Sunday, December 8, 2013

Div 2 Playoffs - The Final Standings

Group A

Luk Esan 1-0 Kasetsart
Phitsanulok 1-0 Prachuap
Roi Et Utd 3-1 Nara Utd

Final Standings:
25 Roi Et Utd
19 Phitsanulok
12 Kasetsart
12 Nara Utd
9 Luk Esan
5 Prachuap

Roi Et Utd and Phitsanulok finished just as they started with respective victories over Nara Utd and Prachuap. Diego Alves scored twice for the White Squirrels in their 3-1 victory over Nara Utd. In between his goals Ronnachai added a second for Roi Et while Francis Dumaka scored Nara's goal from a penalty kick.
A free kick from Gil Neves on the stroke of half time separated Phitsanulok and Prachuap while Luk Esan also only needed one goal to defeat Kasetsart.

Group B

Ang Thong 2-0 Paknampho NSRU
Chiang Mai 2-1 Nakhon Nayok
Udon Thani 0-1 Sukhothai

Final Standings:
20 Chiang Mai
17 Ang Thong
16 Sukhothai
9 Udon Thani
7 Nakhon Nayok

The promotion showdown between Ang Thong and Paknampho NSRU ended in farcical circumstances. Ang Thong were awarded a 2-0 win after NSRU failed to return to the pitch after walking off in the 42nd minute. The Nakhon Sawan side were outraged when the referee awarded a penalty against them and then subsequently reduced them to ten players in the melee that followed. In NSRU's defence, it was a blatant dive for the spot kick and they did have a debatable offside ruling against them which prevented them taking a 1-0 lead. However, I can't defend them for throwing the towel in even if they thought the referee had been bought. In the football culture in which I grew up, you give it your best shot and fight to the end even if everything seems to be going against you. At least then you can walk away with your head held high. What Paknampho NSRU did was take the coward's way out. Not only did they let the players and fans down, they also did Sukhothai an injustice as they could have earned promotion had this game ended in a tie.

Anyway, Sukhothai's 1-0 win at Udon Thani wouldn't have been enough but I'm guessing news filtered through to them during the game about the shenanigans at Ang Thong. Sukhothai's winning goal came courtesy of a free kick from club captain Junsom.
Chiang Mai wrapped up the group title with a 2-1 victory over Nakhon Nayok. Chatchai was yet again on the scoresheet with a goal in each half for the Lanna Tigers. The visitors grabbed a late goal but it was a mere consolation.

To conclude the formalities, Chiang Mai will face Roi Et Utd over two legs to decide who wins the Champions league. The real issue of promotion has already been achieved but the two deciders give narcissistic, hi-so individuals connected with each club an opportunity to plaster their faces all over the relevant media landscape.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Div 2 Playoffs - Matchday 10

Group A - Sunday

Luk Esan v Kasetsart
Phitsanulok v Prachuap
Roi Et Utd v Nara Utd

Current Standings:
22 Roi Et Utd
16 Phitsanulok
12 Kasetsart
12 Nara Utd
6 Luk Esan
5 Prachuap

There will be no dramatic last day heroics in Group A as it's all done and dusted. In my opinion, it's been a formality since Matchday 2 that Roi Et and Phitsanulok would prevail from this pool.

Group B - Saturday

Ang Thong v Paknampho NSRU
Chiang Mai v Nakhon Nayok
Udon Thani v Sukhothai

Current Standings:
17 Chiang Mai
14 Ang Thong
13 Sukhothai
9 Udon Thani
7 Nakhon Nayok

Throughout the playoffs, Group B has been far more rousing than Group A and plenty of last day furore is anticipated. With Chiang Mai safely promoted, Ang Thong and Paknampho NSRU will battle it out on Saturday for that last remaining golden ticket. The winner of this match will join the other three clubs in the division one bound glass elevator. However, if it's a tie between the dueling duo, Sukhothai could slip into the top 2 if they have beaten Udon Thani by at least three goals.
All matches will kick off at 4pm.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Div 2 Playoffs - Matchday 9 Review

Group A

Kasetsart 4-1 Nara Utd
Prachuap 0-0 Luk Esan
Roi Et Utd 1-1 Phitsanulok

Current Standings:
22 Roi Et
16 Phitsanulok
12 Kasetsart
12 Nara Utd
6 Luk Esan
5 Prachuap

Roi Et and Phitsanulok both had reasons to be cheerful after their 1-1 draw. The point was enough for Roi Et to claim top spot in Group A and for Phitsanulok they finally progressed from the playoffs at the third time of asking. Diego Alves had given Roi Et a first half lead but that was cancelled out when Sirichai headed home in the second period.
Kasetsart moved into third place after the beat Naru Utd 4-1 while a 0-0 stalemate between Prachuap and Luk Esan perfectly sums up their contribution to the group.

Group B

Nakhon Nayok 3-4 Sukhothai
Paknampho NSRU 2-0 Chiang Mai
Udon Thani 1-4 Ang Thong

Current Standings:
17 Chiang Mai
14 Ang Thong
13 Sukhothai
9 Udon Thani
7 Nakhon Nayok

The three teams in pursuit of that elusive second promotion spot all won to set up a nail biting last weekend.
Ang Thong host NSRU next Saturday and the winner of the tie will secure promotion to the first division.
Paknampho NSRU took advantage of a Chiang Mai side who are already assured promotion with a 2-0 home victory. A first half Tanawat free kick and a second half penalty converted by Rewat earned the Nakhon Sawan club three vital points.
Ang Thong ended any lingering hopes Udon Thani had with an impressive 4-1 victory. A double apiece from Khampheng and Viliam ensured the Rice Warriors have their destiny in their own hands for the big showdown with NSRU on the final matchday.
The comeback of the day came at Nakhon Nayok. With ten minutes left, Sukhothai were trailing 3-1 and seemingly their season was ending prematurely. However, three late goals helped them turnaround the tie and it kept their slim hopes of sneaking into second spot alive. They need Ang Thong and NSRU to draw next weekend and in correspondence they have to win handsomely at Udon Thani.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Div 2 Playoffs - Matchday 9 Preview

Division 2 Playoffs

Group A - Sunday

Kasetsart v Nara Utd
Prachuap v Luk Esan
Roi Et Utd v Phitsanulok

Current Standings:
21 Roi Et
15 Phitsanulok
12 Nara Utd
9 Kasetsart
5 Luk Esan
4 Prachuap

Roi Et Utd confirmed promotion last weekend and now they only need a point at home to Phitsanulok to secure the top berth in Group A. Phitsanulok's surprise loss at Luk Esan last Sunday leaves them still needing three points to join Roi Et in the first division next year. The club from the northern region possess a superior H2H record over third placed Nara Utd. In addition to that, a home fixture against Prachuap in the final round leaves Phitsanulok strong favorites to accompany the White Squirrels in climbing up the tiers.
Nara Utd slipped up last weekend when the were held at home by lowly Prachuap. The Kolaks have two away matches to finish off their campaign with Kasetsart on Sunday followed by Roi Et next weekend.

Group B - Saturday

Nakhon Nayok v Sukhothai
Paknampho NSRU v Chiang Mai
Udon Thani v Ang Thong

Current Standings:
17 Chiang Mai
11 Ang Thong
10 Sukhothai
9 Udon Thani
7 Nakhon Nayok

With Chiang Mai already securing promotion, the big question now is who will join them. NSRU welcome the Division 1 bound club on Saturday and a win for the university side would leave them in prime contention to join the Lanna Tigers in making the leap up. However, failure to secure three points would open things up for the trio lingering closely in their footsteps.
Udon Thani can boast a 100% record of winning their three home games yet they'll be dismayed that they've collected zilch from five away trips. With two home games against Ang Thong and Sukhothai remaining, 15 points could be enough to secure promotion.
Sukhothai got of to a flying start in the group with two wins but it's been six games sine they last registered a success. Incidentally their last win was a 1-0 over this weekend's opponents Nakhon Nayok.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Weekend Review 23/24 November

League Cup Final

Ratchaburi 1-2 Buriram Utd

Buriram United came from behind to win the League Cup and hence made another clean sweep of the domestic trophies for the second time in three seasons.
Former Buriram man, Douglas Gardozo, headed Ratchaburi in front in the 10th minute. The Brazilian then turned from hero to villain when he was ordered off two minutes into the second half for elbowing Manuel Redondo in the face. The incident took place in the box and the Dragons were punished further when Osmar tucked his penalty into the bottom corner of the net.
From then on, there was only ever going to be one winner. The winning goal came in the 64th minute after Adisak easily beat his marker before slotting home. The matchwinner's day was slightly spoiled when he was given a second yellow card deep into injury time for needlessly playing on after the referee had whistled to stop the action. It didn't matter and Buriram picked up a handsome cheque for 5M Baht along with the trophy.

Division 2 Playoffs

Group A

Kasetsart 0-1 Roi Et Utd
Luk Esan 1-0 Phitsanulok
Nara Utd 0-0 Prachuap

Roi Et's away win at Kasetsart meant their fans were saying bye-bye to Division 2. Pradya's header from close range was the only goal for Roi Et as their large travelling support finally celebrated their elevation to the first division after their third attempt of negotiating the playoffs.
The shock of the day came at Luk Esan as they finally ended a barren 703 minute run of firing blanks. Vorraseth became the junior Police side's only scorer in the playoffs. It was even more surprising that Luk Esan beat Phitsanulok 1-0 as they played for over an hour of the match with ten men after Wanchalerm was dismissed.
Nara United blew a great chance to close in on Phitsanulok's failure as they were held 0-0 at home by Prachuap.

Group B

Chiang Mai 2-0 Ang Thong
Nakhon Nayok 2-1 Udon Thani
Sukhothai 1-1 Paknampo NSRU

Chiang Mai booked their place in the first division after a 2-0 victory over Ang Thong. A goal from Chatchai in each half won the contest for the Lanna Tigers. Chiang Mai are six points ahead of third placed Ang Thong with two games left to play and their superior H2H over the Rice Warriors ends Chiang Mai's two year stint in the regional leagues.
The draw between Sukhothai and Paknampo NSRU keeps both in the hunt but NSRU will be happier with the point as it leaves them in second place. An unmarked Brruno headed home the opening goal in the 30th minute but Paknampo levelled 12 minutes into the second half with Suphachai's curled shot.
Udon Thani suffered their fifth away defeat losing 2-1 at Nakhon Nayok. Two goals in as many minutes gave the hosts a 2-0 half time lead. Udon did pull one back through Satja but the defeat has left them three points behind second placed NSRU with two games left. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Weekend Preview 23/24 November

League Cup Final

Ratchaburi v Buriram Utd (Saturday 17:45)

The Thammasart Stadium hosts a rerun of last year's league cup final. The showpiece in 2012 was a non-event as a spectacle with Buriram cruising to a 4-1 victory against a Ratchaburi side that had no listed substitutes on their bench. Ratchaburi were down to their bare bones because they had eight Buriram loanees on their books who were ineligible for the final.
This time, the Dragons should have a full compliment to select from. Nevertheless, on current form it's hard to foresee them lifting the trophy and Buriram are strongly fancied to retain the cup for a third successive season. Another win for Buriram would earn their second treble in three years and it would clinch their eighth domestic trophy from the last nine available.
The Thunder Castle have yet to face TPL opposition in the tournament this year seeing off Luk Esan, Kalasin, Siam Navy, Udon Thani and Rayong FC on route to the final.
Ratchaburi started their trail at Prachinburi before edging out Lamphun Warrior. The Dragons then smashed seven goals against Khon Kaen to reach the quarter finals where they disposed of the much fancied Chonburi. In the semi finals, Ratchaburi were rather fortunate to squeeze past Nakhon Ratchasima on away goals.

