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2023 Hana 1Q K League 1 Round 2 Preview

league 2023.03.02   I   hits 1534

The 2023 Hana 1Q K League 1 season reaches Round 2 this weekend with three matches on Saturday and three on Sunday. Incheon United versus Daejeon Hana Citizen and Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors versus Suwon Samsung Bluewings are the two matches picked for overseas broadcasting but there's plenty more to keep tabs on throughout the weekend.

Alternative Match of the Round

Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors vs Suwon Samsung Bluewings (Sunday 5th March, 14:00)

Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors versus Suwon Samsung Bluewings is a fixture that more often than not produced goals, drama, and heated contests. Both teams lost on opening day and so will be determined to pick up their first wins of the season this Sunday afternoon. From the last 10 meetings, there have been, on average, three goals in this fixture. The most recent encounter was particularly eventful with five goals and two red cards - Suwon's Elvis Sarić and Dave Bulthuis both being given second yellow cards.

Suwon, though, will be looking for a first win over Jeonbuk since May 2021, a 3-1 victory in Jeonju thanks to goals from Ko Seung-beom, Jeong Sang-bin, and Lee Ki-je. From 91 previous K League meetings, Jeonbuk have 37 wins to Suwon's 31 and 23 draws with 147 goals to 117. In terms of who to watch, Maxwell Acosty's two key passes for the Bluewings against Gwangju were the joint most. The former FC Anyang forward came off the bench in the first half on Saturday with U22 player Kim Ju-chan, an 18-year-old attacker. For Jeonbuk, Song Min-kyu began 2023 in much the same way he began 2022, with a goal on opening day. The Korean international registered two shots against Ulsan last weekend and both were on target. 

Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors versus Suwon Samsung Bluewings kicks off at 14:00 KST on Sunday, 5th March 2023. 

Fans overseas can watch the game live, in HD, and for free on TV.KLeague.com [CLICK]

Team of the Round

Daejeon Hana Citizen (vs. Incheon United, Sat. 4th March 14:00)

A goal from one of the team's debutants, another helped keep a cleansheet, and a first win in K League 1 since October 2015, it was the perfect start to life back in the top tier for Daejeon Hana Citizen last Sunday. Lee Min-sung's men beat Gangwon FC 2-0 with goals from Tiago Orobo and Leandro in front of a bumper crowd of over 18,000. Up next for Daejeon is the visit to Sungui Arena Park to take on an Incheon United side that'll be looking to bounce back from the Gyeongin Derby defeat to FC Seoul last Saturday. 

Daejeon haven't faced Incheon since June 2016 in the FA Cup, losing 3-2 in extra time, and since 2015 in the league. The Purples lost all four meetings between the two teams last year, conceding two goals in each of the four encounters. Daejeon's last win over Incheon goes back to March 31st, 2013 when goals from Lee Woong-hee and João Paulo earned a 2-1 victory. But this is a very different Daejeon and after the confidence-boosting win over Gangwon, the Purples will be aiming for six points from six available.

Player of the Round

Hwang Ui-jo, FC Seoul (vs. Gwangju FC, Sun 5th March 16:30)

Hwang Ui-jo made his K League return last Saturday, starting FC Seoul's 2-1 win over Incheon United. The Korean international striker wasn't able to get himself on the scoresheet, but he did come ever so close - twice forcing Kim Dong-heon into making crucial saves. Hwang's other attempt on goal also came close, flashing just wide of the post. He also completed 60% of his dribbles and had three touches in the penalty area. Up next for Hwang Ui-jo and FC Seoul is the trip southwest to Gwangju FC, a side that picked up a 1-0 win away to Suwon Bluewings on the opening day. Seoul's last visit to Gwangju ended in a 4-3 thriller and with the capital club coming back from 3-9 down.

Elsewhere in K League 1 Round 2

Meanwhile, Daegu FC will be looking to bounce back from their late defeat to Pohang Steelers on opening day when they host Jeju United on Saturday - another side looking to get off the mark in 2023. Jeju drew 0-0 at home to Suwon FC but kept goalkeeper Lee Bum-young busy for much of the afternoon with 12 shots on target - the second most from opening day.

Suwon FC, then, will be looking to find their first goals of the season when they take on Pohang Steelers this Saturday. Kim Di-kyun's men despatched the joint-fewest shots on opening day this year with just eight. For Pohang, goals didn't appear to be an issue against Daegu having been the only team to score three on opening day this year but manager Kim Gi-dong will want his players to be a bit tighter defensively.

Ulsan Hyundai will be hoping that their return to Chuncheon Songam Stadium, where they sealed the title last year, will bring them more good luck. Ulsan beat Jeonbuk on opening day and will be hoping to double their points tally against a Gangwon FC side that lost 2-0 to Daejeon Hana Citizen last Sunday. Ulsan will be looking to get into the opposition box more after having just 11 touches in Jeonbuk's penalty area on Saturday, the joint-second fewest. Gangwon, meanwhile, ranked third for passed to the final third.

K League 1 Round 2 Fixtures

Saturday 4th March

#INCvDHFC: Incheon United vs Daejeon Hana Citizen - 14:00
#SUWvPOH: Suwon FC vs Pohang Steelers - 14:00
#DAEvJEJ: Daegu FC vs Jeju United - 16:30 

Sunday 5th March

#JEOvSSB: Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors vs Suwon Samsung Bluewings - 14:00
#GANvULS: Gangwon FC vs Ulsan Hyundai - 14:00
#GWAvSEO: Gwangju FC vs FC Seoul - 16:30

Where to Watch

Follow all the weekend's action live, for FREE, and in HD on TV.KLeague.com.