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2023 Hana 1Q K League 1 Round 5 Preview

league 2023.03.30   I   hits 750

K League returns this weekend following the international break. In Round 5 of the 2023 Hana 1Q K League 1 season, two of the teams yet to win this season meet when Suwon Samsung Bluewings host Gangwon FC, Daegu FC head to Incheon in search of a second win on the spin, and Lee Jin-hyun of Daejeon Hana Citizen is looking for yet another goal contribution following his hot start to the new campaign.

Alternative Match of the Round

Suwon Samsung Bluewings vs Gangwon FC, Sun. 2nd April - 16:30

Two of the three K League 1 teams yet to win this season meet at Big Bird on Sunday when Suwon Samsung Bluewings host Gangwon FC. Suwon lost to Daejeon last time out while Gangwon drew 1-1 with Pohang after a late Lee Ho-jae equaliser. Suwon boss Lee Byung-keun and his opposite number Choi Yong-soo will both see the fixture as must-win and see each other's teams as the perfect opponent to pick up their first win of the campaign.

Suwon's slow start to the new season isn't for the want of trying, though, with the Bluewings second in the division for shots at 61 and third for shots on target with 21. Winter recruit Maxwell Acosty, too, has enjoyed a good start to the new campaign with two goals and the most key passes in the division with 11.

Gangwon, meanwhile, will be looking to improve their shooting accuracy levels having registered just three shots on target so far this term, seven fewer than the nearest team Suwon FC. While goals aren't going in for Gangwon they are at least doing well in terms of keeping them out with the third-most blocks at 89, third-most tackles, and fourth-most interceptions. 

Overall, there have been 32 previous meetings between Suwon Bluewings and Gangwon FC with Bluewings earning 17 wins to Gangwon's seven and eight draws. The last meeting of 2022 ended as a 3-2 Gangwon win thanks to goals from Kim Jin-ho, Rim Chang-woo, and Galego.

Team of the Round

Daegu FC (vs. Incheon United, Sat. 1st April - 16:30)

A 2-0 victory at home to Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors last time out got Daegu FC up and running for the season. It was also the Sky Blues' first cleansheet of the campaign and first win over Jeonbuk in two years. With just one loss so far this term, the glass is very much half-full for manager Choi Won-kwon and the DGB Daegu Bank Park faithful. Daegu are fourth in K League 1 so far for shots dispatched with 49 and fourth for shots on target with 20. A total of 20 have come from outside the box while Cesinha sits second for total shots with 13, joint second for shots on target with five, and first for shots from outside the area with nine. Up next for Daegu FC is Incheon United away, a side that's looking to bounce back from a 5-0 loss to Gwangju before the international break.

Player of the Round

Lee Jin-hyun, Daejeon Hana Citizen (vs. FC Seoul, Sat. 1st April - 19:00)

Midfielder Lee Jin-hyun has been a key player for Daejeon Hana Citizen this season. In four matches, Lee has four goal contributions with three assists and one goal. In fact, the former Pohang and Daegu man has had some say in every game Daejeon have scored in this season. Lee's three assists are the most in the division while a further five key passes are the joint-seventh most. Daejeon, still unbeaten with two wins and two draws, host FC Seoul this Saturday night, a side that sits one place and one point above the Purples in the table. Daejeon are looking for their first win over FC Seoul since 2004.

Elsewhere in K League 1 Round 5

Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors versus Pohang Steelers is one of the matches that's been picked for overseas broadcasting and English commentary. Jeonbuk will be looking to bounce back from last week's defeat to Daegu and record their second win over the campaign. Pohang, meanwhile, remain unbeaten thanks to Lee Ho-jae's late leveller at home to Gangwon last time out. 

Gwangju FC, meanwhile, will be looking to pick up where they left off when taking on Suwon FC. The Griffins put five past Incheon United before the international break with Jasir Asani scoring a hat-trick, the win ended a run of two straight defeats for Lee Jung-hyo's men. Suwon FC, have managed four points from 12 available and are yet to win on the road this term.

Jeju United versus Ulsan Hyundai is a match-up between a team that's yet to win in Jeju or one that's yet to drop any points at all in reigning champions Ulsan. The match is expected to be Joo Min-kyu's first trip back to Seogwipo since the striker left Jeju and re-joined the Horangi. Jeju, meanwhile, will be hoping to put the late defeat to FC Seoul behind them and get their season up and running while Ulsan are aiming to make it five wins from their first five matches for the first time in the club's history.

K League 1 Table

K League 1 Round 5 Fixtures

Saturday 1st April

#JEOvPOH: Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors (8th) vs Pohang Steelers (4th) - 14:00 
#GWAvSUW: Gwangju FC (5th) vs Suwon FC (9th) - 16:30 
#INCvDAE: Incheon United (7th) vs Daegu FC (6th) - 16:30 
#DHFCvSEO: Daejeon Hana Citizen (3rd) vs FC Seoul (2nd) - 19:00 

Sunday 2nd April

#JEJvULS: Jeju United (10th) vs Ulsan Hyundai (1st) - 14:00 
#SSBvGAN: Suwon Samsung Bluewings (12th) vs Gangwon FC (11th) - 16:30 

Where to Watch

The matches picked for overseas broadcasting and English commentary are Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors versus Pohang Steelers on Saturday and Jeju United versus Ulsan Hyundai on Sunday. Check local listings for further details.

However, all matches can be watched LIVE, for FREE, and in HD on TV.KLeague.com.