Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Toyota League Cup Last 8 (leg 2) - Fixtures

Chonburi (0) v (1) Ratchaburi
Luk Tapfah (1) v (1) Rayong FC
Nakhon Ratchasima (0) v (1) Army Utd
Udon Thani (0) v (1) Buriram United

All fixtures to be played to a conclusion on Wednesday evening.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Sa Kaeo 2-1 Thai Fleet

Sa Kaeo scored two late goals even though they only had ten men as they beat Thai Fleet 2-1. The match looked to have been heading for a stalemate until the dismissal of Peerapat was surprisingly the catalyst that sparked Sa Kaeo into life.

From my own point of view, it was an adventure finding the stadium as I didn't arrive at this match until 4.30 which was 30 minutes past the scheduled kick off.

With the venue given on various websites as the Sa Kaeo Provincial Stadium, I confidently studied Google Maps and rolled up to a location in the centre of the town at 3.45pm only to find that it was a barren park that probably hadn't seen any action since the last time Liverpool won the league.

Without any maps on hand, it was time for my better half to ask locals for directions to the stadium, and inevitably our wild goose chase began.

Eventually our destination was reached at 4.30pm and we paid 40 baht each to enter the away end which was full of home fans with the exception a handful of Thai Fleet followers who'd even managed to bring their own drum.

Add caption
The match must have started five minutes early as by 4.40pm the fourth official was holding aloft the board which was indicating two minutes of injury time.

After a couple of half time refreshments, it was time to finally write what could be salvaged of a match report.

Both sides started the second period playing 4-3-3 formations, and it was the guests who were looking more comfortable.

The groans greeting misplaced passes from the hosts suggested that it had been a frustrating afternoon thus far.

On the hour, Dollar turned and shot from the edge of the box forcing the Thai Fleet keeper to save with his legs.

Turning point
At the other end, newly introduced sub, Pachit, should have done better with his first effort, but he dragged his shot wide from 18 yards.

The changing point of the match came in the 75th minute when Peerapat was given a second yellow for a wild hack. The noise made by the kick on Noppadon's shin pads echoed around the arena as there were little complaints from the home contingent.

Sa Kaeo then decided to sit back and use the pace of Dollar on the counter attack, and it worked a treat.

In the 80th minute, the African broke and played in Suwit who squeezed the ball under the Thai Fleet keeper from a tight angle after he beat him in a race for the ball.

As time was running out, a long goal kick released Dollar, and yet again the onrushing keeper was beaten allowing Dollar to roll home the winner into an empty net.

The same man again rounded Fleet's keeper two minutes later, but this time his shot was blocked on the line.

Noppadon scored a late consolation for Thai Fleet as the four minutes of injury time quickly doubled due to the home side keeper feigning injury.

Overall, I enjoyed my trip out to Sa Kaeo despite missing a third of the match. The main focus this weekend is obviously Thailand v Liverpool and I don't blame the Thai public for wishing to watch their heroes live. For me, I'd rather watch Division 2, although I know it's only me and a sprinkling of expat Thai football followers and local Thai diehards who feel this way.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Sunday 21 July Review


BEC Tero 0-3 Ratchaburi
BEC Tero suffered their fourth straight league defeat as the were soundly beaten by Ratchaburi. Obregon gave the away side a first half lead from the spot before second half goals from Jose Luis Cordelo and Douglas (penalty) made it 3-0. Apiwat was given a straight red late on to round off a miserable evening for Tero

Police Utd 1-0 TOT
TOT were left fuming with the match officials after they felt all the major decisions went against them. In the first half Lee Junki had a perfectly good goal flagged offside, and in the 72nd minute Punnarat was adjudged to have felled Pedrinho in the box. Murcy converted the penalty kick to win Police the three points. Big Bas Savage had a reasonable penalty claim knocked back in the dying seconds before Noppol was red carded for cynically tripping an opponent.

Samut Songkhram 0-0 Bangkok Utd
Bangkok United would probably have been happier with the point as they kept their second successive clean sheet. Samut Songkhram remain safe, yet they'll be disappointed to have only taken two points from a possible nine against other relegation candidates in their last three matches.

Songkhla Utd 2-0 Chainat
Goals in either half helped Songkhla comfortably beat Chainat 2-0. Jules Baga and Manop were the scorers for the southern club. Chainat's best two chances fell to Puwadol and Surachet, but their efforts were both skied over the bar.

Division 1

Khon Kaen 0-2 Saraburi
Saraburi jumped up the table five places into fifth spot after their 2-0 win at Khon Kaen. Two early goals had them in firmly control. Yusuke headed the Warlords in front before Bernard Henri set up Supakorn with the second. The loss for the T-Rex leaves them one place off the drop zone.

