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Topic Summary

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 19, 2017, 08:34:48 AM »

Swatcat's opponents in the first round of the FA Cup, Nakhon Si Thammarat currently play in Division 3 (south).
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 19, 2017, 08:26:59 AM »

The first round of the Thai FA Cup takes place on wednesday 21st June. The Swatcats take on Nakhon Si Thammmarat at the 80th Anniversary Stadium. Kick off is 19.00 hours.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 19, 2017, 07:53:44 AM »

Match Day 18 Line up
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 19, 2017, 07:52:56 AM »

Match Day 18 Stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 19, 2017, 07:51:45 AM »

Dateline 18th June 2017 – Match day 18.

FT Police Tero 3  NRFC 1

The second leg of the 2017 season kicks off this weekend with the Fire Dragons welcoming the Swatcats from Korat for this mid-table clash.

Former Swatcat keeper Kampon was in goal for Tero and the Swatcats started with new signing Rangel up front. The Swatcats started brightly with an interchange between Rangel and Adiyiah ending with a low shot on target from the Ghanaian.

In the 11th minute Weerayut Kayem volleyed in after a fine move to give Tero the lead but with the visitors passing the ball around confidently one sensed that they could strike back and in the 16th minute Pina went close with a 22 yard drive. Minutes later Chanatphol’s long range shot went narrowly over the bar.
In the 29th minute a superb move terminated with a snap shot from 6 yards by Adiyiah that was well saved by the Tero keeper and although the visitors were having a lot of possession, Tero looked dangerous on the break.

The Swatcats equalized (deservedly so) in the 37th minute when debutant Paulo Rangel  deflected a shot in with a clever back heel flick but almost immediately Tero broke forward and N’Dri lobbed in smartly to regain the lead.

The second half began with Igbonefo heading just over from a Pina free kick, Tero countered with a low drive going inches wide. The Swatcats were now pressing for an equalizer as Tero seemed to tire and in the 64th minute the Swatcats were awarded a penalty for a trip in the box but Pina’s kick was well saved by keeper Kampon.
The visitors continued to press but their chances of a point were dented when Chalermpong was shown a red card for a second bookable offence - an exceedingly harsh decision in my opinion!!

N’Dri went close with a header in the 77th minute in a rare second half chance for the hosts as the Swatcat’s second half dominance failed to yield the vital equalizer. In the 91st minute Tero were awarded a penalty for a push. The penalty was converted by N’Dri to give Tero an undeserved 3-1 lead.

Another decent performance (sorry, I sound like a broken record!!) and the performance probably merited a point. The Swatcats surely cannot go down if they continue to perform like this but they have to pick up points against lesser teams if they are to survive. Rangel looks like a useful acquisition and could form a formidable force up front with Adiyiah. Defensively the team looks sound and midfield is passing the ball around well - quite honestly, I am at a loss to work out why our performances are not yielding more points.

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 17, 2017, 07:56:49 AM »

The Swatcat's game V Tero will be shown on Truesports 6, KO 18.00 sunday 18th june.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 15, 2017, 04:01:42 PM »

The TPL is dropping to 16 teams in 2019, hence there will be 5 teams relegated next season. Should we Swatcat’s fans be worried (that is if we survive this year)? I certainly believe so. I think it would be very difficult for the team to survive a 5 team drop with the current squad.

In another rule change, the foreign quota from next year will be 3 non-asian, 1 asian and 1 asean. Victor Igbonefo will qualify as an asean player but at present we have no Asians in our quota and 4 non asian – changes ahead???
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 13, 2017, 08:28:26 AM »

The Thai Premier League recommences this weekend with The Swatcats travelling to Bangkok to take on Police Tero (AKA BEC Tero Sasana). This mid table clash will be a tight encounter. With Tero stalling after a bright start to their season the Swatcats will be challenging for at least a point.

This match (KO 18.00 Sunday 18th June, TV coverage TBC) should see the league debut of recent signing Paulo Rangel – what price a debut goal.

Thaiwolf prediction; Away win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 11, 2017, 08:05:34 AM »

Last night’s friendly against Si Saket was abandoned after 55 minutes due to continuous torrential rain. The Swatcats were leading 2-1 at the time with a brace from Adiyiah. The match saw the debut of striker Paulo Rangel. He looked useful and made some great contributions to the team’s performance. He is tall and has “presence” and I think he will score goals when the season recommences.
Posted by: nan
« on: June 07, 2017, 01:29:06 PM »

info :)
Posted by: nan
« on: June 07, 2017, 01:28:28 PM »

for the
Posted by: nan
« on: June 07, 2017, 01:27:24 PM »

thanks
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 07, 2017, 09:06:35 AM »

New signing Paulo Rangel in training yesterday.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 07, 2017, 09:05:38 AM »

Swatcats skipper Chalermpong won his first Thai cap last night against Uzbekistan.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 04, 2017, 08:21:22 AM »

With captain Chalermpong being called into the Thai National squad and keeper Saranon being named in the “Goals Team of the first leg”, it is no wonder our defensive record is so good. I am even changing my opinion on Victor Igbonefo who has been ever present this season….what a pity we can’t score goals. Perhaps new signing Paulo Rangel can redress the balance.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: June 04, 2017, 08:20:50 AM »

The Swatcats have signed Brazilian striker Paulo Rangel.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 30, 2017, 01:24:59 PM »

The Thai League now takes a couple of week’s break, (to accommodate the Thai National team’s fixtures against Uzbekistan and UAE). The League recommences on the weekend of 17-18th June.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 29, 2017, 07:55:58 AM »

Match Day 17 Stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 29, 2017, 07:54:55 AM »

Dateline 28th May 2017 – Match day 17.

