They’ve washed their hands and gotten fit. Professional soccer club Ulsan Hyundai killed two birds with one stone in its third Asian Champions League (ACL) group stage match.
Ulsan secured a 3-1 victory over Johor Darul Taqzim (Malaysia) in the third match of Group I of the 2023-2024 ACL at the Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium on April 24. Ulsan improved to 6 points (2W-1D) after a 2-1 loss to Kawasaki (Japan) in the second round. The win also snapped a four-match winless streak (two draws and two losses) in their last four official matches.
The win was especially significant for Ulsan. Although Johor is inferior to Ulsan in terms of strength, they were the team that knocked Ulsan out of the ACL group stage last year. Ulsan lost only two games to Johor in the ACL group stage last year. In the aftermath of COVID-19, Ulsan’s group was played in Malaysia, where Johor showed a lot of disrespect by providing a training ground with a bad turf. The team was able to wash its hands of that by welcoming the opponent home.
More encouragingly for Ulsan, they also gave their key players plenty of rest. Ulsan didn’t use many of their main players against Johor, including Lee In-gyu, Lee Cheong-yong, Kim Young-kwon, Bako, and Martin Adam. In particular, Lee Min-kyu, Lee Chung-yong, and Kim Young-kwon didn’t even appear on the substitutes list.토스카지노 주소
It was a bit of a gamble considering the mood of Ulsan, which hadn’t won in four games. But it paid off for Ulsan head coach Hong Myung-bo. Not only did the team come away with a win and a clear conscience, but they also kept their main players healthy. Ulsan can now look forward to the upcoming weekend’s K League matches in full force.
This weekend’s K League 1 Round 35 is crucial for Ulsan. In some cases, Ulsan could clinch the league title. Ulsan leads the league with 67 points, eight points ahead of the second-place Pohang Steelers (59 points). This weekend, Pohang will face Jeonbuk Hyundai and Ulsan will face Daegu FC.
If Pohang ties or loses to Jeonbuk and Ulsan takes Daegu, Ulsan will win its second consecutive league title after last year, regardless of the rest of its schedule. Heading into such a crucial match, Ulsan can only be pleased with their mixed results in the ACL.