Krabi 1-0 Air Force
Valci Junior's second half goal won it for Krabi as Air Force lost their second match of the season. Air Force remain top while Krabi have moved two points away from danger.

Rayong FC 0-0 Ayutthaya 
The two former Division 2 Central/East foes couldn't be separated as they played out an uneventful goalless draw. 

Sriracha 4-0 BBCU
The Blue Marlins won their first home game in three months with a comprehensive 4-0 win over BBCU. Diego Pishinin gave Sriracha the lead before Patipat doubled the advantage in the 74th minute. Berlin made it three a minute later and the Cameroonian grabbed his brace deep into stoppage time.

BEC Tero 0- 3 Ratchaburi

Ratchaburi claimed their first win in twelve TPL games as they comfortably beat BEC Tero 3-0.

Going into this encounter, BEC Tero sat fifth from top while Ratchaburi were five places from the foot of the table. The hosts had lost their four previous games in the league and cup and were under the guidance of 34 year old Rangsan Viwatchaichok after Rene Desaeyere had been fired after barely three months of service. Ratchaburi were also under orders from a new tactician with Jordi Blanco Moreno supposedly in charge. However, it seemed that Master Fluke was calling the shots from the bench.

The early action saw Rattana's crisp strike forcing Pisan into a decent save while at the other end a Cleiton Silva header flew narrowly wide of the post.

Ratchaburi took the lead at the half point of the first half when Jhon Obregon neatly converted a penalty after the referee judged that Attapong had his legs sliced from underneath him in the box. The Colombian Balotelli celebrated the opening goal with as much enthusiasm as his Italian namesake.

The Fire Dragons lacked creativity and there was no movement in the final third as the Ratchaburi Dragons easily played out the first half holding a 1-0 lead

There was a brief flurry of activity at the beginning of the second period with Obregon testing Pisan while Peerapat clipped the Ratchaburi crossbar following a shot from a tight angle.

The away side pressed for a second as the hosts ran out of ideas. Eakarat's shot come cross flew across the goal while Pisan acrobatically tipped a Jang Gil Hyeok shot wide as the pressure increased.

In the 79th minute, it was game over as Jose Luis Cordello drilled home from ten yards to make it 2-0 after a corner kick had landed kindly into his path.

With four minutes remaining, Ratchaburi were presented with a penalty when Pisan carelessly left a leg out for Douglas to trip over it. The Brazilian got up and sent the Tero keeper the wrong way to make it 3-0.

A bad day at the office was compounded two minutes later when Apiwat was given a straight red for a brutal body check on Douglas.

It finished 3-0 and apparently it was all the referee's fault as the Tero fans directed their abuse to the man wearing green. It grows tedious when fans keep pinning the failures of their own side onto the shoulders of the match officials.

In all honesty, BEC Tero were extremely poor, but credit must be given to Ratchaburi as they played well. Their defending was solid and the two new signings, Jhon Obregon and Jose Luis Cordello, certainly added some creative flair in the final third.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Army Utd 1-1 Chonburi

Both sides had one man sent off as the spoils were shared between Army United and Chonburi.

When it was still 11 v 11
The first to go was 'Jackie' Diakite in the 12th minute after an off the ball incident involving Army's centre back Tanakorn.

Despite the man advantage Army couldn't grab control on proceedings as Sinthaweechai in the Chonburi goal was virtually a spectator.

The Chonburi stalwart was eventually called into action eight minutes before the break pushing a Nipol effort to safety after it had hit the inside of the post. Some Army players were adamant that the ball had crossed the line, although from my position, it clearly hadn't.

The play quickly switched to the other end and Chaiwat was then ordered off for hauling down Samuel Ajayi as the former BG striker was baring down on goal.

Chakrit stepped up to take the resultant free kick, and his deflected effort found the back of the net to give the Sharks the lead five minutes before the interval.

Just as it seemed that Chonburi were holding the upper hand, Army equalized deep into first half stoppage time. A lay off from Barakat cut through the Chonburi back 4 setting up Tanakorn to slot home the leveller.

Army upped their passing game in the second half as Chonburi seemed quite content to sit back and use the pacy bursts of Samuel Ajayi on the break. The Nigerian was a constant menace, but he just couldn't produce the goods in the Army penalty box.

Both keepers handled whatever came their way, with Todsaporn producing a save for the cameras as he tipped over a free kick from Chonburi's Arthit.

The fact that both sides played the second half with a player short of their full compliment, allowed for an open contest and a 1-1 draw was probably a fair outcome.

Saturday 20 July Review


Army 1-1 Chonburi
Diakite was dismissed early doors for an off the ball elbow and then Chaiwat hauled down Ajayi seven minutes before the break to make it 10 v 10. Chakrit scored from the resultant free kick to give the Sharks the lead but Tanakorn levelled in first half stoppage time.  