 FT Bangkok Glass 1 NRFC 0

The Swatcats took on the Glass Rabbits in this end of Leg 1 fixture, hoping to ease themselves further clear of the relegation zone.
Glass started brightly with some fine passing movements but the visitors eased themselves into the game and in the 14th minute Akekanat fired in a shot after a superb solo run. With the home team playing the more accomplished football, the Swatcat defence was coping well as the home team pressed.
  With the Swatcats looking useful on the break Naruphol went close with a drive from 20 yards and on 31 minutes Adiyiah nearly caught out the keeper with a snap shot. Glass countered with a shot from Chaowat drifting wide on 37 minutes and a drive from Campos that was well saved by the visitor’s keeper.

Honours even at half time, with the visitors giving a good account of themselves. Glass probably just edged the half but the Swatcats did have their chances.

The second half opened with Adiyiah firing over with the goal at his mercy after a defensive error - a guilt edged chance squandered!! Minutes later Adiyiah was again guilty of a glaring miss when his shot scuffed the post. The visitors were now on top but Bangkok Glass still looked dangerous when probing forward and a couple of long range chances were created.
The visitors began to defend too deep on the hour mark, inviting the home team to attack in waves and one wondered if the inevitable home goal would come. Surachat went close in the 69th minute then Campos shot wide but the visitor’s defence continued to hold firm.

In what was now becoming almost constant pressure, the Swatcats were clinging to their valuable point with great tenacity but in the 81st minute Bangkok Glass went ahead when Chatree fired in from 6 yards.

Adido’s two second half misses cost us the match and I know I am sounding like a stuck record but yet another decent performance against class opposition - the defence looked sound and build up in midfield was crisp and constructive but we continue to struggle with the all important aspect of football - scoring goals. I’m asking again - a big target man in the transfer window please!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 26, 2017, 08:53:11 AM »

Sorry I am late posting. The leg 2 fixtures were only announced 3 days ago (TIT), then I had to obtain an english version. There are breaks for NT fixtures and don't forget cup matches will have to be dovetailed into the calendar.

Leg 2 Fixtures 2017

Matchday 18
17 June
17:45     Ratchaburi v Ubon UMT United
18:00     Suphanburi v   Port FC
19:00     Chonburi   v   Pattaya United
19:00     Buriram United v  Navy
20:00     Bangkok Glass   v   Super Power Samut Prakan
18 June
18:00     Bangkok United v Thai Honda
18:00     BEC Tero Sasana v Nakhon Ratchasima
19:00     Sisaket v Chiang Rai United
19:00     Sukhothai v Muangthong United

Matchday 19
24 June
17:45     Ubon UMT United v Suphanburi
18:00     Chiang Rai United v Ratchaburi
19:00     Pattaya United v Buriram United
19:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Chonburi United
20:00     Sisaket v Bangkok Glass
25 June
18:00     Muangthong United v BEC Tero Sasana
18:00     Thai Honda v Navy
19:00     Port v Bangkok United
19:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Sukhothai

Matchday 20
28 June
17:45     BEC Tero Sasana v Super Power Samut Prakan
17:45     Pattaya United v Nakhon Ratchasima
18:00     Buriram United v Thai Honda
19:00     Bangkok United v Ubon UMT United
19:00     Muangthong United v Chonburi
19:00     Navy v    Port
19:00     Ratchaburi v Bangkok Glass
20:00     Suphanburi v Chiang Rai United
20:00     Sukhothai v Sisaket

Matchday 21
1 July
17:45     Ratchaburi v Sukhothai
18:00     Chiang Rai United v Bangkok United
19:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Buriram United
19:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Chonburi
20:00     Bangkok Glass v Suphanaburi
2 July
18:00     Ubon UMT United v Navy
18:00     Sisaket v BEC Tero Sasana
19:00     Port v Thai Honda
19:00     Muangthong United v Pattaya United

Matchday 22
5 July
17:45     Thai Honda v Ubon UMT United
17:45     Pattaya United v Super Power Samut Prakan
18:00     Chonburi v Sisaket
18:00     Buriram United v Port
19:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Muangthong United
19:00     Bangkok United v Bangkok Glass
19:00     BEC Tero Sasana v Ratchaburi
20:00     Suphanburi v Sukhothai
20:00     Navy v Chiang Rai United

Matchday 23
8 July
17:45     Bangkok Glass v Navy
18:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Nakhon Ratchasima
19:00     Suphanburi v BEC Tero Sasana
19:00     Sukhothai v Bangkok United
20:00     Ratchaburi v Chonburi
9 July
18:00     Sisaket v Pattaya United
18:00     Chiang Rai United v Thai Honda
19:00     Ubon UMT United v Port
19:00     Muangthong United v Buriram United