Division 2 Playoffs

Group A - Saturday

Kasetsart v Roi Et Utd
Luk Esan v Phisanulok (Sunday)
Nara Utd v Prachuap

Roi Et will secure promotion if they are successful at Kasetsart on Saturday while Phitsanulok could also claim a first division spot if they win at Luk Esan and Naru Utd fail to beat Prachuap.

Group B - Sunday

Chiang Mai v Ang Thong
Nakhon Nayok v Udon Thani
Sukhothai v Paknampo NSRU

With five points separating the top 5, there is still plenty to play for with three rounds of fixtures remaining. Chiang Mai have stumbled on the road in their last two games but they'll expect to get back to winning ways when they host Ang Thong. Three points for the Lanna Tigers would leave them on the brink of promotion. However, a loss would allow Ang Thong to join Chiang Mai on 14 points.
Udon Thani have lost all of their four away matches but they need to end that sequence by winning at bottom placed Nakhon Nayok.
Sukhothai haven't won in their last five attempts yet a win over Paknampo NSRU could see them jump back into the top 2 provided other results work in their favour. NSRU currently sit in second spot after two recent home wins.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Weekend Review 15-17 November

AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers - Group B


Thailand 0-3 Iran
Kuwait 0-0 Lebanon


Kuwait 3-1 Thailand
Lebanon 1-4 Iran

Current Standings (after 5 matches):
13 Iran
9 Kuwait
5 Lebanon
0 Thailand

Iran easily swept aside a lackluster Thai team with a 3-0 victory at the sparsely filled Rajamangala Stadium. The first half performance was one of the poorest displays in recent memory with soft defending gifting the Iranians a 2-0 lead. Iran seemed to take their foot off the gas after the break and Thailand improved but rarely tested the Iranian goalkeeper.
Substitute Puwadol was given a straight red card in injury time and shortly afterwards Iran added a third goal.

Edit: Results on Tuesday mean Iran and Kuwait qualify from Group B.

Div 2 Playoffs

Group A 

Pitsanulok 3-0 Nara Utd
Prachuap 2-2 Kasetsart
Roi Et Utd 4-0 Luk Esan

Results on Saturday left Roi Et and Phitsanulok certainties for promotion. The big clash of the round was comfortably won by Phitsanulok as they beat Nara Utd 3-0. Somlak gave the northern club the lead shortly after the half hour and that was doubled midway through the second half when Bani's drive found the bottom corner of the net. Gil Neves put the icing on the cake with a penalty in the last few minutes. The victory moves Phitsanulok four points ahead of third placed Nara Utd.
Roi Et are seven points clear of third place after they romped to a 4-0 victory over what appears to be a uninterested Luk Esan.  Erivaldo opened the scoring in the 24th minute before Kittisak doubled the advantage six minutes later. By half time it was game over when Erivaldo's penalty made it 3-0. The only goal of the second half came from Thongchai's header via a corner.
The 2-2 draw between Prachuap and Kasetsart extinguishes the Bangkok side's faint hopes of making it to Division 1.

Group B 

Ang Thong 1-1 Sukhothai
Paknampo NSRU 5-1 Nakhon Nayok
Udon Thani 2-1 Chiang Mai

If Group A is a forgone conclusion, Group B is anything but.
Udon Thani maintained their 100% home record after they consigned Chiang Mai to their first defeat. The away side started the brighter and they were rewarded in the 14th minute when Chatchai fired his shot inside the post. However, Satja drilled through a cluster of bodies to level shortly before the interval and Udon Thani's winner came nine minutes from time when Wiraphong curled home a free kick.
Paknampo NSRU moved into second place with a comprehensive 5-1 win over Nakhon Nayok. Rewit gave NSRU an early lead but that was wiped out in the 22nd minute when the unsuspecting Anurak was credited with an own goal after the ball bounced off his back following a goalkeeper fumble. It remained level until the midpoint of the second half but that changed when Rewit grabbed his second of the day. Tiene Moussa then headed into his own net before late goals from Camara Souleymane and Jaruwat completed the rout.
On Saturday, Ang Thong were seconds away from claiming a vital three points. Nuttawat had headed Ang Thong into a first half lead and it seemed as full time approached that the Rice Warriors had dug in for the win despite being under the cosh for the majority of the second half. Sukhothai didn't throw in the towel when Titi's 87th minute dismissal had them reduced to ten men. Instead the kept plugging away and they were rewarded in the 95th minute when Bruno headed a deserved leveller.
Chiang Mai remain top with 14 points with NSRU and Ang Thong on 11. They are closely followed by Sukhothai and Udon Thani on 9. Nakhon Nayok are well adrift at the bottom with 4. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Weekend 15-19 November Preview

AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers - Group B


Thailand v Iran
Kuwait v Lebanon


Kuwait v Thailand
Lebanon v Iran

Current Standings (after 3 matches):
7 Iran
5 Kuwait
4 Lebanon
0 Thailand

As you can see from above, Thailand's task of qualifying is virtually dead and buried. Six points from the next two matches could shake things up, but that's as likely to happen as Shola Ameobi winning the EPL Golden Boot this season.
The national team's latest coach, Surachai Jaturapattarapong, won't have any of the SEA Games under 23 squad at his disposal while several of Winnie Schafer's favorites have also mysteriously vanished from the squad.
Rajamangala will host the Iran match before the squad fly out to Kuwait over the weekend.

Div 2 Playoffs

Group A - Saturday

Pitsanulok v Nara Utd
Prachuap v Kasetsart
Roi Et Utd v Luk Esan

The clash of the weekend comes at Phitsanulok as they welcome improving Nara United. The Violet Army have seen their favorites win all of their home games in the group yet two recent defeats on the road has seen Phitsanulok's substantial advantage whittled down to only one point. Nara United's foreign contingent has been largely responsible for their recent revival which has seen them win their last three matches. The winner of this match would head into the final straight as likely contenders to join Roi Et in the first division.
Roi Et will be much fancied to beat Luk Esan and another win would leave them on the cusp of securing promotion. Kasetsart are four points adrift of the top 2 and a win at Prachuap is essential if they are to keep their outside promotion hopes intact.

Group B - Sunday

Ang Thong v Sukhothai (now Saturday)
Paknampo NSRU v Nakhon Nayok
Udon Thani v Chiang Mai

As with Group A, the second placed side hosts the one below them in the standings. A home victory for Ang Thong over Sukhothai would move them five points clear of Sukhothai and it would almost certainly consign the northern club to another season of regional league football.
Paknampo NSRU are level on points with Sukhothai and they'll be looking to cash in on the Ang Thong v Sukhothai contest with a home victory over Nakhon Nayok who are currently propping up the table.
Udon Thani have won both of their home matches but they have a tough task preserving that 100% record when they welcome leaders Chiang Mai.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Buriram Claim FA Cup & Div 2 Round-up

FA Cup Final

Bangkok Glass 1-3 Buriram Utd

Buriram United claimed their third successive FA Cup as they came from behind to beat Bangkok Glass 3-1 at the Thammasart Stadium.
It was a sluggish start from the cup holders and they fell behind in the 17th minute when Chatree's shot from the edge of the box nestled in the bottom corner of the net.
Buriram were level on the half hour when a trip from Teerathep on the edge of the box was punished and Osmar Ibanez netted from the penalty spot.
After the break, Buriram took a stranglehold of the midfield and they went ahead in the 53rd minute when Carmelo Gonzalez headed past Narit in the BG goal.
By this stage Glass were being run ragged at the back and it was game over on the hour when Hirano nodded home Carmelo's cutback.
Buriram comfortably saw the game out as Bangkok Glass finished the final with ten men after Goran Subara was shown a second yellow in the 80th minute.
Buriram now have a two week break before they have the chance to complete the final piece of the domestic treble. Only Ratchaburi stand in their way in the League Cup final. 

Division 2 Playoffs

Group A

Kasetsart 1-0 Phitsanulok
Nara Utd 2-0 Luk Esan
Prachuap 0-1 Roi Et Utd

Results on Saturday opened up Group A. Kasetsart's 1-0 win over Phitsanulok leaves them four points behind second placed Phitsanulok with four to play. Late comers to the university campus would have missed an unmarked Manit netting the only goal of the contest. Kasetsart's Rungrot was the hero of the day as he saved a second half penalty to deny Somlak.
A late double from Njobato Abel earned Nara United a 2-0 win over struggling Luk Esan. That three points moves the Kolaks one point off the promotion spots.
Roi Et won 1-0 at Prachuap to move three points clear of Phitsanoluk at the top. Erivaldo was yet again the match winner for the White Squirrels scoring the only goal of the match at the beginning of the second half.

Group B

Nakhon Nayok 0-1 Ang Thong
Paknampo NSRU 2-1 Udon Thani
Sukhothai 2-2 Chiang Mai

Sukhothai and Chiang Mai fought out a pulsating 2-2 draw yesterday. A long range strike from Sittichai gave the hosts the lead after a quarter of an hour. The Fire Bats held that lead until midway through the second half before two goals in three minutes from Chiang Mai stunned the home support. Sukhothai drew level in the 76th minute when Sirisak headed home after the CM keeper had poorly misjudged a lofted ball into the box. Pornthep received a second yellow card as Chiang Mai finished the match with ten players.
The Lanna Tigers lead was cut to four points at the top after Ang Thong won 1-0 at Nakhon Nayok. Kampheng's 25 yard free kick in the 47th minute was the only goal a dominant Ang Thong could register. The Rice Warriors hit the bar three times and had two goals disallowed.
Paknampo NSRU ended a sticky patch with a 2-1 home victory over Udon Thani. The winning goal came on the hour with Thonwat curling a free kick directly into the net. NSRU and Sukhothai are two points behind Ang Thong.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Weekend Preview 9/10 November

FA Cup Final


Bangkok Glass v Buriram Utd (Thammasart Stadium)

Since both clubs cocooned into their present day forms, Bangkok Glass have never beaten Buriram in 11 previous attempts. In fact, the 0-0 draw between the pair in July was the only time that Buriram have failed to win this showdown after they'd won the previous ten.
Buriram have dominated the domestic cup competitions recently and another win on Sunday would be their third successive FA Cup success. Their last defeat in this tournament came back in 2010 against Army.
Also the Thunder Castle have already bagged the TPL crown this season and victories in the FA Cup and League Cup would see them sweep the domestic treble for the second time in three seasons.
On route to the final Buriram have seen off Chainat, Samut Songkhram, Singh Tarua and pleasingly for them Muangthong United in the semi final. Bangkok Glass eliminated Chonburi in the third round with a 1-0 win after extra time. The Glass Rabbits then followed that up with narrow victories at Trat and Bangkok FC before they demolished Police United 5-2 at the Rajamangala Stadium.
The final also has some added spice with Bangkok Glass coach, Attaphol Buspakom, coming up against his former side. Attaphol was surprising axed minutes after Buriram secured their place in the AFC Champions League last 16. A dispute with the club owner saw him depart Buriram and he was quickly snapped up by Bangkok Glass. I'm guessing there will have been a sour taste left in Attaphol's mouth and winning the FA Cup would be sweet revenge for him.

