2011 AFC Cup with matchday 4 of the group stages


early practice only makes...
Thananuwat Srirasant

Empirical match day four of a group stages marks the start of reveres matches and so it is. Thai Champion Muang Thong has to travel to the Maldives, while Chonburi take on Persipura Jayapura at home.

Chonburi will take on Persipura already this Tuesday. The visitors from Indonesia won the first game against Chonburi by three to nothing and arrived at Thailand as group leaders. Persipuras last league match already dates back a few days and was on 18 April against Persiba Balikpapan. Persipura won 3-1 and is still leading the table of the ISL.

The "Sharks" for their part won last weekends league match against promoted Chiangrai United. Therdsak Chaiman played for the first time after an injury, which however broke up again during the match. In spite he seems fit for the game against Persipura. Ekaphan Inthasen and Natthaphong Samana will be missed because of injury though. Possibly Suphasek Kaikaew will be fielded for Ekaphan and  Arthit Sunthornpit may replace Natthaphong. 3 points seems to be essential for Chonburi if they do not want to hand over the first place to the Indonesian side at early stage. Kick-off is at 19:00. True Sports 3 is going to televise the match.

Like last year, Thai champion Muang Thong United has the pleasure of a short visit to the Maldives. This time the opponent is not VB Sports, it's Victory SC. Despite the club they are face is different, the stadium is the same. The match is going to be played in the Rasmee Dhandu Stadium.
Therefore it was convenient that Muang Thong faced Sriracha FC in last weekends league match. Well the rehearsal did not result in 3 points, but at least Calisto's boys were able to play on artificial turf. Because the stadium in Male exactly contains this surface.

Nevertheless, at the same this brings big worries for Coach Calisto because for injury conditioned reasons. Datsakron Thonglao, Dagno Siaka and Naruphol Ar-Romsawa had to finsih off the first training earlier then scheduled due to slight injuries. Whether they will be available for the game on Wednesday remains to be seen. Teerasil Dangda should be out definitely.

A win would bring MTU in a comfortable position for winning the group, because Hanoi T&T and Tampine of Rover are to meet in the other match. Kick-off time on the Maldives is 16:10, so 18:10 Thai time.

A short news at the end. According to the information from the official Muang Thong Website, Miroslav Toth "nearly died" after suffering a respiratory problem against Sriracha FC. We all hope Mirsolav can recover soon and we wish him all the best.
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