2021 K League 1

The 2021 K League 1, also known as the Hana 1Q K League 1 for sponsorship reasons, is the 39th season of the top division of professional football in South Korea since its establishment in 1983 as the K League, and the fourth season under its current name, the K League 1. Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors are the defending champions.

2021 K League 1
Season2021
Dates27 February - 5 December 2021
(Promotion-Relegation play-offs until 12 December 2021)
Champions LeagueJeonbuk Hyundai Motors
Ulsan Hyundai
Matches played6
Goals scored13 (2.17 per match)
Top goalscorerStanislav Iljutcenko
(5 goals)
Biggest home winUlsan 5–0 Gangwon
(1 March 2021)
Biggest away winDaegu 0–5 Jeju United
(31 October 2021)
Highest scoringFC Seoul 3–4 Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors
(5 September 2021)
Highest attendance6,199
Lowest attendance1,218
2020
2022
All statistics correct as of 31 October 2021.

Due to COVID-19, the number of games per team was made flexible in the 2021 season, and the number of games to be played was decided in February 2021. The 2021 season will be divided into two parts. First, there will be 33 Regular Rounds in which 12 teams play a round robin with 3 rounds (Rounds 1–33). Then there will be a Final A and Final B, each with 6 teams divided based on regular round performance, with each final being a round robin (Rounds 34–38).

Promotion and relegationEdit

Teams relegated to the 2021 K League 2

Teams promoted from the 2020 K League 2

Impact of the COVID-19 pandemicEdit

On 4 May 2021, One(1) footballer of FC Seoul who played at FC Seoul-Seongnam FC on 30 April 2021 was confirmed positive case of COVID-19 virus disease. Therefore, the 4 matches(14th–17th Round) of FC Seoul(Gwangju-Seoul, Daegu-Seoul, Seoul-Jeonbuk, Seoul-Incheon) and the 4 matches(14th–17th Round) of Seongnam FC(Ulsan-Seongnam, Seongnam-Jeonbuk, Pohang-Seongnam, Seongnam-Gangwon) were postponed.

Participating clubs by provinceEdit

The following twelve clubs will compete in the K League 1 during the 2021 season.[1]

Club City / Area Manager Joined Owner(s) Kit Supplier Sponsor(s)
Daegu FC Daegu   Lee Byung-keun 2002 Government of Daegu, Citizen Stockholder Goal Studio DGB Daegu Bank, AJIN Industrial Co., Ltd.
Gangwon FC Gangwon   Kim Byung-soo 2009 Government of Gangwon, Citizen Stockholder Applerind Gangwon Land
Gwangju FC Gwangju   Kim Ho-young 2010 Government of Gwangju, Citizen Stockholder Kelme Government of Gwangju
Incheon United Incheon   Jo Sung-hwan 2004 Government of Incheon, Citizen Stockholder Macron Shinhan Bank, Incheon International Airport
Jeju United Jeju-do   Nam Ki-il 1983 SK Energy Puma SK Energy
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors Jeonbuk   Kim Sang-sik 1995 Hyundai Motor Company Hummel Hyundai Motor Company
Pohang Steelers Pohang   Kim Gi-dong 1983 POSCO Puma POSCO, Pohang City Hall
Seongnam FC Seongnam   Kim Nam-il 1988 Government of Seongnam, Citizen Stockholder Umbro Government of Seongnam
FC Seoul Seoul   Park Jin-sub 1984 GS Group Le Coq Sportif GS Shop, GS Caltex
Suwon Samsung Bluewings Suwon   Park Kun-ha 1996 Cheil Worldwide in Samsung Puma Samsung Electronics
Suwon FC Suwon   Kim Do-kyun 2013 Government of Suwon, Citizen Stockholder Hummel Government of Suwon
Ulsan Hyundai Ulsan   Hong Myung-bo 1984 Hyundai Heavy Industries Hummel Hyundai Oil Bank, Hyundai Heavy Industries

StadiumsEdit

Daegu FC Gangwon FC Gwangju FC Incheon United Jeju United Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors
DGB Daegu Bank Park Chuncheon Songam Sports Town Gangneung Stadium Gwangju Football Stadium Incheon Football Stadium Jeju World Cup Stadium Jeonju World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 12,415 Capacity: 20,000 Capacity: 22,333 Capacity: 10,007 Capacity: 20,891 Capacity: 29,791 Capacity: 42,477
           
Pohang Steelers Seongnam FC FC Seoul Suwon Samsung
Bluewings
Suwon FC Ulsan Hyundai
Pohang Steel Yard Tancheon Stadium Seoul World Cup Stadium Seoul Olympic Stadium(Final Round) Suwon World Cup Stadium Suwon Stadium Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium
Capacity: 17,443 Capacity: 16,146 Capacity: 66,704 Capacity: 69,950 Capacity: 44,031 Capacity: 11,808 Capacity: 44,102
             

Foreign playersEdit

Restricting the number of foreign players strictly to five per team, including a slot for a player from the Asian Football Confederation countries and a slot for a player from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. A team could use five foreign players on the field each game, including at least one player from the AFC confederation.   Samuel Pungi, playing for Pohang Steelers, was deemed to be a native player as he had been granted South Korean nationality.
The name in bold indicates that the player was registered during the mid-season transfer window.