Division 2 Playoffs

Group A - Saturday

Kasetsart v Phitsanulok
Nara Utd v Luk Esan
Prachuap v Roi Et Utd

Group B - Sunday

Nakhon Nayok v Ang Thong
Paknampo NSRU v Udon Thani
Sukhothai v Chiang Mai

In Group A, Nara Utd have won their last two matches to hoist themselves into contention. They currently sit four points behind leaders Phitsanulok and Roi Et Utd and they'll be expected to overcome a Luk Esan side who haven't tasted success yet in five attempts. The leading duo have away games which they'll fancy taking three points from. Roi Et are at Prachuap and Phitsanulok visit Kasetsart.

Chiang Mai have beaten Sukhothai three times already this season and another win over the Fire Bats would leave them on the brink of promotion. The northern champions have a six point gap at the top with five games left to play. The other five teams are so closely bunched together with only three points separating the five of them. It's all to play for as Nakhon Nayok host Ang Thong while Paknampo NSRU welcome Udon Thani.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Sunday 3 November Review



BEC Tero 4-1 Army Utd
Buriram Utd 2-1 TOT
Chiang Rai Utd 4-2 Bangkok Utd
Muangthong Utd 2-2 Chainat
Osotspa Saraburi 1-4 Chonburi
Police Utd 1-2 Pattaya Utd
Samut Songkhram 2-2 Ratchaburi
Sisaket P-P Bangkok Glass
Songkhla Utd 2-1 Suphanburi

Despite winning 2-1 at Police United, it's Pattaya United that will drop to the first division for next season. The 2-2 draw between Samut Songkhram and Ratchaburi moved the pair on to 30 points which is one more than the Dolphins who finished on 29. Two quick goals from Obinna Darlington midway through the first period gave Pattaya a two goal lead before Murcy quickly replied grabbing the Crimson Cops a consolation.
In Samut Songkhram, the Raging Mackerels also took an early 2-0 lead but Ratchaburi fought back with two goals of their own after the interval. Both sides were content with a point each and the last ten minutes resembled the infamous Germany v Austria World Cup tie in 1982.

Buriram finished off the season unbeaten after they beat TOT 2-1. Kai Hirano and Suchao were on target for Buriram while Carmelo Gonzalez was dismissed 20 minutes from time for striking an opponent. Muangthong's 2-2 draw at home to Chainat meant that Buriram finished seven points ahead of their foes. The seven point gap in the final standings gives a more realistic reflection on how easy their title success has been.

Elsewhere there were 4-1 wins for Chonburi and BEC Tero. The Fire Dragons 4-1 win over Army snatched them a top 6 finish as they edged out a dejected Army into seventh.
Songkhla signed off the season beating Suphanburi 2-1 while Chiang Rai United's 4-2 over Bangkok United made it six wins out of seven for caretaker boss Anurak Srikerd. When he arrived, the Fighting Beetles were rock bottom. However, the Glass Rabbits coach guided them to a creditable 11th placed finish and surely the top brass at Chiang Rai should be pulling out all the stops to keep him at the club.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group B)

Ang Thong 2-2 Nakhon Nayok
Chiang Mai 2-1 Sukhothai
Udon Thani 2-0 Paknampo NSRU

Chiang Mai are running away with Group B after they beat Sukhothai 2-1 yesterday. The Lanna Tigers had to come from behind after Sukhothai had taken a surprise third minute lead. Machuca replied with a thirty yard stunner before Chatchai curled home a second half free kick to move Chiang Mai six points clear at the top of the group.

The rest of the teams are all clustered together with only three points separating the five of them. Second half goals courtesy of Thammawut and Yemi Joseph moved Udon Thani up to six points as they beat Paknampo NSRU 2-0.
Ang Thong staged a late recovery to snatch a point against Nakhon Nayok. With twenty minutes remaining, Nakhon Nayok were 2-0 up but a brace from Kampaeng earned Ang Thong a valuable point. The Rice Warriors are joint second with Sukhothai on seven points while Nakhon Nayok prop up the group with four points.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Saturday 2 November Review

Division 1

BBCU 2-2 Rayong Utd
Khon Kaen 1-3 Ayutthaya
Krabi 1-2 TTM
Nakhon Ratchasima 3-0 Phuket
PTT Rayong 2-2 Bangkok FC
Rayong FC 5-3 Nakhon Pathom Utd
Siam Navy 0-0 Trat
Singh Tarua 2-1 Air Force
Sriracha 2-1 Saraburi

So it's Singh Tarua and PTT Rayong who'll be joining Air Force in the TPL while it's Rayong FC who'll be accompanying their near neighbours, Rayong United, back to the regional leagues.

With Bangkok FC needing a win at PTT Rayong to claim promotion, things were seeming good at half time as they lead through Tawin's header. However, Kirati levelled from close range seconds after the restart and Weerayut broke the Bulligans' hearts seven minutes from time as his header snuck in at the near post. Lee Tuck netted from the spot in stoppage time but it was too late.

The draw between PTT Rayong and Bangkok FC allowed Singh Tarua to climb above PTT to finish in second place. Sarawut's 93rd minute winner ensured that Tarua beat Air force 2-1. Leandro had earlier netted from the penalty spot before Kittipoom levelled in the 86th minute. 

Going into yesterday's matches, Rayong FC knew they needed to win and then hope that either TTM or Sriracha hadn't. The Wild Horses did their part with a 5-3 win over Nakhon Pathom Utd but unfortunately for them TTM and Sriracha both triumphed. Sriracha were thankful to Chonburi loanees Ivan Boskovic and Irfan Bachdim while TTM's Yodsak was their savior with a winner eleven minutes from time at Krabi.
To rub salts into Rayong FC's wounds, they finished level with Khon Kaen on points but went down due to having an inferior H2H record. Had goal difference been the deciding factor, the Wild Horses would have stayed up.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group A)

Luk Esan 0-1 Nara Utd
Phitsanulok 1-0 Kasetsart
Roi Et Utd 1-0 Prachuap

After five matches, the big question now is can Nara Utd catch the runaway duo of Phitsanulok and Roi Et Utd. The pair moved onto 12 points after narrow 1-0 home victories. Diego's early goal was enough for Roi Et Utd while Sirichai's scrappy goal in the downpour won it for Phitsanulok.

Nara United's 1-0 win at Luk Esan keeps them four points off the pace at the top. Francis Dumaka was on the scoresheet again as his long range strike was the only goal of the contest.

Kasetsart, Luk Esan and Prachuap can basically start preparing for another season in the regional league

Singh Tarua 2-1 Air Force

A nervy Singh Tarua booked their place for the 2014 TPL with a 2-1 victory over a lackluster Air Force.

At half time, the signs weren't looking good for the majority of the bumper crowd inside the PAT Stadium. Bangkok FC were 1-0 up at PTT Rayong while Tarua couldn't penetrate the Air Force rearguard after bossing the play in the opening 45 minutes.

However, an equalizer for PTT in Rayong eased the tension before Singh Tarua were awarded an extremely soft penalty on the hour. A composed Leandro stepped up to slot past Warut in the Air Force goal.

The hosts continued to control the contest but with four minutes left a scuffed effort was clipped in by Kittipoom to silence the Klong Toei Army.

In the 93rd minute, Singh Tarua regained the lead when substitute Sarawut outjumped his marker to nod home Ali Diarra's cross.

Seconds later, the celebrations commenced as the referee blew the final whistle. That was the cue for fireworks and flares to be set off and several fans invaded the pitch to share their joy with the players. It was even touching to see the Tarua and Air Force supporters mutually bond at the end as they applauded each other. How different that would have been had Singh Tarua not been promoted!!

The duo now have just over three months to prepare for life in the top flight. Both clubs have a decent nucleus of talent in their squad but several new recruits will need to be brought in for them to survive.

Man of the match: Warut Metmusik - Safe handling

Friday, November 1, 2013

Matchday 34 Preview



BEC Tero v Army Utd
Buriram Utd v TOT
Chiang Rai Utd v Bangkok Utd
Muangthong Utd v Chainat
Osotspa Saraburi v Chonburi
Police Utd v Pattaya Utd
Samut Songkhram v Ratchaburi
Sisaket P-P Bangkok Glass
Songkhla Utd v Suphanburi

The final weekend in correspondence with the majority of the season will hardly set the pulses racing for the neutral observer. The only issue remaining with consequence is the filling of the solitary relegation place. Pattaya United are three points adrift at the bottom and they need to win at Police United and then rely on results elsewhere going in their favor if they are to remain in the TPL. Samut Songkhram, Ratchaburi and Songkhla Utd are all locked on 29 points and the best outcome for Pattaya would be for Ratchaburi to win the derby at Samut Songkhram. If Samut Songkhram lost and Pattaya won then the Dolphins would survive.

The TPL crown went to Buriram last weekend and I'm sure celebrations will be in full flow at the Thunder Castle when they host TOT. Even though it took Buriram until the penultimate weekend to clinch the title, the championship race was won at a canter for them. Second placed Muanghtong have played well below par this year yet they still managed to finish miles infront of Chonburi in third who themselves will finish well ahead of Suphanburi in fourth. From my own point of view, I'm hoping other challengers will emerge for the TPL title race in 2014 or we could end up the Celtic/Rangers scenario with Buriram and Muangthong continuing to dominate the TPL for the impending future.

Division 1


BBCU v Rayong Utd
Khon Kaen v Ayutthaya
Krabi v TTM
Nakhon Ratchasima v Phuket
PTT Rayong v Bangkok FC
Rayong FC v Nakhon Pathom Utd
Siam Navy v Trat
Singh Tarua v Air Force
Sriracha v Saraburi

In contrast, there is still plenty to play for in Division 1 at both ends of the league ladder. Six clubs enter the last round of fixtures with their destiny still undecided for 2014. By 8pm Saturday evening, four of them will be celebrating while two of them will be solemnly reflecting on their woes.
With Air Force already crowned champions, there are two remaining berths left to fill for the TPL promotion train. The PTT Rayong v Bangkok FC contest is simple to explain. If Bangkok FC win they go to the TPL whereas a win or draw for PTT Rayong will send them up. A loss for PTT could still see them promoted providing that Singh Tarua don't beat Air Force United.
The Klong Toei side are guaranteed promotion if they beat Air Force. If Tarua did lose, they'll still be promoted if Bangkok haven't won at PTT Rayong.

63 PTT Rayong
62 Singh Tarua
61 Bangkok FC

In the relegation scrap, it's one from Rayong FC, Sriracha and TTM who'll be accompanying Rayong United to the regional leagues next season.
Rayong FC currently occupy that unwanted placing and anything other than a home win against Nakhon Pathom Utd will see them relegated. However a win would keep them in the first division provided one of Sriracha or TTM hasn't won.
For Sriracha a victory keeps them up while a draw or a defeat would send them down if Rayong FC have beaten Saraburi.
A win for TTM would halt their second successive demotion. A point in Krabi  could be enough provided neither Sriracha or Rayong FC has won. TTM do have a better H2H over Sriracha so a TTM loss with a Rayong win and a Sriracha draw would send the Blue Marlins down.

