Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Army Utd 2-1 Buriram FC

Army United beat Buriram FC 2-1 to progress to the 5th round (I think) of the FA Cup.

The game was played in soaking wet conditions and in all fairness either side could have won the tie.

As is obligatory at this time of year in Bangkok, the capital city had it's regular teatime downpour, and it had many wondering whether or not the cup tie would go ahead. Thankfully, by the time the game kicked off at 7pm, the main storm had passed. Nevertheless, heavy drizzle was to ensure inside the Royal Thai Army stadium for the entire 90 minutes.

There were no puddles evident on the pitch at kick off time, but as soon as play commenced, there were splashes every time the ball was played along the deck. Under the circumstances, both sides coped well and it was an entertaining spectacle despite the sodden pitch.

The opening goal came in the 58th minute. A cross from the right from Tatree squirmed out of of Buriram's keeper's hands, straight onto the head of Leandro, and the Brazilian duly opened the scoring.

Within a minute the Lava were level when an outswinging free-kick was headed back across the goal for central defender, Chalermpong, to head Buriram level.

Buriram probably looked the more likely to win after their goal as they held the bulk of possession. Army Utd were content to sit back and hope that lone striker Leandro could provide something on the counter attack.

With about 15 minutes left, Army Utd made a couple of offensive substitutions. Their attacking decision paid off when a long corner found Sarawut unmarked at the right-hand side of the box. His low shock sneaked into the bottom corner of the goal to give the home side the lead with about 8 minutes left on the clock.

The Gentlemen Rangers held out to book a 5th round home tie with current FA Cup holders, Chonburi.

As I said earlier, it was a game that could have gone either way, and I must give credit to the referee for doing a good job of officiating the game in difficult conditions. Many refs have come under criticism lately, but the man in the middle tonight did a good job.

Attendance: 3,084