Seoul defeated to Jeonbuk0-4despite strong first half performance
On Round 14 of the K League 1, which was the last season match before the FIFA World Cup in Russia, FC Seoul suffered several tough lucks and allowed a 0-4 defeat to Jeonbuk Hyundai F.C. While the play was promising enough during the first half, Seoul lost steam after a rather dubious VAR refereeing and the sidelining of Sin Jin Ho in the latter half of the game.
For the Sunday match, Seoul hired Yang Han Been as their goalkeeper per usual. Sim Sang Min, Hwang Hyun Soo, Kwak Tae Hwi, and Go Yo-han formed a four-back line, with Hwang Ki Wook protecting the line of defense in the center, and Sin Jin Ho and Lee Sang Ho were poised to add fire to the offensive in the midfield. Cho Young Wook and Anderson were each placed in the left and right side as shadow strikers, with Park Chu Young standing on the top of the triangle. Go Yo Han, a member of the national team, played the role of a right defender, and Cho Young Wook filled the gap to go head-to-head with Jeonbuk’s goalkeeper Song Bum Geun, with whom the youngest striker of Seoul lifted the U League championship trophy together last year as two fellow Korea University students.
First Half: Cho and Anderson dominate the sides from left and right
As early as in the firth minute, Park Chu Young had a promising chance to find the net first. Cho Young Wook delivered a tricky pass into the back of the defense, and Park had a go on a one-on-one chance with the goalkeeper, but the ball hit the goalpost.
In the 12th minute, Park Chu Young tried to open the scoring in a free kick before the arc, but his shot hit a wall of defenders and flew off track. Sin Jin Ho took care of the following corner kick, and Kwak Tae Hwi boasted a strong header, recording a shot on target. Seoul’s attacks mainly took place in the right side of the pitch, running from Go Yo Han to Anderson.
In the 23rd minute, Hwang Hyun Soo made a superb save with a pinpoint tackle to cut off a counterattack from the opposing side. In the 26th minute, Anderson exploited a lapse to find a chance but fell short of firing a shot. Shortly, Cho Young Wook took the ball with strong pressure and whipped in a cross from the left side, which found its way towards the foot of Anderson, but missed the strike point. Cho Young Wook continued to impress the spectators. The rookie striker boasted great tenacity to chase down a long pass from Lee Sang Ho and strike a shot.
Cho and Anderson showed great performance in the left and right sides, creating more chances than the opponents, but the first half was closed without any scoring.
Second Half: Dubious VAR refereeing hampers the flow of the game
In the 11th minute, a cross was delivered from the right side, which was kept by Park Hee Sung, who passed it to Anderson, but the Brazilian’s attempt was simply not powerful enough. In the 13th minute, Park Hee Sung peeled off three defenders with an explosive dribbling, and exchanged passes with Park Chu Young. While the play was blocked by the defense, but Park showed off remarkable plays upon substitution in the latter half. In the 15th minute, Cho Young Wook was replaced with Evandro.
Regrettably, Seoul allowed an opener to Jeonbuk upon the substitution of Evandro, where Lee Jae Sung found the net after collecting a pass from Lee Dong Guk. It was unclear whether it was on or offside, but a VAR monitoring ruled it to be a valid point afterwards.
Seoul began to spur an effort to equalize the game, focusing more resources on the offensives with a 4-2-4 formation. In the 20th minute, Anderson lobbed a cross from the right side, and Park Chu Young sent a strong, low shot rolling towards the goalkeeper, which failed to cross the goal line.
In the 27th minute, Sin Jin Ho was sidelined after making a rough challenge, which left Seoul outnumbered by one. In the 31st minute, Seoul substituted Kim Han Gil for Anderson in a bid to bolster the defense, but in the 37th minute, the team allowed an unlucky own goal from Kwak Tae Hwi before allowing more goals from Lim Sun Young and Lee Dong Guk, in the 40th and 43rd minutes of the latter half, respectively. While they did their best to find a goal, the tide was too strong for Seoul to turn around in their favor. However, the brilliance that Seoul showed off during the first half of the game offered a glimpse into the possibility of their joining the leading group of the league over the latter half of the season.