Club Player 1 Player 2 Player 3 AFC Player ASEAN Player Former Player
Daegu FC   Césinha   Edgar   Lamas   Tsubasa Nishi   Serginho
Gangwon FC   Vladimir Silađi   Momchil Tsvetanov   Matija Ljujić   Rustam Ashurmatov   Masatoshi Ishida
Gwangju FC   Reis   Aleksandar Andrejević   Johnathan   Felipe
Incheon United   Stefan Mugoša   Elías Aguilar   Negueba   Harrison Delbridge
Jeju United   Oskar Zawada   Gerso Fernandes   Islom Kenzhaboev
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors   Modou Barrow   Gustavo   Stanislav Iljutcenko   Takahiro Kunimoto   Sasalak Haiprakhon
Pohang Steelers   Manuel Palacios   Mario Kvesić   Borys Tashchy   Alex Grant
Seongnam FC   Richard Windbichler   Fejsal Mulić   Sergiu Buș   Jamshid Iskanderov
FC Seoul   Osmar   Aleksandar Paločević   Gabriel   Connor Chapman   Ikromjon Alibaev
Suwon Samsung Bluewings   Doneil Henry   Uroš Đerić   Nicolao Dumitru   Terry Antonis
Suwon FC   Lars Veldwijk   Murilo   Tardeli   Lachlan Jackson   Victor
Ulsan Hyundai   Dave Bulthuis   Valeri Qazaishvili   Jason Davidson
  Lukas Hinterseer

League tableEdit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation[a]
1 Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors (Q) 36 20 10 6 67 37 +30 70 Qualification for the Champions League group stage
2 Ulsan Hyundai (Q) 36 20 10 6 62 41 +21 70 Qualification for the Champions League play-off round
3 Daegu FC 36 15 10 11 41 44 −3 55
4 Jeju United 37 13 15 9 52 42 +10 54[b] Potential qualification for the Champions League play-off round[c]
5 Suwon FC 37 13 9 15 51 57 −6 48
6 Suwon Samsung Bluewings 36 12 9 15 42 48 −6 45
7 Pohang Steelers 36 12 9 15 40 43 −3 45
8 Incheon United 36 12 9 15 37 44 −7 45
9 Seongnam FC 37 11 11 15 33 44 −11 44
10 FC Seoul 36 11 10 15 44 45 −1 43
11 Gangwon FC 36 9 12 15 38 50 −12 39 Qualification for Relegation play-offs
12 Gwangju FC (Y) 37 10 6 21 41 53 −12 36[b] Relegation to K League 2
Updated to match(es) played on 27 November 2021. Source: K League
Rules for classification: 1) Points; 2) Goals scored; 3) Goal difference; 4) Number of wins; 5) Head-to-head points.
(Q) Qualified to the phase indicated; (Y) ?
Notes:
  1. ^ Teams were split into two groups (Final A and Final B) after each have played 33 matches.
  2. ^ a b Originally a 1–1 draw, the Gwangju vs Jeju United match was awarded 0–3 to Jeju United by the Korean Professional Football League, after breaches of rules for substitutes by Gwangju.[2]
  3. ^ if Daegu is the third-placed team and wins the 2021 Emperor's Cup, the fourth-placed team will qualify for the play-off round.

The fourth-placed team will qualify only if Daegu comes third and also wins the 2021 Korean FA Cup.

Positions by matchdayEdit

  Leader & AFC Champions League group stage
  Qualification to AFC Champions League qualification play-offs
  Relegation playoffs
  Relegation to the 2022 K League 2

Round 1–33Edit

Team ╲ Round123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930313233
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors242211111111111111222322222222221
Ulsan Hyundai111123222222222222111111111111112
Daegu FC5811101091111111086434444425244674433333
Suwon FC591011111212121211121212117888765656433344444
Jeju United775776887433356666688989858888555
Suwon Samsung Bluewings433334446354543333333433567665666
Pohang Steelers324467698645665555536665356576777
Incheon United96898810101012111191010777867577845777898
FC Seoul115964233479888111211119111010101111121212111010109
Gangwon FC12111212121077581091099999119989811101011111212810
Seongnam FC7106555553567778101010101011121110101111109991111
Gwangju FC1012789119699710111212121212121012111212129991011111212
Updated to match(es) played on 24 October 2021. Source: kleague.com

Round 34–38Edit

Updated to match(es) played on 27 November 2021. Source: kleague.com

Fixtures and resultsEdit

Matches 1–22Edit

Teams play each other twice, once at home, once away.

