Southeast Asia Thailand

Buriram United Secure Thai FA Cup SF Ticket with Confident Derby Win

Thai giants Buriram United took one step closer to Thai FA Cup glory as they advanced to the competition’s semifinal last Wednesday. Taking on Isan rivals Nongbua Pitchaya at the Chang Arena, Buriram ran out comfortable 4-1 winners with Jonathan Bolingi scoring a brace.

Masatada Ishii’s Thunder Castle host a high-flying Nongbua side who are currently 8th in the Thai League 1 table, not a bad achievement considering that the Gamecocks are playing their first-ever season in the top-flight. The two clubs are separated by just five hours worth of journey by car, raising the stakes of this quarterfinal tie with not only a ticket to the semifinal being put at stake, but also regional pride as Isan’s finest.

Buriram took the lead as early as the 4th minute after Congolese striker Bolingi bundled home a penalty, before Ratthanakorn Maikami made it 2-0 in the 35th minute.

Bolingi then completed his brace in the 57th minute to make it 3-0 for the hosts, before Nongbua pulled one back in the 66th minute thanks to an effort from Barros Tardeli. However, Buriram re-assumed their 3-goal advantage and sealed themselves a ticket to the semifinal after Kenyan striker Ayub Masika rifled home in the 88th minute.

Last Wednesday’s other quarterfinal ties saw third-tier sides Uthai Thani FC and Songkhla FC, the only non-top-flight teams left in the Thai FA Cup this season, being eliminated by Thai League 1 opposition. A late Charlie Clough goal sealed a 1-0 win for Nakhon Ratchasima Mazda away at Uthai Thani, while strugglers Suphanburi managed to see Songkhla off thanks to a solitary goal from Danilo Alves.

Finally, unfancied Police Tero managed to knock BG Pathum United out of the cup after a heated battle that stretched all the way into extra-time at the Boonyachinda Stadium. Former Oita Trinita striker Evandro scored the winner for the Silver Shield Dragons in the 108th minute, with BGPU being forced to end the match with just nine men following red cards for Chatmongkol Thongkiri and Sumanya Purisai.

The draw for the Thai FA Cup semifinal is yet to be conducted, however with regional rivals Buriram and Nakhon Ratchasima in the hat, there’s a good possibility that we’re going to see an even more heated Isan Derby occurring late into the competition.