35 TTM
34 Sriracha
33 Rayong FC

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group A - Saturday)

Luk Esan v Nara Utd
Phitsanulok v Kasetsart
Roi Et Utd v Prachuap

(Group B - Sunday)

Ang Thong v Nakhon Nayok
Chiang Mai v Sukhothai
Udon Thani v Paknampo NSRU

The playoffs approach the halfway stage as we've reached Matchday 5. This weekend's fixtures will then be reversed next time out as the runners turn towards home.

In Group A three home victories would open up a seven point gap at the top for Roi Et Utd and Phitsanulok. The closest challengers to the top pair, Kasetsart and Nara Utd, are four points behind and six points over the next two games are probably required if they are to be taken seriously as promotion candidates.

In the regional league northern section, Chiang Mai completed the double over Sukhothai. A repeat of that over the next two games would almost ensure that the 700th Anniversary Stadium will be welcoming Nakhon Ratchasima and BBCU next season.
The rest of the pack is tight and the double headers between Ang Thong v Nakhon Nayok and Udon Thani v NSRU will make or break the prospects' final outcome.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Sunday 27 October Review


Army Utd 1-0 Osotspa Saraburi
Bangkok Glass 2-1 Chainat
Bangkok Utd 0-2 Buriram Utd
BEC Tero 2-2 Muangthong United
Chonburi 4-0 Samut Songkhram
Pattaya Utd 0-1 Chiang Rai Utd
Ratchaburi 1-0 Police Utd
TOT 1-0 Songkhla Utd

Congratulations go to Buriram Utd after their 2-0 success at Bangkok United saw them crowned 2013 TPL champions. Second half goals from Jirawat and Osmar helped them over the line and maintained their unbeaten record this season. Their title victory has been fully merited and only the staunchest of MTU's supporters would beg to differ. While Buriram were toasting their success, Muangthong's fading title bid petered out in Minburi as they drew 2-2 with BEC Tero.

In the relegation scrap, it now seems increasingly likely that it will be Pattaya United taking the drop to Division 1. The reason for their 1-0 loss at home to Chiang Rai Utd was firmly pinned on the shoulders of the referee by the home supporters and the match officials were held in the stadium for two hours as disgruntled fans bayed for his blood.
The win for Chiang Rai keeps them up as did 1-0 wins for TOT and Ratchaburi. Chonburi finally ended a disappointing run of results against Samut Songkhram with a 4-0 victory.
After working out various head-to-head permutations, it appears that Samut Songkhram are the only side that Pattaya can overtake. The Raging Mackerels host neighbors Ratchaburi next Sunday knowing that one point will secure their future while Pattaya must win at Police Utd and hope that Ratchaburi can do them a massive favour.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group A)

Kasetsart 2-1 Prachuap
Luk Isan 0-1 Roi Et Utd
Nara Utd 3-1 Phitsanulok

Roi Et Utd moved to the top of the group with a tight 1-0 victory at Luk Esan. Erivaldo got the all important goal for the White Squirrels.
Phitsanulok dropped to second after they suffered a 3-1 loss at Nara United. The Kolaks can be thankful to their foreign contingent with Dumaka Francis netting twice and Njobato Abel grabbing the other. Nara's first win moves them onto five points, four behind the top two, and they are joined by Kasetsart after they beat Prachuap 2-1. Jakkaphan's superb volley won the Emerald Nagas their first points and keeps their distant promotion dreams simmering. Things appear bleak for Prachuap and Luk Esan with only two points apiece.

TOT 1-0 Songkhla Utd

TOT made certain of their TPL future for another season with a 1-0 victory over a toothless Songkhla.

From the outset, the team from the south rarely threatened and they can be thankful that goalkeeper Jonathan Matijas produced a fine performance to keep them in the contest.

The Frenchman's first sublime save came in the 8th minute when he tipped a curling Prakit left footer over the bar.

However, a couple of minutes later he was picking the ball out of his net after Juninho slotted home from 16 yards to finish of Ekkachai's cutback.

As the half progressed, Songkhla began to probe but it was to little effect while Juninho's sweet volley on the turn flew inches over the bar.

Seconds after the restart, Matijas again made another fingertip save this time denying Panomkorn's drive from the edge of the box.

TOT continued to dominate and twice defenders cleared goal bound efforts off the line. Matijas also had to be alert on a couple of occasions dashing out of his box to sweep up impending danger.

The closest Songkhla came to scoring came six minutes from time after Weera misjudged a corner. A mad scramble ensured in the box before Bas Savage ushered the ball to safety.

That was all the Fighting Bulls could muster and at the final whistle the majority of the 756 in attendance celebrated as TOT's TPL status was secured for at least another 12 months.

Overall it was a fully merited win for TOT. Songkhla were really poor offensively and they can be thankful that only one team will be relegated this season.

Man of the Match: Jonathan Matijas - Kept his side in the contest

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Saturday 26 October Review

Division 1

Air Force 1-1 Khon Kaen
Ayutthaya 2-1 Siam Navy
Bangkok FC 3-1 Krabi
Nakhon Pathom 2-3 Singh Tarua
Nakhon Ratchasima 3-2 PTT Rayong
Phuket 0-1 Rayong Utd
Saraburi 2-1 BBCU
Trat 2-1 Sriracha
TTM 2-3 Rayong FC

Results on the penultimate Saturday have set things up nicely for the final day showdown at both ends of the table.
Nakhon Ratchasima's 3-2 victory over PTT Rayong denied the Oil Millionaires promotion. Goals from Dandrai and Prompong gave the Swatcats a 2-0 lead before Pipat pulled a goal back. Prompong restored the two goal advantage before the break while Pipat's second of the day wasn't enough to haul PTT back into the contest.
PTT Rayong will face Bangkok FC in a winner takes all contest next weekend. The Iron Bulls were minutes away from being eliminated from the TPL promotion race but two late goals at home to Krabi gave them a 3-1 victory.
Singh Tarua are sandwiched inbetween the pair and a win at home to Air Force in their last match would ensure them TPL football in 2014 regardless of what happens at the PTT Stadium. Yesterday, they secured their first away win since June with a 3-2 win at Nakhon Pathom. On form Patrick Reichelt added another goal to his recent collection and the ever reliable Leandro weighed in with another brace to ensure the three points headed back to Khlong Toei.

Air Force and Khon Kaen would both have been satisfied with their 1-1 draw at the Thupathemi. The point sealed the championship for the Airmen while the draw secures Khon Kaen's first division status for another 12 months.

Rayong FC are one game away from performing the great escape after they won 3-2 at TTM yesterday. A looping free kick from Chanatphol gave Rayong FC the lead shortly after the interval but it was cancelled out 20 minutes later by Lassana Sidibe. However, the Wild Horses fired back with goals from Anukorn and Suriyakan before TTM grabbed a second right at the death.
The outcome of Rayong's success means it's a three way battle between themselves, TTM and Sriracha for that last relegation place. Ivan Boskovic's spectacular volley appeared to have earned Sriracha an important point but Na Kwang Hyun's 83rd minute header denied them a share of the spoils.
The Blue Marlins host Saraburi in their final game while Rayong FC welcome Nakhon Pathom Utd. TTM make the long journey to Krabi.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group B)

Chiang Mai 3-0 Udon Thani
Nakhon Nayok 1-0 Paknampo NSRU
Sukhothai 2-3 Ang Thong

Chiang Mai asserted their authority on Group B with a comfortable 3-0 win over Udon Thani. Arnon opened the scoring after half time before an own goal and a Chatchai shot wrapped up a 3-0 win to move the Lanna Tigers three points clear at the top.
Wins for Ang Thong and Nakhon Nayok shook up the pack to keep the race for the second promotion place interesting. Ang Thong produced the comeback of the day after a double from Sirisak had fired Sukhothai into a 2-0 lead. A couple of headers brought the Rice Warriors back into the contest before Tameezee's low shot won the match.
Tomi Bolarinwa was on target as Nakhon Nayok finally kick started their playoff campaign. The 1-0 home win over NSRU brought them their first points and leaves Nakhon Nayok only four points behind second placed Sukhothai.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Bangkok FC 3-1 Krabi

Two late goals kept Bangkok FC's TPL dreams alive as they beat Krabi 3-1. With minutes remaining, the Iron Bulls were being held 1-1 but a debatable penalty and subsequent sending off were to be the talking points of the day.

After last week's 3-0 loss at Rayong FC, Bangkok's promotion fate was out of their own hands and there was a sombre end of season feel to the contest as the match kicked off.

It was an even start to the game although it was Krabi who had the early chances with Anuwit and Somkid coming close.

The hosts first real effort came midway through the half when Tawin's drilled left foot shot across goal forced Anusorn to block with his foot.

The same duo were involved three minutes later when the goalkeeper rather recklessly brought down the Bangkok number 22 leaving the referee with the simple decision of awarding a penalty.

Lee Tuck took his trademark stuttered run up for the spot kick but Anusorn dived the right way to block his shot. However, Meedech was the swiftest to react and he knocked in the rebound to give the hosts the lead.

Inspired substitution
Krabi were struggling to get back into the match and they hooked Tanat for John Mary minutes before the break. The former Buriram striker made an instant impact as his rasping shot from the edge of the box landed in the back of the net.

After the interval, Bangkok were applying most of the pressure while the team from the south were looking dangerous on the break.

Tawin's header from a long throw went just over the bar and an Olof Watson shot hit the side netting as the hosts pressed. At the other end, John Mary couldn't connect properly as his shot 18 yards was saved by Worawut and Anuwit blazed over following a quick break.

The Bulligans thought they'd taken the lead shortly after Sam Danquah's arrival but his teasing cross was knocked tantalisingly back across the goal by Watson with the Krabi keeper stood rooted to the spot.

With time running out, Bangkok FC were awarded a debatable penalty. Whether or not Adisak clipped Jutarong is open to discussion, but the reaction of the Krabi players was rather childish. In the rugby scrum that swarmed the man in the middle afterwards, it appeared a slap was aimed at his head and Onuora was shown a red card. After about 15 minutes of heated argument on the touchline, the red card was given to Thaweephong after he appeared to own up. Lee Tuck could finally take his second spot kick off the afternoon and this time the Englishman made no mistake as he sent Anusorn the wrong way to make it 2-1.

Moments later, Bangkok should have had a third penalty but the referee decided to hedge his bets and awarded a free kick on the edge of the box instead. Tuck then gently rolled the ball to Watson and the Swede rifled home into the bottom corner to secure the 3-1 win.

There was double joy at the final whistle for the Bang Mot side when the news filtered through that Nakhon Ratchasima had beaten PTT Rayong. Next week PTT Rayong host Bangkok FC and a win for the Iron Bulls would send them into the TPL. 

Friday, October 25, 2013

Matchday 33 Preview



Army Utd v Osotspa Saraburi
Bangkok Glass v Chainat
Bangkok Utd v Buriram Utd
BEC Tero v Muangthong United
Chonburi v Samut Songkhram
Pattaya Utd v Chiang Rai Utd
Ratchaburi v Police Utd
Suphanburi P-P Sisaket
TOT v Songkhla Utd

First of all, apologies for the lack of updates during the last fortnight. I've just arrived back in Thailand so I'll briefly explain this penultimate weekend's scenarios.