Bangkok Glass 0-0 Buriram Utd
Buriram edged another point ahead of second placed Muangthong after their 0-0 draw at Bangkok Glass. Leandro dos Santos was red carded for BG midway through the second period, yet BG held out for a hard earned point.

Chiang Rai Utd 0-0 Suphanburi 
CRU are still looking for their first home win after their 0-0 blank with Suphanburi. The away side had more chances, but it was the home side who came closest late-on when Jerri Farias' low shot struck the base of the post.

Osotspa Saraburi 2-1 Pattaya Utd
Osotspa stretched their unbeaten run to 8 games with a 2-1 victory over Pattaya United. The on-form Chananan gave the hosts the lead shortly after the hour before Kosawat headed home from close range to double that lead three minutes later. Pattaya pulled one back through Bhengu but it was too little too late as Osotspa's coach, Chalermwoot, claimed a satisfactory win against his former club.

Division 1

Bangkok FC 1-1 Phuket
Sukree's 8th minute goal was cancelled out 20 minutes later by Samuel Danquah as the points were shared. Bangkok FC dropped out the promotion places while Phuket are now 6 points off that illustrious third place.  
PTT Rayong 1-0 Nakhon Pathom Utd
The Oil Millionaires pulled off another 1-0 win with Phaisan's 75th winner keeping them on course for the TPL. The clean sheet for the Rayong club kept up their impressive record of not conceding a home goal this season.

Rayong Utd 0-0 Siam Navy
Siam Navy doubled their points haul on the road as they moved out of the drop zone. Rayong Utd have now collected four points from their last two matches, but they are still bottom of the table.

Singh Tarua 3-0 Trat
Tarua climbed up to third after their comfortable 3-0 win over Trat. New boy, Sujarit, headed the Klong Toei side into an early lead before second half goals from Todsapol and a delicious flick and volley from Leandro wrapped up the win. Singh Tarua's 3-0 win saw them become the first side to keep a clean sheet against Trat this season.

TTM 1-0 Nakhon Ratchasima
The Korat faithful were furious after their loss to TTM. The main cause of their anger was the weakened team selected by their coach. Late arrivals to the Bunyajinda Stadium would have missed the only goal of the game as TTM's 1-0 win moved them to within one point of safety.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Matchday 19 Preview


Army v Chonburi
Bangkok Glass v Buriram Utd
Chiang Rai Utd v Suphanburi
Osotspa Saraburi v Pattaya Utd

BEC Tero v Ratchaburi
Muangthong Utd P-P Sisaket
Police Utd v TOT
Samut Songkhram v Bangkok Utd
Songkhla Utd v Chainat

Domestic action is allowed to briefly return this weekend as there is a ten day window to fill amid the string of glamour friendlies. Man Utd and Chelsea have already departed to continue their world tours while Liverpool and Barcelona will wash up on these shores later this month.

The big game this weekend is Bangkok Glass v Buriram United. The match pits BG's Attaphol against his former charges, Buriram United, for the first time since his bizarre sacking minutes after leading Buriram into the last 16 of the AFC Champions League. That decision must still hurt and winning this would help to erase some of the pain that he must have felt. Nonetheless, Bangkok Glass' recent record against Buriram is abysmal and another win for the Thunder Castle would effectively see them move eight points clear of Muangthong. The Kirins sit this weekend out due to having Sisaket as scheduled opponents. The delay might suit Muangthong as it gives them a chance to find a new coach after Winfried Schaefer's departure to take up the reigns of the Jamaican national side.

Whispers have been circulating that Sisaket will be demoted regardless of the courtroom verdict come November. That would mean there would be only two relegation spots left to fill between Pattaya, Chiang Rai, Bangkok Utd, Samut Songkham and Ratchaburi.
Pattaya and Chiang Rai currently occupy those unwanted places and come Saturday evening it's hard to envisage them both not being there after their weekend matches. Chiang Rai travel to Suphanburi while Pattaya visit inform Osotspa Saraburi.
Ratchaburi have brought in a new coach, Jordi Blanco Moreno, to halt their slump before they travel to BEC Tero who themselves are under the guidance of a new tactician after they gave the newly appointed Rene Desaeyere the boot.
A win for Bangkok United at Samut Songkhram this Sunday would move them five points clear of the Mackerels and dare say it, mid-table safety.

Elsewhere, Army welcome Chonburi and they'll be hoping to repeat last season's 1-0 home win, while Police v TOT and Songkhla v Chainat are nothing more than two mid-table encounters.

Division 1

Bangkok FC v Phuket
PTT Rayong v Nakhon Pathom Utd
Rayong Utd v Siam Navy
Singh Tarua v Trat
TTM v Nakhon Ratchasima

Khon Kaen v Saraburi
Krabi v Air Force
Rayong FC v Ayutthaya
Sriracha v BBCU

Between fifth placed Phuket and Saraburi in tenth, there are only two points separating six sides who will still have ambitions of claiming one of the three promotion places. With 16 games left, now is the time for Phuket, Trat, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nakhon Pathom, BBCU and Saraburi to stand up and be counted.

