Thai League 2 – 2022-2023
Sunday 11 December 2022
Chiang Mai FC 1 Samut Prakan City FC 1
Chiang Mai FC:
No jingle bells here. No ho, ho, ho, Just an ugly game of football.
Made worse by a referee who had neither control nor consistency.
Against an opposition that, at least for this game, had embraced shithousery.
And in front of the head coach, Matt Smith, and his assistant, from Bangkok Glass. On this performance he may want to leave all his loan players in Chiang Mai.
There was a return to one of his old clubs for Decha Sa-Ardchom, a Norman Hunter of Thai football, who as captain for the night had molded the team in his own image.
That is almost all I feel like writing but I guess a few more details are needed.
My regular reader will know that I have beaten the drum about starting Pongrawit and Tawan together. It took until the 17th game; it finally happened; and after 19 minutes they were both involved in opening the scoring with the only moment of quality in the first half.
Before that Fahas had made a smart save low to his left and the referee had set out his stall by failing to punish two poor Samut Prakan challenges before rightly booking Ronnayod for hauling down Pardsakorn outside the penalty area as the winger sped past him.
Nineteen minutes gone and Pongrawit’s run down the right side released Stewart whose chipped cross was too good for either the goalkeeper or two defenders as it looped to Tawan who rose well to nod home at the far post.
Supawat in the Samut Prakan goal was quick to leave his line to save at the feet of Tawan running onto a pass from Kim Bo Yong and then to beat Kim to a long ball forward from Thammayut.
Thammayut was then booked for a challenge on Pardsakorn by the near touchline. Nattapong’s curling left foot ball into the penalty area should probably have been turned in by Wanchat; instead it required good reactions from Fahas to push the bouncing ball out of harm’s way.
The second half opened with the Nigerian defender Aneni being booked for hauling down Stewart 25 yards out from goal. Pongrawit’s freekick was narrowly over the crossbar.
Suchanon’s long run down the left saw the ball break for Tawan whose low left foot cross ricocheted between the goalkeeper and Pongrawit and was scrambled clear in the 6 yard box.
Aneni, already booked, then brought down Suchanon as the home side broke forward. The referee was lenient and Im Chang Kyoon’s free-kick was comfortably caught by Supawat.
Phomthamit squared up to Stewart and Suwannapat went down after an off the ball incident that the officials did not see.
Phommin and Chatchai replaced Tawan and Suchanon with 13 minutes left as CMFC sought to protect their one goal lead. Was this being too negative too soon?
Minutes later a left wing cross was curled in by Nattapong. Fahas stayed on his line and Nonthaput attacked the ball running between Suwit and Sarawan (two other late substitutions) to head into Fahas’ bottom left corner.
There was one injury time chance for CMFC as Chatchai’s little reverse pass released Kim BoYong some 12 yards from goal. Supawat was very quick off his line to block the chance.
Samut Prakan were not pretty; but they were fit and strong and did not back out of a single challenge all night. Supawat in goal was brave and determined.
With nine teams in mid table separated by just five points there is everything to play for in the second half of the season.