All of the fixtures will start simultaneously in the TPL at 6pm on Sunday. A win for Buriram at Bangkok Utd would confirm them as 2013 champions. A draw or a loss could also claim the title provided Muangthong don't better Buriram's result. With a superior H2H record for the current leaders, Muangthong would need to gain four more points than Buriram to retain their championship.
Below are the current point standings:

72 Buriram Utd
69 Muangthong Utd

At the foot of the table it's so tight with seven sides still in the relegation mix. There are two massive games involving four of the teams in the battle. The winners between TOT v Songkhla would guarantee survival while Chiang Rai could do likewise if they win at Pattaya Utd. A loss would leave the Dolphins in deep trouble and they'd need to pray that TOT and Samut Songkhram lose and that Ratchaburi don't win to keep themselves alive for the final weekend (On H2H, Pattaya would lose to TOT and R'buri but beat Samut Songkhram).
On paper, Samut Songkhram should be second favorites at Chonburi but they might feel slightly self-assured after winning their last three meetings against the Sharks. Ratchaburi will be eager to beat Police Utd at home before their final day derby clash away to Samut Songkhram.
Bangkok Utd aren't mathematically safe, but it would take a unlikely series of results to see them demoted. 

31 Bangkok Utd
29 Samut Songkham
29 Songkhla Utd
28 Chiang Rai Utd
28 TOT
26 Ratchaburi
26 Pattaya Utd

Division 1


Air Force v Khon Kaen
Ayutthaya v Siam Navy
Bangkok FC v Krabi
Nakhon Pathom v Singh Tarua
Nakhon Ratchasima v PTT Rayong
Phuket v Rayong Utd
Saraburi v BBCU
Trat v Sriracha
TTM v Rayong FC

All of this round's fixtures will be played concurrently at 5pm on Saturday.
Air Force are all ready assured promotion to the TPL and a minimum of a point at home to lowly Khon Kaen would land them the Division 1 title.
A win for PTT Rayong in Nakhon Ratchasima would also reserve their TPL seat for 2014. However a loss coupled with victories for Singh Tarua and Bangkok FC would make the final matchday very interesting. PTT host Bangkok FC while Tarua welcome TPL bound Air Force next weekend.
It would all be over though on Saturday if Bangkok FC fail to win and Singh Tarua are victorious at Nakhon Pathom (Tarua have the better H2H over Bangkok FC).

68 Air Force
63 PTT Rayong
59 Singh Tarua
58 Bangkok FC

If TTM don't lose to Rayong FC on Saturday then that would conclude the first division's relegation issues. Nonetheless, a success for the Wild Horses would drag TTM into a final day showdown with possibly Khon Kaen and Sriracha if their weekend outings prove fruitless. (Sriracha have better H2H with Rayong FC)

35 TTM
35 Khon Kaen
34 Sriracha
30 Rayong FC
23 Rayong Utd

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group A - Sunday)

Kasetsart v Prachuap
Luk Isan v Roi Et Utd
Nara Utd v Phitsanulok

Already at this early stage, it would take a brave punter to back against Phitsanulok and Roi Et Utd moving on up to Division 1. The other four sides have yet to taste victory after three previous attempts.

9 Phitsanulok
6 Roi Et Utd
2 Prachuap
2 Nara Utd
2 Kasetsart
2 Luk Esan

(Group B - Saturday)

Chiang Mai v Udon Thani
Nakhon Nayok v Paknampo NSRU
Sukhothai v Ang Thong

This group is a bit tighter than Group A. Home wins for Chiang Mai and Sukhothai this round would move the duo firmly into the driving seat. Paknampo NSRU visit a Nakhon Nayok side that has yet to break their duck and three points are essential to keep NSRU in the hunt.

7 Sukhothai
7 Chiang Mai
5 Paknampo NSRU
3 Udon Thani
3 Ang Thong
0 Nakhon Nayok

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Upcoming Fixtures

Wednesday 9 October


Samut Songkhram 0-2 Chiang Rai Utd (Last 25 minutes were played at a neutral venue)

Thursday 10 October

International Friendly

Thailand v Bahrain

Friday 11 October


TOT v Suphanburi

Saturday 12 October

Div 2 (Group A)

Luk Esan v Prachuap
Nara Utd v Kasetsart
Phitsanulok v Roi Et Utd

Sunday 13 October

Div 2 (Group B)

Ang Thong v Udon Thani
Chiang Mai v Paknampo NSRU
Sukhothai v Nakhon Nayok

Tuesday 15 October

AFC Asian Cup Qualifying

Iran v Thailand

Saturday 19 October


Chainat v Suphanburi
Osotspa Saraburi v BEC Tero
Police Utd v Chonburi
Songkhla v Bangkok Utd

Div 1

BBCU v Trat
Krabi v Nakhon Ratchasima
PTT Rayong v Phuket
Rayong Utd v Saraburi
Sriracha v Ayutthaya

Div 2 (Group B)

Ang Thong v Chiang Mai
Paknampo NSRU v Sukhothai
Udon Thani v Nakhon Nayok

Sunday 20 October


Buriram Utd v Pattaya Utd
Chiang Rai Utd v Ratchaburi
Muangthong Utd v Bangkok Glass
Samut Songkhram v Army Utd
Sisaket P-P TOT

Div 1

Air Force v Siam Navy
Khon Kaen v Nakhon Pathom Utd
Rayong FC v Bangkok FC
Singh Tarua v TTM

Div 2 (Group A)

Pitsanulok v Luk Esan
Prachuap v Nara Utd
Roi Et Utd v Kasetsart

I'm going to be on holiday for the next two weeks, so I won't have time to write anything. I'll be back in time for the concluding two weeks of the TPL & Div 1 season.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Sunday 6 October Review


Army Utd 2-2 Police Utd
BEC Tero 1-2 Samut Songkhram
Chonburi 3-0 Chiang Rai Utd
Pattaya Utd 2-2 Songkhla Utd
Ratchaburi 2-2 Buriram Utd

Kai Hirano's late goal rescued a point for Buriram United at Ratchaburi. The Dragons obviously hadn't read the script as they took a 2-0 first half lead. Theeraton's sweet chip reduced the deficit before Hirano struck from close range. The point leaves Buriram three in front of Muangthong with three to play.

At the other end, Chiang Rai United are cut four points adrift after their 3-0 loss at Chonburi yesterday. Thiago Cunha headed a second half brace before CRU's Uilian was ordered off 15 minutes from time. Therdsak squeezed one home with virtually the last kick of the match to complete the 3-0 victory.

The two sides closest to Chiang Rai's reach are Pattaya United and Ratchaburi, As mentioned previously, Ratchaburi earned a creditable 2-2 draw with league leaders Buriram United. Pattaya drew 2-2 as well, but they'll have been disappointed not to have beaten an out of sorts Songkhla United in Nong Prue.

Samut Songkhram moved six points from danger after their 2-1 win over BEC Tero. The match was played at Thammasart University due to flooding at Tero's Minburi venue. The Crazy Mackerels came from behind with Guy Hubert scoring one before setting up Phuvanart for the winner.

It also ended 2-2 between Army United and Police United. The match was played in squelching conditions and the draw basically rules out Army's bid for a top 4 finish

Division 1

Air Force 4-1 Sriracha
Nakhon Pathom Utd 0-3 Siam Navy
Nakhon Ratchasima 5-2 Rayong FC
Phuket 1-0 Saraburi

Air Force's 4-1 win over Sriracha leaves them requiring just one more point to reclaim their place in the top flight. The Airmen had their breath taken away as Berlin netted a 4th minute goal for Sriracha. However, close range goals from Supakorn and Anon had Air Force back in control before half time. Jun Uruno and Kouassi got into the act after the interval to make it 4-1. Sriracha's Aumpai was later sent off for striking an AF player in the chest.

Rayong FC's brief Division 1 tenure looks to be coming to an end after they suffered a 5-2 defeat in Korat. The Wild Horses are five points from safety and their remaining three fixtures are Bangkok FC (H), TTM (A) and Nakhon Pathom (H). The result also confirmed that Ayutthaya and TTM are staying up after the pair have endured relegation worries for the majority of the season.

The outcome of the other two matches had no bearing on matters at either end of the table.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group B)
Nakhon Nayok 0-1 Chiang Mai
Paknampo NSRU 1-0 Ang Thong
Sukhothai 2-0 Udon Thani

Arnon slipped the ball under the keeper in the fifth minute to give Chiang Mai a 1-0 win at Nakhon Nayok. The MTU feeder club had chances to level but it was Chiang Mai who held out for the three points.
Sirisak Musbungo was Sukhothai's hero of the day as his double sunk Udon Thani. The 2-0 win for the Fire Bats means they'll enter matchday 2 as the group's early pace setters.
Ang Thong's keeper was left with egg on his face when the ball bounced off his backside into the net after he'd woefully attempted to punch away a cross. His error cost his side the game as they lost 1-0 at Paknampo NSRU.

Army Utd 2-2 Police Utd

The heavens opened yet again at the Royal Thai Stadium as it finished 2-2.

Aron da Silva twisted and turned in the box before firing home the opening goal in the 20th minute.

It had been relatively dry until then but then it started to piss down and it was becoming increasingly likely that the game would be halted.

It wasn't, and Police drew level ten minutes before the interval when Murcy got a faint touch to knock an inswinging corner delivery over the line.

Lindemann's shot from 16 yards restored the lead in the 59th minute but the away side levelled once more when Paitoon took advantage of a goalkeeping error to stab the ball over the line.

Overall I thought Police United were worthy for a point. The game was entertaining enough but for me it wasn't one for the purists due to the downpour.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Saturday 5 October Review


Osotspa Saraburi 1-3 Muangthong Utd
Suphanburi 1-0 Bangkok Glass
TOT 2-1 Chainat

TOT claimed a much needed three points to end an appalling sequence of results that saw them plummet towards the bottom of the table. Juninho's 30 yard screamer midway through the first half gave TOT the lead before Ekkachai doubled it shortly after the break. Noppol was given a second yellow card late on to reduce Chainat to ten yet Sumanya volleyed home from eight yards for a consolation.

Teerasil was the toast of Muangthong as his hat-trick helped his side win 3-1 at Osotspa Saraburi. His first in the 25th minute was a gift as the Osotspa keeper made a horrendous hash at clearing a backpass. Osotspa were back on level terms before the interval courtesy of Komenan's glancing header. Mui got his second of the day from close range in the 70th minute before he completed his treble in injury time with a fine solo goal.

A crowd of 21,059 watched as Dragan Boskovic's 51st minute penalty separated Suphanburi and Bangkok Glass. The 1-0 win for Suphanburi lifted them above their opponents into fourth place. They are now one point ahead of BG and they have a game in hand.