Phuket and Trat both make visits to the sides who sit above them in third and fourth place. Games between Bangkok and Phuket usually result in torrential downpours, so they'll be hoping to get this game finished within the regulation 90 minutes. Bangkok FC will be without their head coach Reuther Moreira as he is back home in Brazil attending to his sick father. Trat make their first trip to the PAT Stadium with Singh Tarua hoping to be the first side to keep a clean sheet against the White Elephants this season.

TTM were rumoured to be heading to Lopburi, but as of now their match with Korat will go ahead at the Bunyajinda Stadium. Korat's squad has been boosted with the arrival of Tatree Seeha on loan from Army Utd. The former Army captain joins a list of other new signings by the Swatcats who have been dismissed by their previous clubs due to disciplinary problems

Nakhon Pathom United will travel to PTT Rayong without top scorer Camara Souleymane. He has apparently been placed on the transfer list for getting too big for his boots.

BBCU will fancy their chances of grabbing three points at Sriracha as the Blue Marlins continue to asset strip their squad. Tenth placed Saraburi are seven points off promotion and three points are a must at Khon Kaen if the Warlords are to close the gap..

The Rayong Provincial Stadium hosts two relegation six pointers this weekend with Rayong Utd v Siam Navy on Saturday and Rayong FC v Ayutthaya 24 hours later. Krabi will be keeping their eye on these two matches as a loss at home to leaders Air Force could see them tumble into the drop zone.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Kasetsart 0-2 North Bangkok

Kasetsart's promotion bid took a body blow after North Bangkok's hard earned 2-0 win

The home side looked the more likely to take the lead early on as North Bangkok's keeper had to be on his toes to make a couple of saves.

However, it was North Bangkok who took the lead on twenty minutes when a corner caught Jakarin out of position leaving Sathaporn with a free header at the back post.

Kasetsart lost their way after the goal and a double substitution was made on the half hour mark with Tahi Tiacoh and Chawin replacing the ineffective Manit and the unfortunate Essomba who was hooked to allow another foreigner to enter the fray.

Nothing seemed to change and the visitors had a great chance to make it 2-0 seconds after the restart. A swift break down the right found Sathaporn in the middle, but the goalscorer's shot was saved by Jakarin.

The Emerald Nagas played their final substitution with 35 minutes left replacing Thanasak with Yuranan.

Kasetsart tried to throw bodies forward with many players rotating positions. Their pressing was creating few clear cut chances and the closest they came was from a Jakkaphan chip that landed on the roof of the net.

North Bangkok were holding out relatively comfortably and they had two great chances to double their advantage before they eventually put the game beyond doubt in the last minute.

A swift counter from Sathaporn set up Nirud, but his shot was blocked by the keeper. With seven minutes left, Teerasak watched his shot roll agonisingly past the post after he'd been left unmarked inside the box.

In the last minute, Pathoomchai rattled home from a tight angle after a corner had only been partially cleared into his path.

The only bright spot for Kasetsart this weekend was that main rivals NSRU and Nonthaburi both dropped points. Some of Kasetsart's play in the final third was poor and they'll need to be more creative in this area if they are to reach the playoffs.

North Bangkok now have the 6-6-6 record of wins, draws and loses. With performances like this, I'd expect the win column will be higher than the loses come the end of the season.

Man of the Match: Sathaporn - His pace on the break caused Kasetsart problems

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Seeker Futera 4-1 Globex

Seeker Futera moved up to third with a comprehensive victory over basement dwellers Globex.

The online managed side started with a 4-2-3-1 formation and they passed the ball neatly across the deck in the opening minutes.

Sayun gave Futera a seventh minute lead with a close range finish after a cross from Nattaporn had squeezed through a forest of legs.

Globex rallied and almost levelled three minutes later when Tsurumi dinked over the keeper. Fortunately, Thasthanya was on the line to clear the danger for the hosts.

However, Globex equalized with their next attack when Hattaphon slotted home after rounding goalie Worawut.

The home side regained the lead ten minutes before the break with Nattaporn scoring after a smart side-footed flick from Siwa had set him up.

The game slightly lulled after the interval although Sayan came close to making it 3-1 with a free kick.

The Ramkamhaeng side briefly dominated midway through the second half with Hatthaphon blazing over from inside the box while Sayan had to block on the line after a scramble inside the box.

The three points were duly wrapped up nine minutes from time when substitute Somsak cut inside his man setting up Stephane Mbazoma to launch a shot into the top corner.

