Gyeongnam v Ulsan Hyundai – K League 1 Betting Preview and Prediction
Round 20 of K League 1 will provide us with a clash between Gyeongnam and Ulsan Hyundai, who will look for all three points to regain the no.1 spot in the league ahead of Jeonbuk. The match will take place on July 9th at Changwon Football Centre Stadium, the home of Gyeongnam.
Disappointing season for Gyeongnam
Gyeongnam are currently sitting at the 10th place in the league, with a 2-8-9 record and 14 points. It would not be wrong to say Gyeongnam are enduring one of the worst seasons in their history and from what we have seen from them, the Reds will have a hard time salvaging anything by the end of it. Nonetheless, we can give some credit to them, as Gyeongnam managed to grab a point in each of their last 4 matches, which includes the visit to Daegu this weekend, where the teams parted ways with 1 goal each. What we can take from that match is that Gyeongnam are not as bad as their record might suggest. While they are by no means a top 6 team, Gyeongnam have at least proven they can carry their own weight even against teams like Daegu, who failed to penetrate Gyeongnam defense more than once. In fact, Gyeongnam could have won the match if they used their chances better.
Ulsan Hyundai eyeing the title
Ulsan Hyundai hold an impressive 12-4-2 record and 40 points this season, meaning a win against Gyeongnam would get them back at the top of the leaderboard ahead of Jeonbuk. Sitting at the top of the leaderboard with over half a season passed, Ulsan are understandably looking to end the season as a champion, however, they still have a long way to go, with 15 more rounds of K League 1 football separating them from their 3rd league title. Looking back at their performance this weekend, Ulsan managed to defeat Incheon 1:0, which to be fair was not the result Ulsan hoped for. While a win is a win, we have to acknowledge that Incheon is the lowest rated team in the league, so a single goal win is nothing to be proud of. Their performance against Incheon was rather questionable and while they did produce a handful of shots, Ulsan overall disappointed and need to improve ahead of the game against Gyeongnam if they wish to walk away with all 3 points.
History favors the visitors
The last time out these two sides met, it was Ulsan who won with a rather convincing 2:0 score. As far as last season goes, Ulsan won once, while the remaining 3 matches ended in a draw. To find a match when Gyeongnam actually defeated Ulsan, we have to go way back to 2012, when a closely contested match ended in a 3:2 win for the Reds. It’s clear that Ulsan is the favorite to win any match against Gyeongnam, however, that does not mean they have an easy time doing so, especially at Changwon Football Centre Stadium, where Gyeongnam performs well even against some of the strongest teams in the league. Gyeongnam will enter the match as one of the worst teams in the league, however, their recent performances did have some bright spots, clearly showing Gyeongnam form is improving. Their real test will come against Ulsan, who is heavily favored to win and quite frankly need to win if they are serious about chasing the title. Gyeongnam on the other side don’t need to win, as a simple draw would be more than enough considering they are facing off against one of the strongest teams in 2019 season.
All in all, I was not too convinced by Ulsan performance in their most recent match against Incheon and while there is little to be positive about when talking about Gyeongnam, they do look strong enough to keep this one tied and walk away with a point.
Prediction: Gyeongnam +1.00 Asian Handicap