Jeonbuk Hyundai, which was categorized as a “second-tier” team along with Ulsan Hyundai before the start of the professional soccer K League 1 season, rebounded with a 2-0 victory over Ulsan on March 3 and followed it up with its first back-to-back wins of the season by beating Daegu FC.
On Sunday, Jeonbuk defeated Daegu FC 1-0 at home in the 17th round of the Hana One Q K League 2023 at Jeonju World Cup Stadium, thanks to a goal from Song Min-gyu, to move up one spot to seventh place.
Meanwhile, Daegu, who were unbeaten in their last five matches (three wins and two draws), saw their momentum stalled and dropped from fifth to eighth.
Jeonbuk took the lead in the 26th minute when Hafa Silva struck a right-footed shot from near the front of the penalty area off a loose ball in the box, only to see it deflect off Daegu’s right post.
Jeonbuk came close three minutes later 안전놀이터 when Jung Woo-jae’s pass down the right flank was met by Song Min-kyu, who fired a non-stop right-footed shot from the front of the penalty area, but it sailed over the crossbar to end the half.
Jeonbuk finally broke through in the second half, and it was Song Min-gyu who did it.
In the 20th minute, Song picked up a deflected ball on the left side of the penalty area and used a powerful right-footed curling shot to put the ball into the right corner of the Daegu goal to seal the win.
It was the second consecutive game that Song recorded an offensive point for Min-gyu, who had previously registered an assist in the 16th round.
Gwangju FC’s Thomas scores a powerful right-footed goal in the 45th minute to turn the game into a theater.
Gwangju FC celebrated its first three-game winning streak of the season with an upset victory over last-place Suwon Samsung, led by a multi-goal performance from Thomas.
Gwangju came from behind to win 2-1 at home against Suwon at Gwangju Stadium on Sunday, led by a one-man show from Thomas, who scored two goals on his own.
With the win, Gwangju (24-23 points) moved up one spot from seventh to sixth place as they continued the momentum of their first three-game winning streak of the season.
Gwangju has the same number of points as seventh-place Jeonbuk Hyundai (24-20 points) and eighth-place Daegu FC (24-19 points), but sits higher on goal difference.
Last-place Suwon, on the other hand, failed to capitalize on an early goal and slipped into a four-game losing streak.
Gwangju wasted a great scoring opportunity in the 15th minute when Asani’s shot from the right side of the penalty area went just wide of the left post.
In the 36th minute, Asani’s left-footed free kick from the left side of the penalty area failed to clear the defense.
After struggling to capitalize on their chances, Suwon took the lead in the 40th minute through Ahn Byung-joon’s “one-shot, one-kill” goal.
The ball was played in from the back by Lee Sang-min near the penalty spot, and Ahn Byung-joon was on hand to slide the ball into the right corner of the Gwangju goal with a precise left-footed shot from the left side of the penalty area. It was Suwon’s first shot on goal against Gwangju on the day.
After conceding first in the first half, Gwangju rallied for two goals in the second half, both of which came from Thomas.
After coming on from the bench in the eighth minute of the second half, Thomas scored his K League 1 debut in the 23rd minute with a right-footed shot from the right side of the penalty arc following a ball in from the left flank by Doo Hyun-seok.
In the 45th minute of the second half, when the score was tied, Gwangju scored a “theater upset,” and Thomas was the hero.
Thomas rattled the Suwon goal net with a powerful right-footed shot from the right side of the goal area in the midst of a scramble to seal the win.
■ Incheon ties Seoul 1-1 on the second anniversary of the late Yoo Sang-chul…Hwang Ui-jo equalizes
At the Incheon Sports Complex, Incheon United drew 1-1 with FC Seoul, unable to overcome an early goal from Hwang Eui-jo in a home match that marked the second anniversary of the late coach Yoo Sang-chul’s death.
The result extended Incheon’s unbeaten streak to five matches (1 win, 4 draws), but they fell short of recording their first back-to-back wins of the season.
However, Incheon (19 points) reclaimed ninth place, dropping Suwon FC (18 points) to 10th.
Seoul (28-30 pts), who share a point with Incheon, moved up to third place on goal difference ahead of Jeju United (28-26 pts).
The game against Seoul was Incheon’s first K League 1 match on the day that honorary coach Yoo Sang-cheol passed away.
Last year, the first anniversary of Yoo’s passing two years ago after battling pancreatic cancer, Incheon did not play a K League 1 match due to the A-Match period overlapping.
It was Incheon who took the early lead.
In the 19th minute, Kim Bo-seob sent in a cross from the left flank, and after a battle with Lee Tae-seok, Gerso rattled the net first with a left-footed kick.
Lee Tae-seok, who suffered a head injury in the process and fell to the ground, continued to play through bandages, and seven minutes into the second half, Ki Sung-yong and Hwang Eui-jo combined to equalize.
Driving the ball forward in the opponent’s half, Ki Sung-yueng deceived the defense with an exquisite heel pass to create space for Hwang Ui-jo to shoot from behind the penalty area.
Hwang then curled a right-footed shot that deflected off a defender and into the bottom corner of the net.
It was the third goal of the season for Hwang Ui-jo, who is out of contract after a six-month loan spell with Seoul, and his first in eight games since joining Suwon in April.
■ Daejeon wins for the first time in five games as Joo Se-jong scores first goal…beating Gangwon
At Chuncheon Songam Sports Town, Daejeon Hana Citizen (P25) earned a 2-1 victory over Gangwon FC (P12) to move into fifth place after going winless in their last four matches (one draw and three losses).
Gangwon, on the other hand, could not escape the ’11th place trap’ as they continued their winless streak (2 draws and 5 losses) in their last seven matches.
After taking the lead in the 26th minute through Thiago, Daejeon conceded an equalizer to Gangwon’s Park Sang-hyuk, who took advantage of a defensive error three minutes into the second half, but Joo Se-jong headed in his season’s best goal 14 minutes into the second half to seal the one-goal victory.