In the last minute, Somsak drilled home a low shot inside the post to round off a 4-1 win for Futera.

Seeker Futera secured their third consecutive win as they moved to within four points of the playoff spots. They have some decent players in their team and if the online managers can make the right selections, then the playoffs could be within their grasp.

Globex remain rooted to the bottom of the league and you just wonder if their brief three year tenure will cease come the end of this season.

Man of the Match: Sayan Pengpun - He excelled in both attack and defence

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

FA Cup Last 16 Round Up

Bangkok FC 3-3 Army Utd (Bangkok win 5-3 on penalties)
Bangkok FC and Army United fought out an entertaining 3-3 and it needed penalties to separate the sides. Bangkok FC were 2-0 up before Army fought back to edge into a 3-2 lead. Army couldn't hold out as Tawin equalized late on. The Bang Mod side eventually won 5-3 on penalties to book their spot in the quarter finals.

BEC Tero 1-2 PTT Rayong
The Fire Dragons woeful run continued as they were ousted from the cup by first division PTT Rayong. Kirati's goal five minutes from time won PTT Rayong the contest 2-1.

Muangthong Utd 5-0 Phuket
After an uneventful first half, Mario Djurovski gave Muangthong the lead seconds after the restart as his shot went in off Jakrapong. The unfortunate Alef scooped the ball into the net following a Teerasil centre to effectively seal the match for Muangthong in the 57th minute. The returning Edivaldo side footed home ten minutes later before Teerasil burst through the middle to chip over the Phuket keeper with 15 minutes left. Pak Nam Chol rounded things off in the 90th minute with a simple goal to complete a 5-0 rout for Muangthong. 

Phatthalung 1-3 Chiang Rai Utd
Chiang Rai survived a potential banana skin with a second half fight back securing their 3-1 passage past regional league Phatthalung.

Police 4-2 Osotspa Saraburi 
The home side's Brazilian connection grabbed three of their four goals as they raced into a 4-0 lead. Osotspa snatched a couple of late consolations to make it a 4-2 scoreline.

Samut Songkhram 0-2 Buriram Utd
Jirawat and Patino were on target as the cup holders eased their way into the quarters with a 2-0 win at Samut Songkhram.

Singh Tarua 2-1 Bangkok Utd
Leandro was the toast of Khlong Toei as his brace helped Tarua come from behind to sink Bangkok United. The Division 1 side were reduced to 10 players late on when Todsapol was sent off.

Trat 1-2 Bangkok Glass (AET)
BG came flying out of the blocks and Chaiyaporn in the Trat goal was called upon to make a host of saves in the first ten minutes. Trat slowly worked their way into the game and an unmarked Rattaporn squeezed a shot into the bottom corner to give the White Elephants the lead in the 21st minute. Bangkok Glass had to wait until the 76th minute to level when Goran Jerkovic capitalized on a defensive fresh air kick to drill a low shot home. The tie went to extra time after the sides fought out an entertaining 1-1 draw in slippery conditions. As penalties were looming, Chatree headed a Peerapong cross to spare the lottery of spot kicks for the TPL side.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Sunday 7 July Review


Bangkok Glass 1-0 Songkhla Utd
Bangkok Utd 0-0 Police Utd
Chonburi 3-0 BEC Tero
Suphanburi 1-2 Buriram Utd
TOT 1-0 Chiang Rai Utd

Buriram United returned to the top of the league after they won 2-1 at Suphanburi. A deflected Anawin drive set the Thunder Castle on their way before Jesus Berrocal Campos, making his debut, doubled the scoring. Njie Divine was red carded on the hour for throwing the ball at Berrocal. Dragan Boskovic pulled a goal back seconds later, but Buriram held out to maintain their unbeaten start to the season.

The BEC Tero support were breathing fire after they lost 3-0 at Chonburi. Most of their vent was directed towards their general manager, Robert Procureur. Former Chonburi stopper Sujin had a day he'd like to forget as goals from Ivan Boskovic, Chakrit and Anucha rounded off an easy victory for the Sharks. Tero's misery was complete when Wichaya was sent for an early shower.

It was fairly tight elsewhere with TOT edging out Chiang Rai Utd 1-0. It was the same score at the Leo Stadium with Chatree's73rd minute header being the difference. Bangkok United and Police United couldn't be separated as they shared a 0-0 draw. The Angels will consider themselves slightly unlucky considering that they struck woodwork twice in the second period.

Division 1

Air Force 2-1 Rayong FC
Bangkok FC 2-1 Nakhon Ratchasima
Nakhon Pathom Utd 3-0 Krabi
TTM 0-0 PTT Rayong

Air Force and narrow victories seem to go hand-in-hand this season with another one achieved yesterday. Rayong FC's cause wasn't helped when Watcharapong was red carded for an off the ball incident in the 52nd minute. Jun Uruno opened the scoring on the hour, but Air Force were pegged back when Akawarin levelled for the Wild Horses. Debutant David le Bras came off the bench to head the winner with seven minutes remaining. Air Force increased their lead at the summit to seven points after PTT Rayong were surprisingly held to a draw at TTM.

