Thais expect tough tussle with Mongolia www.bangkokpost.com
Thailand U23 team head coach Worrawoot Srimaka on Sunday warned his players not to take their Group J opener of the AFC U23 Championship qualifiers against hosts Mongolia lightly.
The match will kick off at 10am (Thai time) and will be broadcast live on Channel One 31 and AIS Play.
Worrawoot told a pre-match news conference yesterday that he was wary of the Mongolian team's counter-attacking skills.
"I am sure it will be an exciting match during which we would need to be on our toes all the time, especially in the midfield and defence," said the Thai coach.
"Mongolia have improved a lot, but we have the potential to do well. We have the strikers who can deliver three points to us.
"The first match of any event is always important and the key for us will be to avoid conceding an early goal."
Meanwhile, Thailand team manager Nualphan Lamsam has promised a one million baht incentive for the Thai U23 team if they could win today's game against Mongolia.
"The players look really excited but it will be a difficult game for us because the hosts would also want to start off with a victory," Nualphan said. "I have high hopes for a win."
The Thais also submitted their final line-up of 23 players to the organisers yesterday. The team are led by England-based players Thanawat Suengchittawon and Benjamin Davis.
Second-half goals from Bordin Phala and Javier Patino gave Port a crucial 2-0 home victory over PT Prachuap in Thai League 1 last night.
Both sides had opportunities to break the deadlock in the first half but it was Port who dominated for the most part.
The home team's efforts finally led to the first goal for Port in the 78th minute when Nelson Bonilla set up Bordin for an unstoppable header. Pakorn Prempak created the second six minutes later when his lob was guided into the net by Patino.
Also last night, former champions Buriram United rallied to edge hosts Ratchaburi 2-1 to continue their stay at the top of the table.
In Saturday night's late game, Chiang Rai United struggled to claim a 1-0 victory over promoted Khon Kaen United.