“The venom is rising. I’m afraid something will happen.”
Acting FC Seoul coach Kim Jin-gyu, who took over as “interim head coach” after the resignation of Ahn Ik-soo, pulled out Ilyuchenko’s starting card for his first game in charge, a home match against Ulsan Hyundai on Sept. 27.
It’s been exactly 50 days since his last appearance in the starting lineup, against Jeonbuk Hyundai on March 8 (Seoul 1-2). Kim emphasized that Ilyuchenko was full of vigor after seeing his demeanor during a recent trial, saying, “He showed a very good performance, and I told him after the meeting, ‘If you prepare like this, I will give you a chance to start.'”
He wasn’t bluffing. Ilyuchenko pressed Ulsan like a lion stalking its prey from the kickoff whistle and opened the scoring in the ninth minute. His teammate Ki Sung-yong’s shot deflected off the Ulsan defense and into the box, and he expertly controlled the ball with his right thigh before unleashing a non-stop shot into the back of the net. It was the third goal of the league.
As well as scoring in the first half, he was all over the place on defense. He had one interception and three clearances.
The problem is his stamina. He hasn’t been a mainstay in Ahn’s squad for the first half of the season, and his erratic play has left him without the stamina to play a full 90 minutes. In the first half, he was overly motivated and had a tendency to ‘overplay’.
Kim strategically planned to keep the left and right wingers, Kim Sang-hyeop and Kim Jin-ya, on the bench for the first 45 minutes and replace them with Willian and Na Sang-ho in the second half, but at the start of the second half, he also brought Ilyuchenko to the bench. “Ilyuchenko worked as expected, but I tried too hard in the first half,” said Kim. His stamina dropped towards the middle and end of the game, so we made a substitution.”
Nevertheless, Ilyuchenko’s comeback was one of Seoul’s most valuable gains on the day. In the first half, Seoul played with “six-month loanee” Hwang Eui-jo (Nottingham Forest) up top for the first time under Ahn. However, there were concerns. Even if Hwang played well, he would be a “power negative” for Seoul when he returns to his original team this summer. 카지노사이트
As expected, Seoul’s upfront scoring dipped after Hwang Ui-jo left the team in June, and the team’s link-up play became less effective. Meanwhile, Kim Shin-jin struggled up front, but not to the level Seoul wanted. Some have criticized Seoul for not giving Ilyuchenko, who anchored the front line last year, more consistent playing time in the first half of the season in preparation for Hwang’s absence. In fact, he played 10 games through June, five as a starter and averaged less than 30 minutes of playing time.
After a difficult time in Seoul, Ilyuchenko was even rumored to be on his way out last summer. However, under Kim, he has turned things around. The next game is on September 2 against Suwon Samsung in a “supermatch” away match.
Seoul is winless in six games (four draws and two losses) after a 2-2 draw with Ulsan and is in fifth place (40 points). They are only two points behind seventh-place Daegu FC (38), who are in Final B. A win in the rivalry game against Suwon could turn the tide and give Kim’s regime a chance to stabilize. Ilyuchenko’s