On November 29, 2020, the K League 2 Playoffs (PO) between Suwon FC and Gyeongnam FC took place at Suwon Sports Complex. The winner of the match would be promoted without a promotion PO, as Sangju Sangmu was automatically relegated due to a transfer issue. Suwon FC, which finished second in the regular season, could have reached the first division with a tie. However, the COVID-19 pandemic that was raging at the time forced Suwon FC to take an unexpectedly long break, which proved to be toxic. They played their worst game of the season.
In the second half, when they were trailing 0-1, the sun broke through the darkness of Suwon Sports Complex. "I was watching the game anxiously in the second half, but the sun suddenly shone, and I thought, 'Could this be my lucky break?' It was snowing in the first half, and it worked in the favor of coach Kihyun 'Seol' Kim, and this sunshine was on my side," Kim laughed. As Kim said, 먹튀검증 the sunshine became a "sign of good fortune. Ahn Byung-jun converted a penalty kick in stoppage time to give Suwon FC a miraculous promotion to the top flight.
Three years later, on December 9, Suwon FC found themselves at a crossroads again at Suwon Sports Complex. The second leg of the promotion playoffs against Busan I-Park. If three years ago it was about promotion, this time it was about staying up. Things were not looking good. Suwon FC had come from behind to lose the first leg 2-1. Despite playing well, Lee Seung-woo's sending off and two penalties changed the course of the game. At the worst possible time, not many people expected Suwon to win the second leg. The second leg didn't start well either. They conceded the first goal to Busan in the first 15 minutes. With Busan boasting one of the best defenses in K League 2, Suwon FC was literally on the edge of a cliff. To make matters worse, they had no luck in their second half onslaught, hitting the post twice.
Even Kim said it would be "not easy," but then the sun came out again at Suwon Sports Complex. The sun was once again on Kim's side. Suwon FC equalized in the 33rd minute of the second half with a goal by Kim Hyun, followed by a deceptive equalizer by Lee Young-jae in the 40th minute. Kim pushed Busan harder with his signature attacking soccer. They managed to turn the game around. After Lee Kwang-hyuk's comeback goal in the 5th minute of overtime, Jung Jae-yong in the 11th minute of overtime and Lopez in the 12th minute of overtime drove a wedge into the game. With a 5-2 win and a 6-4 aggregate score in the first and second legs, Suwon FC secured a dramatic retention.
Just like three years ago, Kim shed a tear, but this time it was a tear of relief, an apology. Kim had battled difficulties throughout the season. After promoting Suwon FC from K-League 2 in 2020 and leading the club to a fifth-place finish in K-League 1 in 2021, the club's highest ever finish, Kim led the team to a seventh-place finish in 2022, just missing out on a spot in the Final A. The team finished in seventh place. "This is my third year, and I'm most worried about this year," Kim said before the season started. His fears were realized. The aging of key resources has significantly reduced the amount of play. Injuries continued to pile up, leaving few cards to play. To make matters worse, key outsiders Murillo and Lass left the team in tandem due to injury and a DUI.
The defense was shaky and the attack was dull. Kim changed his tactics to include a three-back and a four-back, a one-top and a two-top, but it didn't work. A 2-7 defeat against Seoul in July was Suwon FC's current state, but there was no giving up. Kim's longtime gentle leadership was back in full force. There were hardly any lethargic matches, as is often the case with relegated teams. Despite the lack of results, the team never lost the motivation to play. It paid off in the end. Without a win in their previous 10 matches (4 draws and 6 losses), Suwon FC produced their most 'Kim Do-gyun-esque' performance of the season when it mattered most. 토토사이트 As the final whistle blew, the relief of survival was overwhelmed by a sense of regret for the fans who had been disappointed. With hot tears in his eyes, Kim's eventful season ended with a 'happy ending'.