 36. Son is now the Premier League's leading goal scorer with eight for the season thus far.


Eulji Lewis


Bell ends upset 


Colin Bell's South Korean women's national team ended any chance of an upset against the U20s side on Monday by running out 2-0 winners, 3-0 on aggregate. With a narrow 1-0 lead, the stage was set for a comeback from the Olympic side. However, the second leg of the Team Bell versus Team Jung-jae ended in a 2-0 win for senior team with goals from Choi Yu-ri and Chu Hyo-joo.


Mestalla Messiah


Korean international midfielder Lee Kang-in picked up a league-leading third assist of the season over the weekend, setting up Toni Lato as Valencia pulled one back in the 2-1 defeat to Elche in La Liga. Valencia have lost three on the bounce and are struggling under the stewardship of manager Javi Gracia. That said, Lee Kang-in has featured in six of Valencia's seven matches so far this term, starting three of them. The 19-year-old has also set up 14 shot-creating chances this season, already bettering his total from 2019/2020 season of 13.

 


Gimhae some lovin'


Gimhae City sealed first place in K3 following a 1-0 win over Gangneung City on Saturday. Former Suwon Samsung Bluewings midfielder Kim Eun-sun grabbed the game's only goal three minutes from time to secure a place in the Championship Playoff. With no promotion or relegation to and from K League 2 yet, the team which finishes top in K3 qualifies for the Championship Final - similar to the KBO Korean Series in baseball. Gimhae have a whole host of former K League players amongst their ranks, most notably centre back Ahn Jae-jun, formerly of Seongnam and Daejeon and former FC Seoul striker Park Hee-seong.

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