This weekend brings us the second installment of ‘The Supermatch’ this season, although in fairness it may have been a little while since the match lived up to that billing.
FC Seoul v Suwon (5pm)
All the talk this week from the Seoul camp has been of revenge for that horrendous 5-1 thrashing at The Big Bird earlier this season. It’s a match which is still fresh in the memory of the Seoul fans, well those who were sober enough to remember it that is. That day Seoul were completely outplayed by a Suwon team who were brimming with confidence, so what has changed this time round you ask?
Well just up until 2 rounds ago Seoul were the form team in the K-league, they had gone on a run of games that had seen them rack up five victories in six and in fact until last weekend’s rather meek defeat at Jeonnam they hadn’t lost in the league since that defeat in Suwon. Not exactly going to win any accolades for the manner in which they amassed their points they were still getting the results and were climbing up the table ever closer to their stuttering rivals above them. During this run of form they even managed to trounce Jeonbuk in their own manor, and running out deserved 2-1 victors, coming back from 1-0 down with ten minutes left at Daejeon showed maybe just maybe that they had some backbone and fight about them too. Of course as I mentioned above they went to Jeonnam last week and lost 2-0 and it is this result that is having people smirking about Choi’s revenge comments. It’s one thing to drag out draws against Busan but it another thing to match the free-flowing football of a Cheong Tae Se inspired Suwon and that result in Jeonnam has thrown some doubt back in the minds of the Suhoshin that they can.
Suwon on the other hand have had mixed fortunes since the first ‘Supermatch’. They, just like FC Seoul, crashed out of the Asian Champions League but they did at least put up a fight against Kashiwa Reysol unlike Seoul who rolled over to have their bellies tickled by Gamba Osaka. They also watched in horror as Jeonnam put paid to any hopes they had of winning the FA Cup by defeating them on penalties to send them crashing out of that cup too. Their league form has been a little erratic to say the least and they actually lost their next two matches after beating Seoul, a quite unexpected defeat at home to Daejeon followed by a title-wrecking defeat at Jeonbuk. They have picked themselves up a little of late and are undefeated in three although they have been made to work for two draws during that time and could so easily have lost both. It is this inability to kill games off recently that leaves Seoul fans with a glimmer of hope approaching the match. Suwon are still in second place but you would have to think that there’s is more chance of a joint AOA and Girls Day calendar shoot than them winning the league.
The match originally got it’s moniker of ‘The Supermatch’ due to the crowd numbers that would attend the fixture and the atmosphere they created, over the years as with the K-League in general these numbers have slowly decreased and Seoul resorted to marketing the final one last season as their designated ‘foreigner day’. With the added ‘scare’ that is MERS we could see another decrease in attendance today, although the rumour that K-pop ‘legends’ EXID are to be appearing may just level things out. Nothing like the prospect of some females miming to a song whilst wearing your team’s colors to dispel any fears of catching a deadly virus.
Also this weekend we have the Jeolla “derby” and some tasty looking matches at Pohang as they take on Gwangju and Ulsan v Seongnam. All in all on paper a great weekend of K-League Classic lies ahead so I guess we should expect five goalless draws and a Suwon victory.