SCG Muangthong United were held to a 1-1 draw at home against Raj Navy F.C., a result that shows in this league there are no easy points to be won.
Coach Totchtawan Sripan rested centre back Mario Abrante and wing back Tristan Do, knowing in just a few days the club would have to play again away at Sisaket F.C. As well, midfielder Chanathip was unable to play the full match.
The first half finished goalless, with the Kirin having strong control of the pitch. Several scoring changes presented themselves. At just the seventh minute Teerasil’s shot was wide after a nice setup by Chanathip. Later in the half, Cleiton Silva had a hard shot which came back out off Narong, the Navy F.C. keeper, and Chanathip’s responding strike was wide. Another good chance came for Teerasil near the half time marker, when a perfect cross from Peerapat was headed wide.
There were hardly any shots on net from both clubs, and the goals that did come were quick counter-attack passes from the wings to an open forward in the box.
Navy F.C. were to go ahead 1-0 shortly into the second half. It was the classic situation that happens when one team is dominating another. A missed pass led to a fast break down the right wing, and the low, hard cross was initially blocked, but the second chance led to the goal.
SCG Muangthong responded quickly, with Cleiton Silva getting ahead of the defence down the left side, and then electing to feed the ball in to N’dri, who spun and hit the low right footed drive past the keeper.
With 25 minutes remaining the score was once again even, and both clubs sought the go ahead goal. As in the first half, Muangthong looked to work the ball through the defence, often making several passes before having to regroup at the half way line.
The match pace slowed dramatically, as Raj Navy F.C. players seemed to be taking turns flopping onto the pitch with muscle cramps, and the stretcher bearers were given a good workout.
Regardless, Navy F.C. give very little room for the Kirin to move the ball, and successfully shut down any attack.
SCG Muangthong United’s title hopes are now uncertain, and Coach Sripan will no doubt be looking to re-start the good form that characterized the first half of the season. Fans will be seeking this at the next match when the Kirin travel to play Sisaket F.C. Wednesday July 20th.