Division 1

Ayutthaya 2-0 BBCU
Bangkok FC 2-1 Singh Tarua
PTT Rayong 2-0 Krabi
Trat 5-2 Rayong Utd
TTM 2-2 Khon Kaen

Bangkok FC won the much anticipated promotion clash beating Singh Tarua 2-1. Tawin netted twice to ensure that the Iron Bulls climbed over Tarua into third place.
PTT Rayong's 2-0 win over Krabi gives them a four point buffer over fourth place and they need five points from their remaining three matches to claim a TPL berth for 2014. Outtara's 70th minute opener squelched its way through the puddles before Kirati's header wrapped up the points eight minutes from time.

At the bottom, results yesterday gave Rayong United their last rights as only a minor miracle would save them now. The Elephant Warriors would need to win their last three matches and hope that Khon Kaen lost theirs. Also they'd need to hope that Rayong FC didn't pick up more than five points too. Khon Kaen grabbed a point at TTM to move onto 32 which is five points ahead of second bottom Rayong FC.

Phil Stubbins has managed to halt Ayutthaya's slide down the table and yesterday's 2-0 win over BBCU should be enough to move them over the safety line. Sorasak and Nattakorn were on target for the Ancient Warriors.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group A)
Kasetsart 0-0 Luk Esan
Nara Utd 0-2 Roi Et Utd
Prachuap 1-2 Phitsanulok

Even at this early stage, it already appears that Roi Et United and Phitsanulok are the teams to catch in Group A.
Two second half goals helped Roi Et negotiate a tricky encounter at Nara United. Erivaldo got the first from the spot in 68th minute before Jose Munoz added a second deep into injury time.
Jung Su Oh scored a late winner as Phitsanulok won 2-1 at Prachuap. Saksit had earlier sliced the ball into his own net to give the visitors a first half lead. Khampee did equalize via a penalty kick but it was the Violet Army who were celebrating at the final whistle.
At Kasetsart, the woodwork was to deny both sides as the hosts fought out a 0-0 draw with Luk Esan. Both sides had plenty of chances but they'll need to be more clinical in front of goal if they are to catch Roi Et and Phitsanulok.

Bangkok FC 2-1 Singh Tarua

A Tawin double gave the advantage to Bangkok FC in the battle for the third promotion place as the Iron Bulls beat Singh Tarua 2-1.

The away side had their noses infront coming into the game and it was they who set up with a cagey 4-5-1 formation. The opening half hour was fairly devoid of any action yet it was the hosts, playing with a more traditional 4-4-2 formation, who were more intent on making the breakthrew.

The opening goal came in the 32nd minute when Tawin neatly cut inside his marker and fired home from inside the box. 

Tarua made a double substitution at half time in a bid to bolster their attacking options. However, it was Bangkok FC who doubled the lead in the 57th minute when Lee Tuck slithered his way along the byline before teeing up Tawin to shoot home at the near post.

Within two minutes, Tarua were back in the game after Ali Diarra headed home a Leandro cross after the Brazilain's initial corner had returned to him.

The closest Tarua came to equalizing was a Sarawut header in the 66th minute which landed on the roof of the net.

Unfortunately for the 2,000 plus Tarua contingent, there was to be no fightback as Bangkok FC whittled down the clock fairly easily with a combination of stubborn defending and timewasting. The visitors ran out of ideas and resorted to hitting aimless high balls up to Leandro and Christen.

The 2-1 victory means that Bangkok FC move two points clear of Singh Tarua with three games to play. They only positive from today for Tarua is that they'd hold the better head-to-head record if both teams finished level on points. Bangkok have Rayong FC (A), Krabi (H) and PTT Rayong to finish. Singh Tarua now need to beat TTM (H), Nakhon Pathom (A) and Air Force (H) and hope that the Bang Mod side drop points in one of their three remaining fixtures.

Disappointingly, or somewhat predictably, the end of the game was marred with crowd trouble as both sets of fans were supposed to be paying respect to each other in the traditional Thai way.

Man of the Match - Tawin Butsombat: Match winning double

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Matchday 31 & Div 2 Playoffs Preview


Bangkok United P-P Sisaket
Osotspa Saraburi v Muangthong Utd
Suphanburi v Bangkok Glass
TOT v Chainat

Army Utd v Police Utd
BEC Tero v Samut Songkhram
Chonburi v Chiang Rai Utd
Pattaya Utd v Songkhla Utd
Ratchaburi v Buriram Utd

Back to back wins for Chiang Rai United have drawn TOT, Samut Songkhram, Patttaya Utd and Ratchaburi back into the relegation scramble. For TOT, they face a massive week with two home matches. Chainat come calling on Saturday while Suphanburi are at the TOT Stadium on the following Friday. The Telephone Boys need to end a barren run which has seen them collect only one point from the last 33 available.
Ratchaburi get an immediate dress rehearsal for next month's league cup final with the visit of Buriram United to their home. Pattaya look good for three points as they entertain an ailing Songkhla United while Samut Songkhram would take a point at Tero if it were offered to them now. Likewise, Chiang Rai Utd have a tough assignment at Chonburi and a draw would be seen as an acceptable outcome.

Elsewhere, Muangthong make the trip up to Osotspa Saraburi and a win would ensure them a second placed finish. Suphanburi and Bangkok Glass are battling it out for fourth place and the winner of this will be in pole position to claim a top 4 finish. If Suphanburi lose, they would drop to sixth if Army United can triumph over Police United.

Division 1

Ayutthaya v BBCU
Bangkok FC v Singh Tarua
PTT Rayong v Krabi
Trat v Rayong Utd
TTM v Khon Kaen

Air Force v Sriracha
Nakhon Pathom Utd v Siam Navy
Nakhon Ratchasima v Rayong FC
Phuket v Saraburi

The much anticipated clash between Bangkok FC and Singh Tarua won't decide who goes up, but it will certainly have a large bearing on the final standings. It's definitely more important for Bangkok FC to collect three points than it is for Tarua. A draw might satisfy the Klong Toei side as it would leave them a point ahead of the Irons Bulls with three to play and they'd have a superior head-to-head record should they finish level on points.
A loss for Bangkok FC coupled with an Air Force home win would confirm Air Force's ascendancy into the TPL. PTT Rayong in second will move a step closer to the top flight provided they dispatch of Krabi.

Rayong United's days in the first division are numbered and they would be officially relegated if they lost at Trat and Khon Kaen won at TTM.
Rayong FC need to get over their midweek cup disappointment as they visit the Esan region for the second time in five days. The travel to Nakhon Ratchasima who themselves were knocked out of the cup despite dominating their tie against Ratchaburi.
Two wins and three draws since the arrival of Phil Stubbins at Ayutthaya has eased relegation fears. A win over BBCU would leave them within inches of safety.

Division 2 Playoffs

(Group A - Saturday)
Kasetsart v Luk Esan
Nara Utd v Roi Et Utd
Prachuap v Phitsanulok

(Group B - Sunday)
Nakhon Nayok v Chiang Mai
Paknampo NSRU v Ang Thong
Sukhothai v Udon Thani

The pinnacle of the regional league season begins as the playoffs kick off this weekend. Four sides, the top two from each group, will be promoted to the first division for 2014.
Roi Et Utd will start Group A as favorites but their opening match couldn't be any tougher. They travel to Nara United where they'll be playing in a hostile atmosphere. A point for the White Squirrels would probably be a satisfactory return.
Kasetsart won their last three league games to make it into the playoffs and they kick off against Police United's youth/feeder club, Luk Esan. The Thammasart based club won the Central East region but it's a game that Kasetsart must win if they aim to climb up the leagues.
Prachuap were the front runners for the majority of the season in Central West but towards the end of the season they took their foot of the pedal with only two wins in their last seven matches. Their opponents Phitsanulok are currently 12 unbeaten and will be full of confidence. Apparently, they have the biggest squad budget out of all the teams in this section.

In my opinion, Group B is probably the tougher one to get out of with several strong sides in this pool. Chiang Mai will no doubt be pulling in most of the headlines and they start their campaign at Nakhon Nayok. Similar to Luk Esan, NN were floundering in the regional leagues until a partnership was made with a TPL side. The club they are tied up with are Muangthong United and they can boast a player rota which includes Jorrin John, Tomi Bolarinwa, Matej Rapnik and several Thai youth players from the Nonthaburi club.
Central West winners Ang Thong have been widely tipped to do well. The Rice Warriors finished their league campaign strongly with five successive wins scoring 16 goals in the process. They travel to another much fancied side, Paknampo NSRU.
Sukhothai made it through to the playoffs after negotiating a playoff with Chumpon. They welcome an Udon Thani side who seem to enjoy playing sides beginning with the letter 'S.' They accounted for the scalps of Singh Tarua, Samut Songkhram and Songkhla United in the league cup before they were eventually ousted by Buriram United in the last 8.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

League Cup Semi Final Results

Buriram Utd 5-0 Rayong FC (Agg 5-1)
Nakhon Ratchasima 1-1 Ratchaburi (Agg 1-1 Ratchaburi win on away goals)

It's going to be a repeat of last year's final after Buriram and Ratchaburi both negotiated their semi finals with contrasting performances.

Any thoughts of Buriram not making it to their fourth successive league cup final were quickly erased as first half goals from Hirano, Osmar (penalty), and Anawin null and voided Rayong's 1-0 first leg advantage. Suchao and Jesus Berrocal added second half goals to nail Buriram's place in the final.

In Nakhon Ratchasima, Jhon Obregon's 9th minute breakaway goal for Ratchaburi sent them through to the final. Both sides were reduced to ten men shortly before the interval when Farid and Pralong were dismissed after a clash on the deck.
The second half was one way traffic as Korat battered Ratchaburi. In the 63rd minute, Nakhon Ratchasima equalized when the unfortunate diving Ratchaburi keeper, Chayut, knocked in Chivuta's shot with his head after it had rebounded off the post.
From the remaining 30 minutes, Ratchaburi battened down the hatches as Kato (twice), Chivuta, Yutana (twice) all had great chances to score the winning goal.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Sunday 29 September Review


Buriram 2-1 Chonburi
Chiang Rai Utd 2-1 Army Utd
Muangthong Utd 3-1 Suphanburi
Police Utd 1-2 BEC Tero
Songkhla Utd 2-2 Ratchaburi

Buriram capitalized on some slapstick defending to beat Chonburi 2-1. Theerathorn and Carmelo were the benefactors as Chonburi gifted them two goals within four minutes midway through the second half. Thiago headed a consolation in injury time but by then the damage had been done.

Muangthong United maintained their faint championship bid with a 3-1 win over Suphanburi. Chainarong scored from close range in the 19th minute but the lead was cancelled out as Boskovic equalized from the spot. Teerasil set up Mario midway through the second half to restore the lead and the Thai striker then laid one on for Sarawut to give the Kirins a 3-1 victory.

Army United players and fans were left fuming after a host of questionable decisions by the match officials in their 2-1 defeat at Chiang Rai United. It all started so brightly when Aron da Silva's deflected shot gave Army a 16th minute lead. CRU were given a soft penalty before the break but it was saved by Todsaporn. Choklap levelled in the 72nd minute before Army had a goal chalked off for offside ten minutes afterwards. Chiang Rai's winning goal had a slice of luck to it three minutes later when a mishit attempt landed kindly for Narul to tap in. Army protested that it was offside but having watched the replay half a dozen times, I'd say the officials called it correctly. Tanakorn was sent off in injury time for stamping on his opponent. The win for the Fighting Beetles moves them to within three points of TOT, Pattaya, Samut Songkhram and Ratchaburi.

