Southeast Asia

SEA Players Who Are Similar to European Stars

In today’s feature, we look at some Southeast Asian players whose style of football bears some resemblance to established European football stars:


Name: Bui Tien Dung

Age: 22

Position: Goalkeeper

Club: Hanoi FC

Similar Player: Petr Cech

Bui Tien Dung admired Petr Cech from a young age when he was at the Thanh Hoa academy. When playing in professional tournaments, he played in the same style as Cech. He is good at one-on-one situations against the opponent striker and has good reflexes. His Instagram also named "cech_tien_dung"


Name: Sakkarin Chanyotha

Age: 30

Position: Striker/Attacking Midfielder

Club: None

Similar Player: Wayne Rooney

"When we were kids I couldn't even touch him. He was so gifted - and have a powerful shot in him too. It's amazing watching him train every day." Thai national team striker Teerasil Dangda spoke of "the best Thai footballer" he's played with. 16-year-old Sakkarin Chanyotha was the highest-paid teenager during the mid-2000s when Tero signed him up. But money and fame got to his head and lack of discipline followed. Fitness issues and injuries stopped him from reaching anywhere near his potential. The Thai Rooney has now retired and taken up a coaching role at an academy in his home town of Kanchanaburi.


Name: Andik Vermansyah

Age: 27

Position: Right Midfielder

Club: Madura United

Similar Player: Bernardo Silva

Andik may have good pace, brilliant positioning and shooting accuracy. But Andik is not a skillful footballer who often does tricks and cuts inside like Raheem Sterling or Mohamed Salah. Instead, he looks more like Bernardo Silva, who finds space and runs down the wing. He also helps maintain the game tempo and makes assists rather than push himself to score goals.


Name: Safiq Rahim

Age: 32

Position: Central Midfielder

Club: Melaka United

Similar Player: Luka Modric

Safiq Rahim was one of the top 'trequartista' or attacking midfielders when he played for JDT, but with age, he has flourished in a central midfield role as a deep-lying playmaker who conducts the attack and creates chances for teammates. This is a similar transformation as the one undertaken by Luka Modric when he moved to Real Madrid.