Bangkok FC moved back into third place after they beat Nakhon Ratchasima 2-1. A Lee Tuck shot sneaked into the bottom corner to open the scoring. Kraikiat was given a second yellow to reduce Korat to 10 men before Tawin headed Bangkok's second goal. Brazilian newbie, Douglas Lopes, netted from the spot to grab a consolation for the Swatcats.

Krabi's plummet down the table continued as they were humbled 3-0 at Nakhom Pathom. Much was expected of Krabi's new striker Valci Junior, yet it was Nakhon Pathom's Andre Houma who stole the show with two assists and a goal.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

TOT 1-0 Chiang Rai Utd

Wichan Nanthasri's first half goal proved enough to sink Chiang Rai United and help TOT climb back into the top half of the TPL table.

The midfielder cut inside his marker and rifled home in the 32nd minute to secure TOT's first win in seven league outings.

I'll be polite and say that the opening half an hour was a cagey affair before TOT took the lead.

Chiang Rai had plenty of possession after the break, but were held off by some stubborn TOT defending. Leonardo and Nantawat had chances, but they were left frustrated as their efforts failed to find the target.

The returning Weera in the TOT goal had a quiet night with only a few routine saves to deal with throughout the 90 minutes.

TOT were quite happy sit back and spring on the counter attack as the match progressed. However, they were almost undone three minutes from time when a looping header from Antonio Claudio clipped the top of the bar.

The 1-0 win tonight was TOT's third clean sheet out of the last four and you can see where their strength lies. Chiang Rai's away form has been dismal this season with only five goals netted in ten matches. They have still to win at home this season, yet I'm sure the Orange Power will be grateful that nine of their last fifteen games will be played at the United Stadium.

Man of the Match: Lee Junki - Solid at the back

Saturday 6 July Review


Army Utd 0-2 Muangthong Utd
Chainat P-P Sisaket
Pattaya Utd 1-0 Samut Songkhram
Ratchaburi 2-3 Osotspa Saraburi

Muangthong United briefly sit on top of the official TPL table this morning after they won 2-0 at Army United. They achieved this without the presence of Winfried Schafer who was back in Germany coaching a charity match. The German would have missed seeing Piyaphon giving his side an early lead which really should have been 2-0 shortly before the break. The linesman incorrectly ruled Mario Djurovski offside much to the bemusement of the Gareth Southgate lookalike. Nipon did hit the crossbar for the hosts, but the game was won 20 minutes from time when Dagno Siaka netted from close range.

Another loss for Ratchaburi has them perilously close to the relegation zone. Chananan give Osotspa a 43rd minute lead, but two quick goals from Prayat and Chakrit meant the Dragons took a 2-1 lead into the break. Chananan struck again midway through the second half before a Lazarus Kaimbi header ensured the three points went back to Saraburi. The match winner was later dismissed in injury time.

Pattaya's 1-0 home win over Samut Songkhram keeps them within touching distance of safety. A trademark long range free kick from Pattaya stalwart Niweat was the difference between the sides as Pattaya completed the double over Samut Songkhram.

Division 1

Phuket 2-2 BBCU
Rayong Utd 1-0 Sriracha
Saraburi 2-1 Siam Navy
Singh Tarua 2-1 Ayutthaya
Trat 1-0 Khon Kaen

Despite a host of new signings, Phuket just can't seem to spark their season into life as they dropped more points yesterday. Bouba Abbo headed BBCU infront while spectators were still taking their seats, but Phuket levelled when Sittisak headed into his own net. The Islanders were looking good for the points when Ludo netted on his debut, but a long range strike from Weerayut in injury time ensured the points were shared.

The other four matches produced narrow home wins. Mathias Christen scored in injury time to earn Singh Tarua a 2-1 win over Ayutthaya while a 59th minute strike from Valery N Djomon was the winning goal in Sarburi's 2-1 over Siam Navy. Trat finally managed to keep a clean sheet as they edged out Khon Kaen 1-0 and the same scoreline earned Rayong United their first victory since Matchday 5 as they beat Sriracha.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Singh Tarua 2-1 Ayutthaya

Mathias Christen's stoppage-time goal earned Singh Tarua three points as both sides finished the match with ten men.

It was a fairly quiet start to proceedings with the hosts coming closest to a goal when Kittipong almost pounced following a fumble by Teerapong in the Ayutthaya goal.

But it was the away side who took the lead as Singh Tarua were robbed of possession in the 43rd minute. A quick counter attack lead by Durosinmi saw the Nigerian skin Ali Diarra before he fired across the box for ex-Thai Port loanee Anusak to knock home.

