Football Tribe Thailand
Things got heated at the bottom of the Thai League table when Sukhothai picked up a surprise point away at league leaders Buriram United. The Firebats took the lead via Philippines international Iain Ramsey but were unfortunate to concede a penalty in added time, allowing Andres Tunez tp tuck in his 6th of the season.
Elsewhere PT Prachuap earned themselves valuable breathing space with a convincing 2-0 win over Samut Prakan City. The Killer Wasps are now seven points away from the drop zone with five games remaining. Fellow mid-table sides Trat FC and PTT Rayong, also drew on the weekend, meaning only two points separate PT Prachuap FC (11th) and Trat FC (7th).
At the Thammasat Stadium, Mano Polking came out on top in the battle between two former Thai U23 head coaches, ending Choketawee Promrut’s six-match unbeaten run in charge of Port FC. It was a dull first 45 minutes, with both teams opting for a cautious approach. Luckily (for the home fans), the Angels upped their intensity in the second half and took an early lead when Vander Luiz spun away from Tanaboon Kesarat with ease before finding Chananan Pombubpha at the back post. Everton Gonçalves doubled Bangkok advantage with a header in the 88th minute – the Brazilian defender’s third of the season.
Sunday saw Chiangmai FC escape from the bottom of the table for the first time in five weeks with an incredible 5-1 victory over traveling Nakhon Ratchasima FC. New signing Nattawut Sombatyotha registered two goals and an assist to round off a magnificent performance.
The former youth international and Buriram United academy graduate was once touted as one the country’s’ brightest talents but has seen his development stalled with Ratchaburi FC. A move up north to the Lanna Tigers could be a huge turning point in his career and the 23-year-old certainly backed that up in style against the Swatcat.
Equal on points with Chiangmai FC is Chainat Hornbill, who suffered their third defeat in a row. A brace from Yannick Boli brought Ratchaburi FC back from behind to secure a 2-1 home win.
Dropping to the last place is Suphanburi FC, who succumb to Muangthong United’s attacking prowess, losing 4-1 at the SCG Stadium. The Kirin’s talisman, Heberty Fernandes, caused all sorts of havoc for the visitor’s typically tight defense. However, this time it’s his countryman Derley who delivered the end product – netting midway through both halves. Daisuke Sato and Surach Yooyen also got on the scoresheet for the first time this season.
Last but not least was Chiangrai United visit to Chonburi FC. The Beetles didn’t waste the opportunity to capitalize on Buriram United dropping points a day earlier and ran out 2-0 winners, chopping the gap between themselves and the league leaders to just a solitary point.
Sivakorn Tiatrakul controlled the game from the base of midfield, switching play left and right to perfection. Sasom Pobprasert’s decision to play Datsakorn Thonglao, someone with little work rate, in the no.10 role meant Sivakorn was afforded time and space on numerous occasion. And in the 25th minute, Sivakorn hammered a cutback from the left past keeper Sinthaweechai Hathairattanakool to give Chiangrai the lead. Ailton Silva’s men then remained compact until Brazilian striker Bill Rosimar killed the game off late in the second half.
Once again this season, there is a slipped up at the top of the table. Chiangrai United are now just a single point behind Buriram Untied with 5 games remaining. Meanwhile, only 6 points separate 12th and 16th place. Looks like it’s going to be a two-horse race for the title at the top and a five-team relegation dogfight at the bottom.