Round 39 of the K League Classic is a special midweek edition and features 6 games 3 in each group. As this is the penultimate round of the season there are of course some key clashes in both the championship and relegation groups. However a lot is still up for grabs so there are a couple of big 6 pointers.
*Note* Due to some pretty bad wintery weather forecast, there is the sightly chance of a postponement.
As there are now only 2 rounds of games to go, we’ve are once again including a league table for reference:
Championship Group: Today we’ll have the number of champions league spots allocated to the K League, however it’s expected to stay the same as 4. Therefore with Pohang Steelers winning the FA Cup, the top 4 sides in the K League will enter the competition. The top 4 also won’t change and so Ulsan, Pohang, Jeonbuk and Seoul will be in the champions league next season.
The league title however is a 2 horse race between Ulsan and Pohang, however Pohang need to win both games and hope Ulsan don’t. Therefore if Pohang lose or draw vs. FC Seoul then Ulsan will be K League Classic Champions.
Relegation Group: Somewhat surprisingly everybody is still alive and kicking in the relegation group and although Jeju, Seongnam and Chunnam are safe everybody else is still in danger of either relegation or the playoff. The year the bottom two sides will be relegated down to the K League Challenge. Also the 12th placed team will play in a 2 legged playoff vs. this years K League Challenge champions Sangju Sangmu.
Daejeon Citizen will be relegated this round if they lose, or draw and Gangwon draw. However a win for Gangwon will see them go down as well as Daegu. A win for Gyeongnam would basically confirm that they will not be in the playoffs.
It’s pretty likely that things may come down to the final game of the season.
Incheon United and Jeju United both have a bye round.
This weeks preview of the K League Classic Games is in a slightly briefer style than normal;
K League Classic:
Wednesday November 27th:
Pohang Steelers vs. FC Seoul (2pm) – Championship Group
This strangely timed 2pm Wednesday afternoon game could decide the championship. Pohang basically have to win, whist FC Seoul who are just playing for fun at this point still might want 3rd place. This is a hard game to call but with a 4 game winning run we’re siding with Pohang.
Prediction: 3 – 1
Suwon Bluewings vs. Jeonbuk Motors (7.30pm) – Championship Group
Suwon Bluewings have been on pretty awful form recently with 5 straight defeats and although Jeonbuk are only doing slightly better we feel that even away from home they should take home all 3 points.
Prediction: 0 – 1
Busan I’Park vs. Ulsan Hyundai (7.30pm) – Championship Group
Coming into this game Ulsan might already be champions depending on earlier results, however a win will still be enough to seal the title. This is Busan’s final game of the season and they could still finish a creditable 5th so they won’t bow down to their local rivals championship aspirations. On recent form however you can’t really bet against Ulsan.
Prediction: 1 – 2
Gangwon vs. Daegu (2pm) – Relegation Group
This is a real relegation 6 pointer being played at the odd time of 2pm on a Wednesday afternoon (during term time and on a work day). Gangwon are only 2 points ahead of Daegu, but with only 2 game to go as mentioned above a win for Gangwon will relegate both Daegu and Daejeon. However with both sides having also the same recent form we see this one ending all-square.
Prediction: 0 – 0
Gyeongnam vs. Daejeon Citizen (7pm) – Relegation Group
As we mentioned above this is a must win game for Daejeon (although a win in the afternoon game for Gangwon will make escape impossible anyway). Gyeongnam still face a possible playoff game vs. Sangju Sangmu so a win for them is also important. This is a little hard to predict without knowing the early score but we’re siding with an entertaining draw.
Prediction: 1 – 1
Chunnam Dragons vs. Seongnam (7.30pm) – Relegation Group
This is one of those end of season ends where neither team has any meaningful to play for and it’s basically a post-season friendly game. Chunnam have been much improved in recent weeks whilst Seongnam have been poor and therefore we’re siding with a home win for Chunnam.
Prediction: 2 – 1
K League Classic Round 39 Results
Wednesday November 27th
Pohang Steelers 3 – 1 FC Seoul
Busan I’Park 2 – 1 Ulsan Hyundai
Suwon Bluewings 1 – 0 Jeonbuk Motors
Pohang looked strong as they easied past Seoul in the afternoon game. Busan came from behind to at least delay Ulsan’s championship party. Suwon won for the first time in a while to secure 5th place.
These results mean that Ulsan have a 2 point and +3 goal difference advantage going into the final game of the season when they host Pohang. Which makes the math simple if Ulsan win or draw they are champions but if they lose Pohang take home the title. 2pm on Sunday, it should be interesting.Also confirmed yesterday South Korea will have 4 places in the 2014 AFC Champions League Group stage. Ulsan, Pohang, Jeonbuk and Seoul will be in those spots.
Gangwon 2 – 2 Daegu
Gyeongnam 1 – 1 Daejeon Citizen
Chunnam Dragons 0 – 1 Seongnam
Gangwon came back from 2 goals down to deny Daegu for a vital 3 points. Gyeongnam also equalized late to relegate Daejeon. Seongnam won a basically meaningless game vs. Chunnam.
These results mean that Daejeon have now been relegated from the K League Classic and will play in the K League Challenge next season. Gyeongnam are basically safe and so it’s between Gangwon and Daegu for the final relegation and playoff places.
K League Classic Predictions Round Up
This evening we predicted 3 correct results with 2 perfect scores.
K League Challenge
There are no games in the K League Challenge until the weekend, which like the K League Classic is the final round of the season.
For information on the previous round, K League Classic Round 38 please CLICK HERE.
As always if you have anything you’d like to add please let us know.
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