Finally, after almost seven months, football returns to the SCG Stadium. The world has changed, and with it Thailand’s football league.
The biggest change is the season will run parallel with European leagues, beginning in September and lasting through May. This change opens up many possibilities and benefits. Now a good portion of games are played through the season of cooler temperatures and clear skies, with less games played during the rainy months.
We also have games through the new year, and when visitors are finally able to travel, overseas fans on holiday can experience the thrill of football in Thailand.
The long break has been a major challenge for players and coaches. With so many months without competitive games, everyone is eager to jump back into the high intensity of a league match. Muangthong United’s head coach Alexandre Gama has said his players are “...highly motivated to win in front of their fans tonight”.
MTUTD - TIME IS ON OUR SIDE
Muangthong United have the youngest team in the league, with many players from the academy brought forward. Youngsters such as Sorawit Panthong (#7) and Patcharapol Inthanee (#16) are just two of the 12 players making the change to the first team this season.
As well, during the shutdown, Muangthong United acquired fromer Thailand national team and former Samut Prakan midfielder, Picha Autra (#37), a formidable talent with goal scoring potential.
Doubtful for tonight’s match is the Kirin #10, Sardor Mirzaev, who has been making his way back to match fitness after a training injury. Said Coach Gama, “It will be a late decision, and if he’s not 100% then we have many talented players to fill the spot.”
Samut Prakan City, or the “SEA FANG” have a solid defensive team led by Thai international Jakkapan Praisuwan (#7). Head coach Masatada Ishii from Japan has also brought with him veteran defender Tatsuya Sakai (#15) and midfielder Yuto Ono (#23) who scored the lone goal in last week’s win.
TIME FOR VICTORY
Playing at the SCG Stadium is a challenge for visiting teams, and despite the need to cap attendance at 25% of capacity, Muanghtong fans everywhere will be looking for a win. Every Muangthong United player knows that when they put on that red home jersey, it is their duty to go all out for victory.
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