Singh Tarua quickly got back on level terms when a corner was only partially cleared to Chalermkiat on the edge of the box. His low drive took a deflection off Daniel Melo to equalize.

Ayutthaya seemed content to sit back and soak up pressure early in the second half. A low shot from Christen hit the base of the post while Antonio Vega's strike into the side netting was the closest that the Ancient Warriors came to scoring.

With a quarter of an hour left, it was advantage Ayutthaya as Chalermkiat was ordered off after receiving to yellow cards. Vega and Durosinmi both came close as the guests became more adventurous.

However with four minutes left, Rachanon was given a yellow card for a foul, and then he wouldn't retreat ten yards to allow Ali Diarra to take a quick free kick. The fact that he was taunting Diarra left the referee no other choice than to produce a second yellow card.

Mathias Christen appeared to have drilled home the winner shortly afterwards, but neither the referee or the linesman signalled that the ball had crossed the line despite the celebrations of most inside the PAT Stadium.

A draw would have been a fair result, but it wasn't to be as Christen netted a rebound after Teerapong had parried a Leandro shot into his path.

The PAT Stadium was ecstatic at the end as this last gasp victory could prove pivotal in Singh Tarua's season.

Ayutthaya would have been happy with their performance and application yet will regard the loss as being slightly unlucky.

The best player on the park was Ali Diarra, but I feel I can't award him man of the match after he was skinned far too easily by Durosinmi for the goal. Apart from that, he was immense.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Matchday 18 Preview


Army Utd v Muangthong Utd
Chainat P-P Sisaket
Pattaya Utd v Samut Songkhram
Ratchaburi v Osotspa Saraburi

Bangkok Glass v Songkhla Utd
Bangkok Utd v Police Utd
Chonburi v BEC Tero
Suphanburi v Buriram Utd
TOT v Chiang Rai Utd

This weekend marks the beginning of Leg 2 with all the opening day fixtures being reversed. Teams are now allowed to field their new signings and several new recruits are set to make their debuts this weekend.

The sides in relegation danger have been the most active with Bangkok United and Samut Songkhram currently the busiest two players in the transfer market. The Bangkok Angels splashed the cash buying Thai-American Anthony Ampaipitakwong from Buriram while the experienced trio of Nattaporn, Yai Nilwong and Thritti have been brought in too. Samut Songkhram have pinched a couple of players from the dormant Sisaket and Jo 5 Yards has joined on loan from BEC Tero with Gilbert Koomson returning in the opposite direction to Minburi.

Bottom placed Pattaya have already had a mini clearout to make way for incoming players (and possibly coach Jadet) from Songkhla United. Kriangkhai is the most notable arrival from the south, but it could be too little too late.

Leaders Buriram United have loaned out fringe players Juan Quero to Chonburi and Denis Buschening to BEC Tero with Jesus Berrocal and Bruno Herrero coming in to add to the Spanish contingent at the Thunder Castle.

Muangthong have recalled Chainarong from Army United while Napat has been transferred to Suphanburi. Weera has been sent back to TOT as Kawin is almost fully fit again, and Adnan Barakat has joined Army United. Roland Linz has also been made surplus to requirements and has been told to find a new club.

Other notable deals include Chakrit from Police to Chonburi, Aron da Silva joining Army from Songkhla while Police and Ratchaburi have both made duel signings from abroad. The Dragons have snapped up Columbian striker John Obregon, and José Luis Cordero has arrived from Deportivo Saprissa. Meanwhile, Police United have added experienced Frenchman Michaël Murcy along with Brazilian Pedro Enrique Dos Santos Calcado or "Pedrinho" for short. Promising youngster Pinyo Inpinit has made the step-up from youth side Luk Esan to parent club Police United.

Division 1

Phuket v BBCU
Rayong Utd v Sriracha
Saraburi v Siam Navy
Singh Tarua v Ayutthaya
Trat v Khon Kaen

Air Force v Rayong FC
Bangkok FC v Nakhon Ratchasima
Nakhon Pathom Utd v Krabi
TTM v PTT Rayong

In Division 1, it's the teams bidding to reach the TPL that have made most movements in the window. PTT Rayong and Phuket have already added at least half a dozen players to their squads. Miroslav Toth will team up again with fellow Slovak and former TOT teammate Josef Tirer at PTT Rayong. Phuket meanwhile, are rumoured to have captured Ludovik Takam from Police United after he knocked back a move to Nakhon Ratchasima stating that he wanted to stay in the TPL!

Air Force have brought in reinforcements with the most interesting capture being the broody David le Bras from Rayong United. Valci Junior's move back to the TPL never materialized and he's joined another club (Krabi) in Division 1 relegation danger. The exodus from Rayong United suggests that they are about to throw the towel in on maintaining their first division status.

