Gangwon 1 - 1 Ansan
9-men Ansan frustrated by last gasp equaliser

Mike Brandon @ Seokcho Sports Complex 25th April 2015

Ansan conceded the lead to a late goal for the third match in a row as they are reduced to nine men in Seokcho.

Gangwon started the game in brightly, dominating posession and very much taking the game to the deeply camped visitors. Utilising the flanks, diagonal balls caused much over the shoulder anticipation which was just about managed by the Ansan defence, choosing to knock or sheperd the ball out for corners rather thank play their way out of trouble.

A succesion of corners almost saw Gangwon take the lead, with a header glanced just narrowly wide on the twenty minute mark. Ansan's midfield continued to be overrun, and it was up to a deft display by Captain Shin Hyeongmin and Park Heecheol to keep Gangwon at bay. An Jaejoon was particularly impressive, making some key blocks that kept gangwon from really testing Jeon Taehyeon in the Ansan goal. Gangwon's Seo Bomin added a unique kind of pressure with some Rory Delapesque throw ins that caused chaos in the Ansan box.

Gangwon's growing growing frustrations saw them them take some easy tumbles around the Ansan area that eventually yielded a free-kick in a dangerous position just outside the box. A sigh of relief from the meagre traveling support followed a meek free kick.

Against the run off play Ansan almost took the lead going into half time, when a rare foray into Gangwon territory saw Park Jongjin drag the ball across the face of goal.

The second half kicked off to the Stone Cold Steve Austin theme and Kim Jinho almost applied a stunner with an early chance, but his final touch was weak and covered easily by Jeon.

Ansan soon began to find a foothold in the game and Ko Gyeongmin had a great chance to open the scoring as the ball landed perfectly for him in the box, but his connection was glancing and gratefully scooped up by Gangwon keeper Hwang Kyochung.

Minutes later the breakthrough came as Ansan's growing dominance began to tell. A slip from a Gangwon defender allowed Ansan to run in behind the defence, and a great switch from to the left side of the 18 yard box saw Song Changho smash the ball into the trop right hand corner to put Ansan in front on the 56th minute mark.

Ansan began to kill the game as Gangwon were unable to regain any kind of foothold in the game, and Ansan almost doubled their lead when a header from a corner was touched over the bar by the finger tips of Hwang Kyochung, cueing the stadium announcer to shriek "Supeeeer Saaaaaaave" on the tannoy. Moments later, another Gangwon slip just outside the area allowed Jeong Hyeok to fire a shot at goal, drawing another fantastic save from the Gangwon keeper, who responded by charging at his own player outside of the box. He had to be pulled away by a crowd of Gangwon players before play could continue.

This seemed the catalyst to spark gangwon back into life and they went close several times with less than fifteen minutes left on the clock, fizzing a shot just past the post and drawing Jeon Taehyeon into a save from a free kick. Meanwhile Hwang Kyochung was again drawing attention as he berated the Gangwon bench when attempting to make a substitution.

With less than ten minutes left, a clumsy trip by An Jaejoon drew a second yellow from the referee, reducing Ansan to ten men. The subsequent free kick saw Gangwon form a wall right in front of the Ansan one, a bizarre sight that did little to assist anyone as the free kick came to nothing. The man advantage began to tell, as a goal mouth scramble ensued in the Ansan box, with the ball being just about cleared to the relief of the traveling support, hoping Ansan could close out a game.

Ansan managed to break just two minutes from time, with a ball played across leading to a poor long range effort by Bae Seungjin. However the referee had blown just before he struck the ball and reacted with a second yellow and therefore second dismissal for Ansan, leaving them with just 9 men in a bizarre piece of officiating.

With four minutes of added time and sensing blood Gangwon pressed for the equaliser, forcing Jeon Taehyeon into a fine fingertip save as the second ticked down. Ansan's line was eventually breached in the ninety-second minute, when Choe Seungin fired into the top right of the Ansan goal, leaving the traveling fans in shock and the home fans in elation.

Ansan will feel rightly angered as the over zealous decision to issue a second sending off saw them unable to see out the match. It is Ansan's 4th draw of the campaign, and their third league match in a row that has seen them concede an equaliser in the last ten minutes.

The result sees Ansan lying seventh in the table, undefeated but with just seven points from the opening five games. The late dropped points could come to haunt them come the end of the season.

MOTM 4. Shin Hyeongmin

Posted: 25th April 2015