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2024 Hana Bank K League 2 Round 4 Preview

league 2024.03.28   I   hits 139

2024 Hana Bank K League 2 Round 4 Preview

Match of the Round

Suwon Samsung Bluewings vs. Busan IPark, Sun. 31st March - 16:30 

Two giants of Korean football and two of the division's tips for promotion meet this Sunday when Suwon Samsung Bluewings host Busan IPark. Suwon and Busan have around 30 major trophies between them, including eight K League 1 titles, six FA Cups, and several continental titles. While their pedigree cannot be disputed, the two teams have experienced contrasting starts to the new campaign. Suwon are third with two wins and one loss while Busan are 10th with one win and two losses. 

Both teams earned Korea Cup wins last weekend with Suwon beating Chuncheon Citizen 2-1 and Busan IPark easing through on penalties against Ulsan Citizen. But in the league, Busan suffered defeat and so will be looking to bounce back, while the Bluewings will be looking to build on their 1-0 away win over Ansan Greeners. 

Busan IPark lead the league for total shots with 50, Suwon meanwhile sit sixth in that regard. Busan are the most accurate shooters, too, with 50% finding the target while Suwon slip to ninth with 36.1% accuracy. Both teams, though, tend to shoot from outside the area; Busan are second with 24 shots, while Suwon are fourth with 19. Despatching the highest number of shots means that Busan have the highest xG in the league at 6.05 with four goals scored, whereas Suwon have an xG of 3.20 with four goals scored. Busan have the fourth-highest expected goals against (xGA) value at 3.98 with five conceded whereas the Bluewings have the fourth-lowest at 2.47 and three goals conceded. 

Sunday's clash will be the first between these two teams since October 2020. It could also see An Byong-jun return to Big Bird for the first team following his move from Suwon to Busan over the winter. The last meeting at Suwon World Cup Stadium goes back to August 2020, a 3-1 win for Suwon thanks to a brace from Kim Min-woo and a goal from now-Bluewings boss Yeom Ki-hun. The two giants have locked horns on 82 occasions with the Bluewings winning 42, Busan 17, and 23 draws. 

Team of the Round

Chungnam Asan (vs. Chungbuk Cheongju, Sat. 30th March - 14:00)

Chungnam Asan have begun the season rather well with one win, one loss, and one draw. The win came just before the international break, a 2-1 away victory over perennial playoff contender Gyeongnam FC thanks to goals from Kim Jong-sok and Jung Ma-ho. Asan were knocked out of the Korea Cup by K4 side Jinju Citizen last time out, however, and so will be looking to make amends when they take on early league leaders and unbeaten Chungbuk Cheongju in something of a Chungcheong Province derby. The Owls are fourth for total shots so far this season with 39 but 13th for accuracy at just 23.1%. Most of the team's shots have come from outside the area (22) with Kim Hyun-seok's side third in the division in that regard. Last season, Chungnam Asan won two of the three meetings - 4-0 last April and 1-0 in November.

Player of the Round

Won Ki-jong, Gyeongnam FC (vs. Bucheon FC 1995, Sun. 31st March - 14:00)

Gyeongnam FC forward Won Ki-jong is the division's top scorer with four already for the campaign. The 28-year-old is already one goal better off than he was at this stage last season, a year that proved to be his best in front of goal with 11. But two of his goals so far this term have come in defeats, so the task at hand for Won and Gyeongnam is to turn those goals into wins. So far, the Roses only have the opening weekend win over Ansan Greeners to show for their endeavours. Won sits top of the division for total shots dispatched with 15, and 11th for accuracy at 40%. No K League 1 player has had more touches in the box this season than Won Ki-jong and only five of his total 15 shots have come from outside the area, offering some insight as to how the former Seoul E-Land and Daejeon man will look to add to his goal tally this weekend. Up next for Won Ki-jong and Gyeongnam is the long trip north to take on Bucheon FC 1995. Won has a decent record against Bucheon with three goals and one assist.

K League 2 Table

K League 2 Round 4 Fixtures

Saturday 30th March

#CAFCvCHFC: Chungnam Asan (5th) vs Chungbuk Cheongju (1st) - 14:00 
#SEFCvANY: Seoul E-Land (2nd) vs FC Anyang (6th) - 16:30 
#SFCvGFC: Seongnam FC (13th) vs Gimpo FC (12th) - 16:30 

Sunday 31st March

#BUCvGYE: Bucheon FC 1995 (7th) vs Gyeongnam FC (11th) - 14:00 
#JDFCvCCFC: Jeonnam Dragons (8th) vs Cheonan City (4th) - 14:00 
#SSBvBUS: Suwon Samsung Bluewings (3rd) vs Busan IPark (10th) - 16:30 

Where to Watch

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