Acosti’s confidence remains high after ‘one-goal, one-assist comeback’

Acosti expressed confidence that he can keep his team in the league if he takes care of himself.

Suwon Samseong defeated Suwon FC 3-2 in the 36th round of the Hana OneQ K League 2023 at Suwon Sports Complex on Wednesday. The 12th-ranked Suwon Samseong reduced the gap between them and 11th-ranked Gangwon FC (30 points) to one point with 29 points.

Suwon came from behind to win the game. Suwon were outnumbered in the first 14 minutes when Kazuki was sent off for an illegal elbow. Suwon FC took the lead in the 31st minute through Hugo Gomes.

Suwon turned the game around. Acosti was the main man. In first-half stoppage time, he tied the game after a corner kick bounced off goalkeeper Park Bae-jong and the defense. Then, in the ninth minute of the second half, he helped Ahn Byung-joon score the game-winning goal by chesting down a ball from outside the halfway line. Suwon took the lead thanks to Acosti’s two goals, and despite Kim Hyun’s equalizer in the 16th minute of the second half, Kim Joo-chan scored the winner in the 34th minute.

Acosti has been leading the Suwon Samsung offense lately. In the last match against Hana Citizens, he scored the team’s second goal, and this time he played a revolutionary role in the come-from-behind victory with one goal and one assist.

Acosti attributed his success to his strong mentality and fighting spirit. “It was a very good game today,” he told reporters in the post-match mix zone. Overall, I think the team struggled a lot, but we showed a lot of mental toughness and determination, and that’s what made the difference.”

When asked if scoring two attacking points in a row gave him confidence, he said, “I feel good whenever I score an attacking point, but I don’t think it gives me confidence. I’m confident and I think I can help the team if I’m in good shape,” he said, adding that it’s not about his confidence but his physical condition.

It looks like Acosti has finally found his feet in the K League 1. Acosti spent three seasons with FC Anyang from 2020 before moving to Suwon Samseong ahead of this season. However, he has been plagued by injuries and hasn’t been able to perform well.

Acosti himself feels that he has adapted to the K League 1: “I had a really hard time with injuries at the beginning of the year, but now I’m back in shape and I’m managing to stay healthy until the end. I’ve been playing in the K League 1 for about 10 months and compared to the K League 2, I think the players are better and play more physical soccer. Now I have adapted to the K League 1 and will try to finish well until the end.”

He also thanked the coaching staff, including acting head coach Yeom Ki-hoon, for working together to keep Suwon Samseong in the league. “The coach is playing a big role right now,” Acosti said. He says a lot of good things and listens to the players. I’m especially grateful that he lets me play in my favorite position. Not only the coach, but also the physical coach and the medical team helped me a lot when I went down with an injury. They are the key to my good performance now.”

When asked how the players managed to stay centered when they had four different coaches this season, he said, “It was a difficult season. But the coaching staff has played a big role in that. The coaching staff has really helped us get centered and given us a lot more confidence. I think we showed that today,” he said, explaining that the coaching staff helped Suwon get back on its feet.

Suwon will now need to win all of their remaining matches to avoid direct relegation. They face FC Seoul and Gangwon after the November A match.

“I think I can help the team as long as I’m healthy,” Acosti said. “It’s been a tough season, but it’s not over yet,” said Acosti, “so we’ll do our best to 안전놀이터 manage it well and help us survive. “It’s been a tough season, but it’s not over yet. I’ll do my best to do well in the remaining two games so that we can participate in the promotion playoffs and achieve our biggest goal, which is to stay up,” he said, vowing to play in the K League One next season.

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