Another in a long series of “started but never finished” posts or a proverbial golazo for the Tavern? Time will tell, but here we are with the first “quiniela” for the 2018 K League 1 season. What is a quiniela you ask? Ah, well it’s simply a betting game where one guesses the results. For football, it is a game where you guess the result (but the correct score is not needed). And that is what we shall attempt here. Of course, for the record, it must be stated that this is not an official betting site nor is there any prize at stake here beyond the admiration and respect of the Tavern crew (which is priceless of course, but I digress). Want to get involved? Of course you do! And luckily it’s quite easy to do so.
(image courtesy of Marca.com)
We will run our Tavern quiniela both here on the site as well as on Twitter. So, you can take part on either (or both) platforms and see how your prediction abilities match up with yours truly (full disclosure: my prediction abilities are pretty crap so beating me shouldn’t be too hard). For each K League 1 match you just need to select: home win, draw, or away win. To pick a home win, just write “1”. For a draw, “X”, and for an away win write “2”. Easy right? Then let’s get to it!
1. Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors vs Ulsan Hyundai: 1. (Thursday, March 1, 14:00)
The champions open their campaign at home with their Hyundai cousins from Ulsan. Ulsan look an interesting side with the arrivals of Park Joo-ho and Yohei Toyoda combined with the likes of Mislav Orsic and Ulsan’s existing core. But this Jeonbuk side is loaded as they strengthened in basically every area during the offseason, and it will take something special to get the title off them. Ulsan hopefully can be another side that can push Jeonbuk this season, but can’t see them getting anything in the opener.
2. Suwon Samsung Bluewings vs Jeonnam Dragons: 1. (Thursday, March 1, 14:00)
The opening match of the 2018 season seems a fairly comfortable one on paper. Suwon got better during the offseason while Jeonnam seems weaker with Jair off to China. Suwon also has the advantage of having already played two competitive matches in the ACL to have gotten some of the butterflies and kinks out. Suwon does have an ACL match next week against Shanghai Shenhua, but given that the league moved this match up to allow more rest and there is no travel (both games in Suwon), it shouldn’t prove to be a distraction.
3. Jeju United vs FC Seoul: 1. (Thursday, March 1, 16:00)
In this past this would have been a very interesting match, but Seoul really sold off this offseason notably losing both Dejan and Yun Il-lok along with a raft of solid midfielders. Jeju largely kept the core of the side from last season, but are still likely lacking a bit up front to really challenge for top honors over the long haul. Perhaps Hwang Sun-hong can eventually replicate his Pohang success with Seoul, but Jeju should walk this one comfortably as Seoul looks a shell of their former selves.
4. Pohang Steelers vs Daegu FC: X. (Saturday, March 3, 14:00)
Both sides lost their main attackers with Yang Dong-hyun (Pohang) going to J League side Cerezo Osaka and Evandro and Junior (both Daegu) went to FC Seoul and Ulsan respectively. On paper it doesn’t look like either side really managed to replace them, so goals may be on short supply. A goalless draw in the card perhaps?
5. Gangwon FC vs Incheon United: 1. (Saturday, March 3, 16:00)
There certainly isn’t as much hype or excitement about Gangwon this season as they were slightly more discreet in the market, but they made some decent signings – particularly at the back – and should be in the conversation for a top 6 finish again. Incheon on the other hand will probably be Incheon (insert shruggy here). Somehow they’ll survive, no on will know how, but they’ll get it done. But, no points for them here.
6. Gyeongnam FC vs Sangju Sangmu: 2. (Sunday, March 4, 14:00)
The final match of round 1 sees the only new K League 1 side, Gyeongnam, take the pitch against Sangju. Gyeongnam walked through the league formerly known as the K League Challenge last season, but will likely need at least a few rounds to find their feet against the stronger K League 1 sides – assuming they ever do. Sangju picked up a number of good “signings” in their last batch of recruits, and should be a very good side. Think they’ll be the only visiting team to take all three points this round.
To participate in the Quiniela, simply copy and paste the list below in the comments and respond with your picks. Remember 1 = home win; X = draw; 2 = away win. Home team is listed first.
K League Quiniela – Round 1
1. Jeonbuk Hyundai vs Ulsan Hyundai:
2. Suwon Samsung vs Jeonnam Dragons:
3. Jeju United vs FC Seoul:
4. Pohang Steelers vs Daegu FC:
5. Gangwon FC vs Incheon United:
6. Gyeongnam FC vs Sangju Sangmu: