Will Busan I’Park get struck by luck to trip Jeonbuk Motors in maintaining their K-League champions status?

K-League: Champions Look to Build Momentum for Split Phase

Jeonbuk Motors Hyundai vs Busan I’Park

Jeonbuk Motors aren’t ready to give up their title just yet. The reigning K-League champions finally snapped their recent slump by scoring a huge victory over rivals Ulsan Hyundai.

Jeonbuk are now just two points back of the league lead with one match left in the regular season. They will host Busan I’Park in that final match as they look to enter the all-important split phase with more positive momentum.

Busan have been in disastrous form during the second half of the season, and the K-League 2020 betting odds will have the champions heavily favoured to pick up the home win.


Talking Points

Jeonbuk finally end winless slide

Jeonbuk just have Ulsan’s number. The champions, who dealt the leaders their only other loss of the season, beat them again 2-1 in midweek to complete the double over their main title rivals.

Jeonbuk took the early lead through Mo Barrow after just two minutes, and despite 15 shots (10 on target) from Ulsan in the first half, they were able to hold on to their advantage into half-time. They took greater control of the match in the second half to seal the victory.

That win was crucial for the champions, who have shrunk Ulsan’s lead down to two points. But perhaps more importantly, it halted their recent winless run, which extended to three games after their draw against a suddenly in-form Gwangju. That result should go some way toward building up much-needed confidence heading into the five-round split phase.

Speaking of confidence, Gyo-Won Han continues to play with a lot of it. The 30-year-old midfielder is Jeonbuk’s leading scorer this season with 10 goals and has been a model of consistency. Since June, he has not gone more than two games without scoring a goal.

The arrival of Brazilian striker Gustavo in midseason has given Jeonbuk a much-needed focal point in attack, but Han remains the champions’ most dangerous attacking weapon.

However, Jeonbuk still have work to do to shore up their suddenly shaky defence. Although they still have the second-best defensive record in the league — 19 goals conceded in 21 games — they’ve let in 10 of those goals in their last six games.



Busan’s brutal form continues

The problems continue to pile up for Busan I’Park. They lost 2-1 at home in midweek against Gangwon, which extended their current winless run to four matches. And over their last 10 K-League 2020 results, Busan have won just once, with five defeats and four draws.

Because of that horrendous form and Incheon United’s recent resurgence, Busan are now only three points clear of that lone relegation spot.

Busan were significantly outplayed by Gangwon, who controlled 57 per cent of possession and had 15 shots (seven on target).

It didn’t help that the Royals were once again without leading scorer Lee Jeong-hyeop (six goals) against Gangwon. Lee, who missed their draw against FC Seoul due to injury, had returned against Incheon United as a second-half substitute.

Busan already have limited attacking options as it stands, and Lee’s continued absence against Jeonbuk would be another big blow to their chances of getting a goal.

Meanwhile, Busan have also been missing captain and starting centre-back Kang Min-soo for the last couple of matches.

Kang’s possible return would be a big boost for a Busan defence which has not fared well away from the Busan Gudeok Stadium this season. They’ve let in 18 goals away from home, the second-most in the league.



Jeonbuk have simply dominated Busan in recent years. They’ve won 13 of their 19 meetings in the league and have also won two out of three meetings in the FA Cup.

They met in the quarter-final round of this season’s tournament and Jeonbuk came out 5-1 winners. Busan took an early lead after just four minutes, but Jeonbuk came roaring back in the second half. Gustavo scored a hat-trick in just his second appearance for the team.

Jeonbuk are undefeated in their last eight league meetings against Busan, although they hadn’t met since 2015 prior to this season. Jeonbuk won their first meeting of this season 2-1, but they needed a 90th-minute winner from now-departed forward Lars Veldwijk to come away with the hard-fought victory.


Betting Tip

Jeonbuk Motors Hyundai vs Busan I’Park Busan I’Park Asian Handicap +1.25 @ 2.05
September 20, 14:00(GMT+8)

The SBOTOP odds have Jeonbuk as the overwhelming 1.38 favourites over Busan, who are priced at 7.60 — the longest odds for any team in this round.

It would be a legitimate shock if Jeonbuk somehow failed to beat Busan; they have a terrific home record at 8-1-1, which is the best in the league.

But despite that great record, they have not been dominant by any stretch. Just two of those eight home wins have been by more than one goal.

That’s why despite Busan’s concerning form, they are still an intriguing bet on the Asian Handicap market.

?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.




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