Jeonbuk 2-2 Seoul in first leg of FA Cup final
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors came from behind to draw 2-2 with FC Seoul in the first leg of the FA Cup final at Seoul World Cup Stadium in western Seoul on Thursday, taking the upper hand in the contest with the away goals rule in effect.
Seoul struck quickly on Thursday, taking the lead in the third minute with a Ki Sung-yueng shot from outside the box. Cho Young-wook piled on in the 38th minute to give the home side a 2-0 lead with a well-placed header from a Kim Jin-ya cross.
Jeonbuk, who had already had a goal ruled offside, finally broke through in the 43rd minute, when Mo Barrow fired a left-footed effort through a busy box to take the score to 2-1.
Minutes later Jeonbuk had the chance to strike again with an injury time penalty at the end of the second half after Kim’s hand connected with the ball in the box. Cho Gue-sung delivered from the spot to tie the score at 2-2 going into the break.
After such an eventful opening frame, things quieted down quickly after the break. The two keepers put on a show for the rest of the game, preventing anything else from crossing the line to end with the score still set at 2-2.
With the away goals rule in effect, that gives Jeonbuk a slight advantage going into the second leg on Sunday. That advantage could end up counting — last year the Jeonnam Dragons won the cup on the away goals rule for the first time in tournament history.
Seoul are looking for their third-ever FA Cup after having won in 1998 and 2015. They finished runners-up in 2014 and 2016.
However, Jeonbuk Hyundai does have more experience at the FA Cup, having won four times in 2000, 2003, 2005 and 2020, while finishing as runners-up in 1999 and 2013. They have the second-most FA Cup trophies, alongside the Pohang Steelers and the Jeonnam Dragons, after the Suwon Samsung Bluewings with five titles. Jeonbuk will be looking for their fifth win, and first in two years.
The FA Cup is not part of the K league season, but is a knockout competition hosted by the Korea Football Association, with the winner earning a ticket to the AFC Champions League.
The second leg of the FA Cup will be played on Sunday at Jeonju World Cup Stadium in Jeonju at 2 p.m.
BY JIM BULLEY AND YUN SO-HYANG [firstname.lastname@example.org]