Home \ Away DGU GWN GJU ICU JJU JHM PHS SNM SEL SSB SWN USH
Daegu FC 1–0 1–4 3–0 1–1 1–0 1–1 0–0 1–1 1–0 1–1 2–1
Gangwon FC 3–0 0–1 2–0 2–2 1–1 1–3 0–0 0–0 3–0 0–0 2–2
Gwangju FC 0–1 3–1 2–1 0–0 0–2 0–1 0–0 1–1 3–4 2–0 0–1
Incheon United 2–1 1–0 2–1 0–3 1–1 1–1 1–0 0–1 0–0 4–1 0–0
Jeju United 1–2 1–1 1–1 1–4 1–1 1–0 2–2 2–1 2–1 1–3 1–2
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors 3–2 2–1 3–0 5–0 1–1 0–1 1–0 2–0 1–3 1–1 2–4
Pohang Steelers 0–0 1–1 1–0 2–1 0–0 1–3 1–0 0–1 0–3 1–0 1–1
Seongnam FC 0–0 1–2 2–0 1–3 0–0 1–5 2–1 1–0 0–1 2–3 0–1
FC Seoul 0–1 0–1 2–1 0–1 0–1 3–4 1–2 2–2 0–3 3–0 0–0
Suwon Samsung Bluewings 1–1 1–1 1–0 1–2 3–2 1–3 1–1 1–0 1–2 1–2 3–0
Suwon FC 2–4 2–1 2–1 2–2 2–1 1–0 3–4 1–2 1–1 0–0 0–1
Ulsan Hyundai 2–1 5–0 2–0 3–1 0–0 0–0 1–0 2–2 3–2 1–1 2–5
Source: K League
Legend: Blue = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.

Matches 23–33Edit

Teams will play each other once.

Home \ Away DGU GWN GJU ICU JJU JHM PHS SNM SEL SSB SWN USH
Daegu FC 1–2 3–1 0–2 0–0 2–1
Gangwon FC 2–0 2–1 2–2 0–1 1–0 1–4
Gwangju FC 1–0 0–3
awarded
1–2 2–3 2–0
Incheon United 2–0 0–1 1–2 0–1 0–1 0–0
Jeju United 0–1 2–2 2–1 1–0 2–2
Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors 2–1 2–0 2–0 3–2 1–0 2–2
Pohang Steelers 1–2 0–1 2–4 0–0 3–1 1–2
Seongnam FC 2–0 0–0 1–0 1–1 2–1
FC Seoul 1–1 1–0 0–0 2–2 2–1 1–2
Suwon Samsung Bluewings 3–2 2–2 0–0 1–2 0–2 0–3
Suwon FC 1–0 1–3 1–0 3–1 0–3
Ulsan Hyundai 2–1 1–0 3–2 0–0 3–1
Source: K League
Legend: Blue = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.

Final Round Matches 34–38Edit

Teams will play each other once.

Relegation playoffsEdit

The Promotion-relegation playoffs will be contested between the winners of K League 2 playoff and the 11th placed team in the K League 1. The winners will secure a place in the 2022 K League 1.

Daejeon Hana Citizenv11th place of K League 1

11th place of K League 1vDaejeon Hana Citizen

Season statisticsEdit

AwardsEdit

Most Valuable Player of the RoundEdit

Monthly AwardsEdit

Month Player of the Month Young Player of the Month Manager of the Month Goal of the Month
Player Club Player Club Manager Club Division Player Club
March   Ki Sung-yueng FC Seoul Not awarded   Kim Sang-sik Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors K League 1   Kim Min-woo Suwon Samsung Bluewings
April   Edgar Daegu FC Not awarded   Lee Woo-hyung FC Anyang K League 2   Fejsal Mulić Seongnam FC
May   Cesinha Daegu FC Not awarded   Park Kun-ha Suwon Samsung Bluewings K League 1   Lee Ki-je Suwon Samsung Bluewings
June Not awarded Not awarded   Kim Tae-wan Gimcheon Sangmu K League 2   Paik Seung-ho Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors
July Not awarded Not awarded   Jo Sung-hwan Incheon United K League 1   Lars Veldwijk Suwon FC
August   Gustavo Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors   Eom Ji-sung Gwangju FC   Hong Myung-bo Ulsan Hyundai K League 1   Lee Chung-yong Ulsan Hyundai
September   Cho Young-wook FC Seoul   Seol Young-woo Ulsan Hyundai   Lee Byung-keun Daegu FC K League 1   Paik Seung-ho Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors
October   Lee Dong-gyeong Ulsan Hyundai   Um Won-sang Gwangju FC   Nam Ki-il Jeju United K League 1   Lee Hee-gyun Gwangju FC

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "K League Official Club Profiles Page".
  2. ^ "'교체 횟수 초과' 광주, 제주전 0-3 몰수패". www.news1.kr (in Korean). News 1. 24 September 2021. Retrieved 24 September 2021.
  3. ^ a b "K LEAGUE / Record".