K League 1 champions Ulsan book their ticket to the ACL Round of 16


Ulsan Hyundai have booked their place in the round of 16 of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League (ACL) thanks to a Martin Adam brace after reaching the top of the K League One this season.

Ulsan drew 2-2 at home against Japan’s Kawasaki Frontale in the final six matches of the 2023-24 ACL Group I at Ulsan Munsu Stadium on Wednesday.

The result leaves Ulsan with 10 points (3W, 1D, 2L) and second place in the group behind Kawasaki (16-5W, 1D). They have more points than Group H runners-up Melbourne City (9) and Group J runners-up Urawa Reds (7) to book their ticket to the Round of 16.

With a total of 20 clubs competing in five groups, the ACL East Asia Group Stage will see the first-place team from each group and the best three second-place teams advance to the round of 16. Two teams from the K League have already joined Ulsan in the round of 16, joining Pohang, who topped Group J. On the 13th, Jeonbuk and Incheon will also try to advance to the Round of 16.

Ulsan conceded an early goal after a sharp attack from Kawasaki, even though they had already qualified for the round of 16. In the 17th minute, Shin Yamada’s left-footed shot from a pass from Yusuke Segawa was blocked by Cho Hyun-woo, but the floating ball was volleyed home by Daiya Tono from the right side of the goal area to rattle the net.

Ulsan, who were struggling with Kawasaki’s pressure and flanking play, conceded another goal in the 31st minute through Tatsuki Seko. Yamada broke down Ulsan’s right flank before crossing to Segawa. Segawa’s calm shot was blocked by Cho Hyun-woo and the defense, but it wasn’t enough to stop Seko’s shot.

Down 2-0, Ulsan had a chance in the 44th minute. Uhm Won-sang’s ball from the right side of the penalty area hit an opponent and deflected, and Martin Adam, who was in front of the goal, got a quick header to rattle the net to end the first half at 1-2.

Ulsan then equalized on a penalty kick in the eighth minute of the second half. Video Assistant Referee (VAR) confirmed that opposing defender Yuto Matsunagane brought down Kim Young-kwon as he raced to win the ball inside the penalty area, and the penalty kick was awarded. Kicker Martin Adam calmly slotted the ball home with his left foot to tie the game. It was Adam’s fifth goal with the ACL. 헤라카지노

Ulsan pushed forward in an attempt to turn the tide, but were unable to create any more decisive chances.

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