Singh Tarua, Bangkok FC and Nakhon Ratchasima have made a couple of signings, yet none of them are worth raving about. I'm a bit surprised that Bangkok and Singh Tarua haven't made more moves in the transfer market considering they both have four home games on the spin to kick off Leg 2. This is the time for both clubs to make their move to ensure they can grab that vital third promotion spot.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Toyota League Cup (Last 8 First Leg Review)

Army United 1-0 Nakhon Ratchasima
Buriram Utd 1-0 Udon Thani
Ratchaburi 1-0 Chonburi
Rayong FC 1-1 Luk Tapfah

Army Utd, Buriram Utd and Ratchaburi all take slender 1-0 leads into the second leg while Rayong FC and Luk Tapfah shared a 1-1 draw.
With Udon Thani on the verge of pulling off a momentous 0-0 draw in Buriram, there was a floodlight failure after 87 minutes in the state of the art Thunder Castle stadium. The short delay knocked the regional league out of their stride, and in the 96th minute Chappuis fired home to spare the blushes of the current cup holders. The goal was awarded even though the ball appeared to come of Osmar's outstretched arm in the build up.

Times are tough for Chonburi at this moment and another flat performance saw them lose 1-0 at Ratchaburi. The Dragons had done very little before a Prayat breakaway in the 41st minute set up Saenee to score the only goal of the match. The Sharks had a couple of half chances after the break, but Ratchaburi held out to claim an important clean sheet.

A Ulrich Munze spill 14 minutes from time following a Lindemann free kick allowed Jung Mung Oh to edge Army Utd into a first leg lead. Korat struck the woodwork twice in the first half, but overall reports suggest that Army just about merited the 1-0 win.

Luk Tapfah would certainly have left Rayong happy with a 1-1 draw despite taking a first half lead through Rachan. Tankew Abzizou bulleted home a late header to keep the Wild Horses firmly in the tie. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

FA Cup Draw - Last 16

BEC Tero v PTT Rayong
Muangthong Utd v Phuket
Phatthalung v Chiang Rai Utd
Police v Osotspa Saraburi
Samut Songkhram v Buriram Utd
Singh Tarua v Bangkok Utd
Trat v Bangkok Glass
*Sisaket/Bangkok FC v Army Utd

Ties to be played on Wednesday 10th July

*You're guess is as good as mine as to when this one will be resolved.

Sunday 30 June Review


Army 2-1 BEC Tero
Chainat 1-2 Muangthong Utd
Chonburi 0-0 Osotspa Saraburi
Pattaya 1-3 Police Utd
Ratchaburi 0-0 Samut Songkhram

Muangthong did what they had to do and won 2-1 at Chainat to keep the title race vaguely interesting. A packed Khao Plong Stadium watched Djurovski give MTU a lead via a free kick before Piyaphon scrambled a second. Michael Byrne scored a stunning free kick to reduce the deficit late on.

It was an eventful night at Army as they scored at the death to beat BEC Tero. Nipol pounced to give Army a first half lead. After the interval, Cleiton Silva looked to have levelled but his goal was ruled out for offside. This prompted Tero to stage a walk off before they did eventually level through Apiwan 15 minutes from time. However, they were hit with a sucker punch in injury time as Mongkol finished off a breakaway to win the match for Army.

Pattaya United must be glad to see the back of Leg 1 as another defeat left them rooted to the bottom. The Dolphins were 3-0 down at the break and things got worse at the beginning of the second period when Apinan was ordered off. This prompted an exchange of bottles between rival fans as the game was briefly held up. Order was restored before Dyachenko sweetly volleyed home a consolation.

The matches between Chonburi v Osotspa and Ratchaburi and Samut Songkhram ended goalless. The highlight of the Chonburi match was the final whistle while Koomson was centimeters away from scoring an injury time winner for Samut Songkhram in the western derby.

Division 1

Air Force 1-0 Singh Tarua
Rayong Utd 1-2 BBCU
Saraburi 0-2 Sri Racha
TTM 3-1 Krabi

Air Force's 1-0 win over Singh Tarua moved them onto 40 points and more importantly it gave them a 12 point buffer on fourth place to take into the second leg. The game looked like it was heading for a stalemate until Zezinando scored following some weak goalkeeping.

BBCU have crept back into the promotion picture. They came from behind to win 2-1 at Rayong United with the returning Bouba Abbo netting a 90th minute winner. 

TTM and Sriracha both grabbed vital wins at the bottom end of the table. 152 hardly souls watched TTM come from behind to beat Krabi 3-1. Goals from Wittaya, Niroot and Sohna moved TTM to within touching distance of safety. A Gaston brace gave Sriracha a much needed win and gave them their first success since April.