League Cup 2011: A final remake

Thai League Cup and FA Cup
Though we are already in 2012, however, this Saturday the League Cup final 2011 is on the schedule. Besides, the match between Buriram-PEA and Thai Port marks the end of a nearly 12 month season.

Usually the Thai FA Cup final should form the end of every season in Thailand. Nevertheless, in this season 2011 a lot of things are different. Thus the Toyota League Cup final marks this year season conclusion. And this Saturday we can see a new edition of the 2010 final between Buririam-PEA and Thai Port. The signs for the final is like those of 2010. Buriram is deemed to be high favorite while Thai Port only remains with the role of the underdog. Not much of a change compared to a season ago. But it was Thai Port who last time grabbed the cup.

In 2010 Buriram finished it's season as vice-champion, and Port was running in fourth. After the current seasons ending, this time the Thai Premier League Champion, Buriram-PEA is going to meet a seventh ranked side from Bangkok.

Though here it concerns a cup final, and cups ties have, as everybody knows, their "own laws". But hardly somebody has doubt that the League Cup will end up in Isaan. Newin Chidchob's team conceded just one defeat, in Siskaet, over the whole last season. A well earned national triumph. Footballing wise there is no better side at the moment than the one trained by coach of the year Attaphol Buspakom. Powerful, dynamic gameplay and   above all powered by foreign players like leading goalscorer Frank Ohandza distinguishes the team from the rest. For latter the club had put down an offer from Helsingborgs IF this week.

It appears, that the strength of the Buriram side never went out and one constantly is in the situation to put another log on the fire. At last Muang Thong United had to find out this on the hard way during the Thai FA cup final. Though the champion of 2009 and 2010 could counter hold till extra time, however, in the 108' minute Frank Acheampong scored the goal of the night. Few weeks before both sides met in the league and the game ended with the same result, which was 1-0. This time by a goal in injury time of the regular playing time. Muang Thong simply could not stand firm to the steady pressure.

Hence, the tactics, or hope of Thai Port coach Thongchai Sukkokee might hardly rise. Holding on to a goalless draw as long as possible, typical underdog tactic, and made it to the 2nd half. In anyway it will become a strange game for Thai port. Some players are going to make their last game for the financially extremely groggy club. Including cup heroes Swa Moise and goalkeeper Ulrich Munze. But also others. For both Africans Moise and Munze the contract was already discontinued virtually, other players are forwarded. Nevertheless, the Khlong Toei troop is still a cup-experienced one. It is the third final in three years for the club after the Thai FA Cup in 2009 and the League cup in 2010. Both, could be won at the end.

Though the financial difficulties of the club is not solved. However, finally, the players received their wages these days. Some players have not seen any money for about four months. One of them, Scotsman Steven Robb. He will play his first cup final of his career. Arriving in Thailand beginning of last year he had problems to adopt, but found his way into the line-up recently. He never lost patience. Seldom a bad word about the back payments was to be heard from him. On the contrary, he buckled down. We just name him here, on behalf for many Thai Port players.

Buriram steers for the complete triumph. The treble. But Thai port also steers for the treble, winning three cup in three consecutive years. And we know, "dogs" can bite.

Tickets for the game are available at the gates, and the match is to broadcasted on Channel 3 and Siam Spot TV (true CH 69). For a further comprehensive preview, of the final, spot on for the Thai Port Blog.
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