Picture: Official CMFC
Thai League 2

Sunday 13 November 2022
Chiang Mai FC 2 Trat FC 1

Chiang Mai FC:

Im ChangKyoon
Kim BoYong

Unstoppable. 89 minutes gone. The scores tied. Veljko Filipovic was a man on a mission.

His header from Im ChangKyoon’s corner was met with a terrific save from Suppawat, in the Trat goal. The ball was cleared but only back to Im on the left side. His curling cross back into the area was met with a second towering header from Filipovic this time beating Suppawat.

Celebration time. Off came the Filipovic shirt as he ran to the home bench. A mixture of relief and unadulterated joy.

There were still four minutes of nervy injury time but after a second half performance of constant pressure and attacking football Chiang Mai were not going to give up the hard-earned three points.

An hour earlier, 0-1 down at half time, the atmosphere had felt very different.

Gustavsson was on the bench with the fit again Kim BoYong preferred up front. Suwit returned as a defensive left back. Pongrawit and Im ChangKyoon returned from injury

The first half was dire. Trat were allowed room to play – and did so without ever really threatening despite the efforts of Dos Santos down the left side.

Until, that is, the 41st minute when a left side corner from Soukaphone was floated towards the six yard line. Fahas somehow, and there are no excuses this week, managed to drop a simple catch behind him where the Trat centre half Panuwat, was able to tap in and give the visitors the lead.

M150 were at the stadium handing out energy drinks before the game. Maybe CMFC saved theirs for half time. They emerged for the second half like a team transformed.

Sarawut came on for Chatchai and went to left back. This allowed Suwit to move to an attacking left side of midfield. Within two minutes of the restart Suwit’s 20 yard drive arrowed at the far post before Suppawat made the first of a series of fine saves.

Suppawat then leaped like a salmon to his left to catch Pongrawit’s 30 yard free kick.

All of the pressure came from the home side. Three successive CMFC corners. Trat were on the rack. Suppawat came for the third and got a good right hook to the ball. But it flew to Pongrawit outside the penalty area; his header forward found Ronnayod 22 yards out from goal. A turn and a powerful right foot shot inside the far post. One of the best goals that we will see at the Municipal Stadium this season.

Trat briefly came to life – a far post header was blocked by Fahas and a Dos Santos shot clipped Filipovic and deflected for a corner.

The 89th minute – cometh the hour cometh the big Serbian defender – his first header was a standing jump. The second was after a run from the edge of the penalty area to power in the header from seven yards. No one could have stopped him, or the header.

There is a REVO cup tie against Sukhothai FC on Wednesday – both teams to field under strength teams. On Saturday CMFC play at Rajpracha in the League. This win should put the season back on track and be a base for a strong finish to the first half of the season.