The Dragons took the lead twice through Douglas at Songkhla but they were pegged back on both occasions with Darko scoring a free kick and Manop scrambling a goal in the dying minutes.

The game at the Thammasart came to life late on when Issac Honey fired home with 12 minutes left. That lead was doubled on the stroke of full time when Rangsan netted a penalty kick after Tero were awarded a ridiculously soft penalty. Pedrinho pulled one back seconds later to reduce the deficit to 2-1.

Division 1

BBCU 0-2 Air Force
Rayong Utd 1-2 Ayutthaya
Saraburi 1-3 Trat
Sriracha 0-0 Nakhon Pathom Utd

A Kouassi Yao Hermann double at BBCU has Air Force on the brink of returning to the top flight. The Airmen are five points clear of  PTT Rayong in second position and seven in front of fourth placed Bangkok FC

At the bottom, Rayong United are as good as relegated after they lost 2-1 in a rain soaked contest to Ayutthaya. Durosinmi gave the Ancient Warriors the lead in the 54th minute before an own goal three minutes later made it 2-0. Rayong United did grab a late goal but the loss leaves them eight points from safety with four left to play.

In the other matches, Trat won 3-1 at Saraburi while it finished goalless between Sriracha and Nakhon Pathom United.

BBCU 0-2 Air Force

Air Force more or less stamped their ticket for the 2014 TPL season with a comfortable 2-0 victory over BBCU.

A free kick into the box from Thongchai caused BBCU immediate problems before it was booted to safety by Nantapol.

The host's only real effort of the half came in the 12th minute when an angled shot from Pichit went straight into the arms of Samuel P Cunningham.

Air Force were in control during the first period and they opened the scoring just after the 30 minute mark. Kouassi broke through the BBCU back line and held the ball up before cutting back to Oiboh. The Nigerian drilled his shot onto the post and the rebound was then crossed by Supphakorn for Kouassi to head home.

Kouassi got his second goal of the match in the 53rd minute when he raced through to net after the powerful Supphakorn had slipped him in.

Three minutes later, Julius Oiboh almost added a third but couldn't get his laces through Supphakorn's low cross from the right.

BBCU never looked like recovering and the closest the came to scoring was from a rasping Moussa Sylla 25yard shot that was deflected over.

In the dying minutes, Kouassi almost completed his hat-trick. Yet again, a through ball set him up but his shot rolled paifully across the goal. All credit must be given to Kouassi for staying on his feet after a challenge from the BBCU keeper.

Throughout the season I've been critical of Air Force's promotion credentials but after tonight I must recognize them as potentially worthy Division 1 champions. They have the best keeper in the league in Samuel Cunningham and their robust defence is well organized by Jarulsak. Up front, the lighting pace of Kouassi and Oiboh will always cause problems and Zezinando is the modern day box-to-box footballer.
BBCU deserved nothing out of the match and they played like a side that was just going through the motions. 

Man of the Match: Kouassi Yao Hermann

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Saturday 28 September Review


Bangkok Glass 5-1 TOT
Chainat 2-1 Bangkok Utd
Samut Songkhram 0-0 Osotspa Saraburi
Sisaket P-P Pattaya Utd

Supporters of TOT must be having sleepless nights as their plummet continued with a 5-1 hammering at Bangkok Glass yesterday. A Leesaw double had the FA cup finalists firmly in control by the 14th minute. The Telephone Boys kept it respectable until just after the hour before they caved in to goals from Suphasek, Saruta and Tanasit. Phudit's turn and shot was merely a consolation for TOT. It seems their best chance of survival now would be the failing of Chiang Rai United. The club from the north are six points behind TOT with two games in hand. If they finished level on points, TOT would survive due to having a superior head-to-head over CRU.

Samut Songkhram's point from their uninspiring 0-0 draw with Osotspa moved them above TOT on goal difference. The Raging Mackerels join TOT and Pattaya Utd on 25 points.

An injury time penalty from Masahito Noto won the points for Chainat over Bangkok United. Earlier, Ratchapol had given the Hornbills a 20th minute lead but that was cancelled out 12 minutes later when Milos Bogonovic nipped in to take advantage of some sloppy defending. The win for Chainat moved them onto 34 points.

Division 1

Khon Kaen 0-3 Bangkok FC
Krabi 3-1 Phuket
Rayong FC 0-0 PTT Rayong
Singh Tarua 1-0 Nakhon Ratchasima
TTM 0-1 Siam Navy

The battle for promotion remains on tenterhooks after yesterday's results. PTT Rayong seemed a shoo-in for promotion a few weeks ago but no wins in five matches leaves Singh Tarua and Bangkok FC breathing closely down their neck.
PTT were held to a 0-0 draw at Rayong FC while Tarua's winning goal came courtesy of Leandro yet again. Bangkok FC won 3-0 at Khon Kaen as the T-Rex goalkeeper had a nightmare performance. Piyawat's flap at Watson's cross after barely one minute allowed Lee Tuck to fire home his 21st goal of the season. In the 70th minute, Niranrit tapped in after the keeper couldn't hold onto the ball. The build up to the third goal started when the keeper miscued a kick straight to one of his opponents. Instead of redeeming his error, he then made another as Watson's shot slipped through his gloves.
The current standings at the top are Air Force 59, PTT 57, Tarua 56 and Bangkok FC 55. Air Force could increase their lead at BBCU later today while next Saturday has a mouth watering clash with Bangkok FC hosting Singh Tarua.

Two late goals won the Andaman coast derby for Krabi and at the same time it moved them above the Islanders in the league table. Thaweephong gave the Energy a first half lead before Ludo levelled in the 63rd minute. With time running out, Valci Junior teased the Phuket defence and was brought down in the box. The Brazilian then nonchalantly chipped the spot kick home. A long range drive from Ittiphol was the icing on the cake as Krabi won 3-1. Phuket's misery was rounded off when Kriangkrai was given a straight red for an ugly, lunging challenge.
Rafael Moretto curled home the only goal of the game as Siam Navy won 1-0 at TTM. Navy are now level with Phuket on 36 points.

Singh Tarua 1-0 Nakhon Ratchasima

Singh Tarua increased their winning streak to nine at the PAT Stadium with a narrow win over Nakhon Ratchasima.

Noah Chivuta came close for Nakhon Ratchasima in the opening minutes but for the rest of the opening period it was the home side who were on top.

Ivan Petrovic set up Kroekrit in the 25th minute but the Chonburi loanee fired his low shot wide of the target. Two minutes later Leandro's flicked effort hit the base of the post as the hosts increased the pressure.

Tarua finally made the breakthrough on the half hour mark when Leandro finished off a move at the second attempt after Ali Diarra's galloping run on goal had been blocked by Prasit.

As the interval approached, Tarua had chances to double their lead. First, Patrick Reichet scuffed his shot across goal and then Leandro's shot flew just wide.

The second half was rather quieter as Tarua sat on their lead inviting the guests to attack. Korat lacked creativity in the centre of the park and had little cutting edge upfront. At times, the Swatcats were committing too many men forward which left them vulnerable to the Tarua counter attacks.

Kriakiat's long range shot in the 77th minute was palmed over the bar by Watcahara and that attempt was the closest it got for Nakhon Ratchasima.

I thought the 1-0 victory for Singh Tarua was slightly more comfortable the the scoreline suggests. Korat to me seemed to have their eye on the bigger prize of winning the second leg of their League Cup semi final against Ratcahburi on Wednesday.

The win keeps Tarua sandwiched in third place one point behind PTT Rayong and one ahead of Bangkok FC.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Matchday 30 Preview


Bangkok Glass v TOT
Chainat v Bangkok Utd
Samut Songkhram v Osotspa Saraburi
Sisaket P-P Pattaya Utd

Buriram v Chonburi
Chiang Rai Utd v Army Utd
Muangthong Utd v Suphanburi
Police Utd v BEC Tero
Songkhla Utd v Ratchaburi

On Sunday, Buriram United welcome Chonburi to the Thunder Castle. With five games left to play and a five point buffer on Muangthong, a win over the Sharks would leave Buriram within touching distance of seizing the TPL crown. Games between this duo usually produce goals. Earlier in the season, Buriram cruised to a 4-1 win at Chonburi. However, last season Chonburi claimed a sensational 4-3 win in Buriram.

Muangthong also play on Sunday and nothing less than three points is required. Their last four league games have only yielded one win for the current champs and it's nine games since they kept a clean sheet. Their opponents Suphanburi have stuttered in Leg 2 after such a promising start.

Also on Sunday, supporters of Pattaya, Ratchaburi, Samut Songkhram and TOT will be hoping that Army can do them a favour up at Chiang Rai Utd. A win for the Fighting Beetles would leave them in sight of the pack.
Police v BEC Tero doesn't have much riding on it and Songkhla v Ratchaburi has the hallmarks of being a low scoring contest.

It's another quiet Saturday lineup with only three fixtures. Bangkok Glass are on a six game unbeaten run and they have a cup final to look forward to after a 5-2 midweek win over Police Utd. At the other end of the current form spectrum, TOT have only picked up one point in the last ten matches. You'd have to be bold to predict anything other than a home win.
Chainat have been averaging less than a point a game since the start of Leg 2 and they welcome Bangkok United who would move above the 30 point mark with a win. For Samut Songkhram their last six matches have yielded two wins, two draws and two defeats. Their opponents Osotspa are unbeaten in their last four away fixtures with the last two being clean sheets.

Division 1

Khon Kaen v Bangkok FC
Krabi v Phuket
Rayong FC v PTT Rayong
Singh Tarua v Nakhon Ratchasima
TTM v Siam Navy

BBCU v Air Force
Rayong Utd v Ayutthaya
Saraburi v Trat
Sriracha v Nakhon Pathom Utd

Singh Tarua are the only side in the top 4 with a home match this weekend. They entertain a Nakhon Ratchasima side who will have one eye on the second leg of the League Cup semi-final next Wednesday. Last weekend Tarua drew 2-2 at PTT Rayong to keep their noses ahead of Bangkok FC. The Iron Bulls travel to Khon Kaen hoping to emulate their home fixture with the T-Rex back in May. That ended 7-3 with Olof Watson bagging a hat-trick on the evening.
PTT Rayong make the short journey into Rayong city center to Rayong FC. The wheels fell of Rayong's recovery wagon last week when they lost 4-1 at Krabi. Similar to Korat, Rayong FC might be distracted with a 1-0 lead to preserve in Buriram on the following Wednesday.
Air Force are away too but they have a quick trip down Vipawadee Road to BBCU. The Big Bang's season is basically pedaling through the motions but they have a habit of upsetting the apple cart when there is little at stake.

It's make or break for Rayong United when they welcome Ayutthaya on Sunday. A victory would move them to within three points of third bottom Ayutthaya while a defeat would almost certainly assign them to regional league football in 2014.
The southern clash between Krabi and Phuket has proved hostile in the last couple of seasons. Nonetheless, a win for Krabi would see them climb above the Islanders. Phuket were considered one of the favorites for promotion at the outset of the season but at this moment they're struggling to finish in the top half.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

FA Cup Semi-Final Results

Buriram Utd 1-0 Muangthong Utd
Police Utd 2-5 Bangkok Glass

So it's a Buriram Utd v Bangkok Glass showdown on November 10.
Buriram reached the final after edging out bitter rivals Muangthong 1-0 at the Thammasart Stadium. It was an open end-to-end tie from start to finish with the winning goal coming moments after half time. A Jirawat free kick was knocked on by Kai Hirano and Visanusak made a good block. Unfortunately for the Muangthong stopper, Redondo right footed home a rebound from seven yards.
Chappuis and Hirano had good chances to put the game to bed while at the other end Mario couldn't get enough power to his sliding flick to beat Siwaruck. The Buriram keeper produced several fine saves throughout but it was his counterpart who was sent off towards the end. Visanusak raced out off his box to close down the advancing Ekkachai, but in doing so he chopped him down and was given his marching orders. The 10 men couldn't force an equalizer as it ended 1-0 to the cup holders.

At the Rajamangala Stadium, Bangkok Glass smashed Police United 5-2 to reach their first ever domestic cup final. Teeratep opened the scoring in the 20th minute when he stroked home from a tight angle after Pattara had parried the ball into his path. However, minutes later, Paitoon's deflected shot got Police back on level terms. Ten minutes before the break, Teeratep curled home nonchalantly from outside the box to give BG a 2-1 lead at the break.
Flavien Michelini then snuck in at the back post just after the hour to make it 3-1. Three minutes later, it was game over as the unfortunate Pattara accidentally knocked in a Korakod free kick which had rebounded onto him off the crossbar.
Goran Jerkovic added the cherry to the cake with three minutes remaining as he finished off a breakaway move. Pinho did score with the last kick off the game but it was little more than a consolation for Police.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Division 2 Playoff Fixtures

Group A

(Saturday 5 October)
Kasetsart v Luk Esan
Nara Utd v Roi Et Utd
Prachuap v Phitsanulok

(Saturday 12 October)
Luk Esan v Prachuap
Nara Utd v Kasetsart
Phitsanulok v Roi Et Utd

(Sunday 20 October)
Phitsanulok v Luk Esan
Prachuap v Nara Utd
Roi Et Utd v Kasetsart

(Sunday 27 October)
Kasetsart v Prachuap
Luk Esan v Roi Et Utd
Nara Utd v Phitsanulok

(Saturday 2 November)
Luk Esan v Nara Utd
Phitsanulok v Kasetsart
Roi Et Utd v Prachuap

(Saturday 9 November)
Kasetsart v Phitsanulok
Nara Utd v Luk Esan
Prachuap v Roi Et Utd

(Saturday 16 November)
Phitsanulok v Nara Utd
Prachuap v Kasetsart
Roi Et Utd v Phitsanulok

(Saturday 23 November)
Kasetsart v Roi Et Utd
Luk Esan v Phitsanulok
Nara Utd v Prachuap

(Sunday 1 December)
Kasetsart v Nara Utd
Prachuap v Luk Esan
Roi Et Utd v Phitsanulok

(Sunday 8 December)
Luk Esan v Kasetsart
Phitsanulok v Prachuap
Roi Et Utd v Nara Utd

Group B

(Sunday 6 October)
Nakhon Nayok v Chiang Mai Utd
Paknampo NSRU v Ang Thong
Sukhothai v Udon Thani

(Sunday 13 October)
Ang Thong v Udon Thani
Chiang Mai v Paknampo NSRU
Sukhothai v Nakhon Nayok

(Saturday 19 October)
Ang Thong v Chiang Mai
Paknampo NSRU v Sukhothai
Udon Thani v Nakhon Nayok

(Saturday 26 October)
Chiang Mai v Udon Thani
Nakhon Nayok v Paknampo NSRU
Sukhothai v Ang Thong

(Sunday 3 November)
Ang Thong v Nakhon Nayok
Chiang Mai v Sukhothai
Udon Thani v Paknampo NSRU

(Sunday 10 November)
Nakhon Nayok v Ang Thong
Paknampo NSRU v Udon Thani
Sukhothai v Chiang Mai

(Sunday 17 November)
Ang Thong v Sukhothai
Paknampo NSRU v Nakhon Nayok
Udon Thani v Chiang Mai

(Sunday 24 November)
Chiang Mai v Ang Thong
Nakhon Nayok v Udon Thani
Sukhothai v Paknampo NSRU

(Saturday 30 November)
Nakhon Nayok v Sukhothai
Paknampo NSRU v Chiang Mai
Udon Thani v Ang Thong

(Saturday 7 December)
Ang Thong v Paknampo NSRU
Chiang Mai v Nakhon Nayok
Udon Thani v Sukhothai

Monday, September 23, 2013

Division 2 Playoffs Draw

Group A
Luk Esan Thai Airways
Nara Utd
Roi Et Utd

Group B
Ang Thong
Chiang Mai
Paknampo NSRU
Udon Thani
Nakhon Nayok

Teams will play each other home and away and the top two from each group will be promoted to the first division. The opening fixtures will be played on the 5th October.

In Group A Roi Et will start as favorites and they'll be hoping it's third time lucky after two failures in the last two seasons. Phitsanulok will fancy their chances of making it and nobody will relish travelling to Nara Utd. The other three sides can't be written off either.

There is no doubting that Chiang Mai are the side to beat in Group B.Udon Thani have shown in the League Cup that they have what it takes and Pakhampo will surely be in the hunt too. Similar to Group B, the other three sides are in with a decent shout too.

Fixtures to follow:

Sunday 22 September Review


Army Utd 0-0 Buriram Utd
Bangkok Utd 1-1 Bangkok Glass
Osotspa Saraburi 1-1 Police Utd
Pattaya Utd 3-0 Chainat

The Army v Buriram contest was a washout ending 0-0. The Thunder Castle had the better chances but couldn't make the vital breakthrough. The point maintains Buriram's five point lead over Muangthong as the season enters the home straight. 

Pattaya moved six points clear of the relegation placing with a comprehensive 3-0 win over Chainat. Marian Juhas headed the Dolphins ahead just after the half hour before Ajoku Obinna netted a rebound to make it 2-0 before the interval. Jeera rounded things off in the 77th minute shooting home from an acute angle.

In Din Daeng, Piyachart was red carded for BG after an altercation with Wittaya. Despite being a man down, it was Glass who took the lead in 31st minute when Flavien Michelini flicked home with the outside of his right boot. The ten men couldn't hold out as Naruphol followed in to level after a weak goalkeeping flap.

Kobenan gave Osotspa a third minute lead in their 1-1 draw with Police Utd. Michael Murcy crashed a penalty onto the crossbar yet his blushes were spared when Pinyo equalized with the last kick off the game.

Division 1
Bangkok FC 4-1 Siam Navy
Krabi 4-1 Rayong FC
Nakhon Ratchasima 3-2 Khon Kaen
PTT Rayong 2-2 Singh Tarua

The big game of the day ended 2-2 between PTT Rayong and Singh Tarua. Phaisan headed the hosts infront before Leandro canceled the lead out with a header of his own. The slapstick moment of the day ended with the unfortunate Decha sliding home Ivan's goalbound effort after a comedy of errors between goalkeeper and defence. Phaisan stabbed home from close range in the 71st minute to bag his second of the day and in doing so earned his side a point.

Lee Tuck got his picture back onto the TPL official top goal scorer list with a hat-trick against Siam Navy. His first was a crisp drive form 25 yards and he then netted two from the penalty spot. In between, Seksan was dismissed and Souleymane Coulibaly levelled for Navy. Anonio Pina added some gloss to the result in the 94th minute.

Rayong FC's survival bid took a severe dent as they were pounded 4-1 at Krabi while Nakhon Ratchasima won the bragging rights of the north-east with a 3-2 win over Khon Kaen. The attendance of 23,844 in Korat was the division's highest of the season.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Army United 0-0 Buriram United

The impending dark rainclouds in Bangkok burst open moments before the match was about to commence and it made conditions almost unplayable.

During the first half I could barely see the pitch as the rain was pelting down furiously. My recollection of the half was a decent shout from Aron da Silva for a penalty as he was bundled over in the box, and a lunging Suchao effort following a corner which he skied over at the back post.

Osmar spurned the best opening of the match ten minutes into the second half when he spooned over an Anawin cross from inside the six yard box.

Lindemann came closest for Army but his attempt landed on the roof of the net.

Kai Hirano could have won the contest late on for Buriram but he got stuck in a puddle as he tried to round the Army keeper and his shot landed ridiculously wide of the target.

Given the conditions coupled with MTU's result yesterday, Buriram might grudgingly have accepted the 0-0 draw. For me the rain ruined a contest which I was looking forward to viewing. At this time of year, I suppose we have to accept that some games are going to be washouts.

Saturday 21 September Review


BEC Tero 2-4 Chiang Rai Utd
Chonburi 5-1 Songkhla Utd
Samut Songkhram 1-1 Muangthong Utd

Only the most optimistic of Muangthong fans would consider the title race still to be alive after the champions dropped two points at lowly Samut Songkhram yesterday. Mark Babo capitalised on some soft defending to give the Raging Mackerels a 14th minute lead. MTU did level sixteen minutes from time when Chainarong headed home. The draw leaves Muanghthong four points behind Buriram and that could be extended to seven later today if Buriram are successful at Army United.

Anurak Srikerd got of to a flying start in his first game in the CRU hotseat with a 4-2 win at BEC Tero. The new coach had barely taken his seat in the dug-out when goals from Nix and Leonardo gave his side a 2-0 lead. Tero fought back after the interval with Cleiton netting twice, but Narul and Choklap ensured the former Phatthalung coach got off to a winning start. The Fighting Beetles are currently three points from safety.

Songkhla United must be wishing the season was over after they suffered a 5-1 drubbing at Chonburi. The returning Thiago Cunha opened the scoring in the 18th minute before Assumpcao doubled that lead three minutes later. Former Chonburi man Darko did pull one back before the break, but three second half goals courtesy of Thiago, Ajayi and a cheeky Therdsak penalty completed a miserable evening for the Fighting Bull.

Division 1

Ayutthaya 3-3 Saraburi
Nakhon Pathom Utd 2-0 BBCU
Phuket 0-0 Trat
Rayong Utd 2-2 Air Force
TTM 2-1 Sriracha

A crowd of 275 watched bottom club Rayong United hold leaders Air Force to a 2-2 draw. Noppol's shot just crept over the line to give the Elephant Warrior the lead before Julius Oiboh's fine solo goal levelled in the 55th minute. Four minutes later, Anat restored the lead for RU but yet again Air Force fought back with a Zezinando thunderbolt. The draw ensures Air Force will remain at the top after this round of fixtures. Rayong United are still six points from safety.

The match of the day came at Ayutthaya as they shared six goals with neighbors Saraburi. The Red Knight took a 2-0 lead into the break with strikes from Yutthana and Nakarin. However, by the midway point of the second half it was all square as Durosinmi and Pongtep found the back of the net. Bernhard Henry restored the lead for Saraburi before Sathit curled a free kick home to equalise in the 87th minute. The point edges the Ancient Warriors three ahead of second bottom Rayong FC.

Elsewhere a brace from Nirut helped TTM beat Sriracha 2-1 while Ablorh and Houma were on target for Nakhon Pathom United as they beat BBCU 2-0. Phuket v Trat finished goalless.