Matchday 24
29 July
17:45     Bangkok United v BEC Tero Sasana
18:00     Chonburi v Suphanburi
19:00     Thai Honda v Bangkok Glass
19:00     Pattaya United v Ratchaburi
20:00     Buriram United v Ubon UMT United
30 July
18:00     Muanthong United v Super Power Samut Prakan
18:00     Navy v Sukhothai
19:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Sisaket
19:00     Port v Chiang Rai United

Matchday 25
5 August
17:45     Chiang Rai United v Ubon UMT United
18:00     Suphanburi v Pattaya United
19:00     Bangkok Glass v Port
19:00     Bangkok United v Chonburi
20:00     Ratchaburi v Nakhon Ratchasima
6 August
18:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Buriram United
18:00     BEC Tero Sasana v Navy
19:00     Sukhothai v Thai Honda
19:00     Sisaket v Muangthong United

Matchday 26
9 August
19:00     Chonburi v Thai Honda

Matchday 27
10 September
17:45     Nakhon Ratchasima v Suphanburi
17:45     Ubon UMT United v Bangkok Glass
18:00     Pattaya United v Bangkok United
18:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Sisaket
19:00     Buriram United v Chiang Rai United
19:00     Muangthong United v Ratchaburi
19:00     Navy v Chonburi
20:00     Port v Sukhothai
20:00     Thai Honda v BEC Tero Sasana

Matchday 28
16 September
17:45   BEC Tero Sasana v Port
18:00     Sisaket v Buriram United
19:00     Sukhothai v Ubon UMT United
20:00     Bangkok United v Nakhon Ratchasima
17 September
18:00     Bangkok Glass v Chiang Rai United
18:00     Navy v Pattaya United
19:00     Suphanburi v Muangthong United
19:00     Ratchaburi v Super Power Samut Prakan

Matchday 29
20 September
17:45     Super Power Samut Prakan v Suphanburi
17:45     Port v Chonburi
18:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Navy
18:00     Chiang Rai United v Sukhothai
19:00     Ubon UMT United v BEC Tero Sasana
19:00     Sisaket v Ratchaburi
19:00     Thai Honda v Pattaya United
20:00     Muangthong United v Bangkok United
20:00     Buriram United v Bangkok Glass

Matchday 30
23 September
17:45     Bangkok United v Super Power Samut Prakan
18:00     Sukhothai v Bangkok Glass
19:00     Suphanburi v Sisaket
19:00     BEC Tero Sasana v Chiang Rai United
20:00     Navy v Muangthong United
24 September
18:00     Thai Honda v Nakhon Ratchasima
18:00     Chonburi v Ubon UMT United
19:00     Pattaya United v Port
19:00     Ratchaburi v Buriram United

Matchday 31
14 October
17:45     Ratchaburi v Suphanburi
17:45     Muangthong United v Thai Honda
18:00     Bangkok Glass v BEC Tero Sasana
18:00     Port v Nakhon Ratchasima
18:00     Chiang Rai United v Chonburi
19:00     Buriram United v Sukhothai
19:00     Sisaket v Bangkok United
20:00     Ubon UMT United v Pattaya United
20:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Navy

Matchday 32
22 October
17:45     Port v Muangthong United
17:45     Navy v Sisaket
18:00     Pattaya United v Chiang Rai United
18:00     Chonburi v Bangkok Glass
19:00     Suphanburi v Buriram United
19:00     BEC Tero Sasana v Sukhothai
19:00     Bangkok United v Ratchaburi
20:00     Thai Honda v Super Power Samut Prakan
20:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Ubon UMT United

Matchday 33
8 November
17:45     Super Power v Port
17:45     Bangkok Glass v Pattaya United
18:00     Chiang Rai United v Nakhon Ratchasima
18:00     Suphanburi v Bangkok United
18:00     Ratchaburi v Navy
19:00     Sisaket v Thai Honda
19:00     Buriram United v BEC Tero Sasana
20:00     Ubon UMT United v Muangthong United
20:00     Sukhothai v Chonburi

Matchday 34
11 November
18:00     Navy v Suphanburi
18:00     Pattaya United v Sukhothai
18:00     Thai Honda v Ratchaburi
18:00     Port v Sisaket
18:00     Ubon UMT United v Super Power Samut Prakan
12 November
18:00     Muangthong United v Chiang Rai United
18:00     Bangkok United v Buriram United
18:00     Chonburi v BEC Tero Sasana
18:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Bangkok Glass

Matchday 35
18 November
18:00     Chonburi v Buriram United
18:00     Suphanburi v Bangkok United
18:00     Pattaya United v BEC Tero Sasana
18:00     Thai Honda v Suphanburi
18:00     Nakhon Ratchasima v Sukhothai
18:00     Ratchaburi v Port
18:00     Muangthong United v Bangkok Glass
18:00     Ubon UMT United v Sisaket
18:00     Super Power Samut Prakan v Chiang Rai United

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 22, 2017, 08:43:38 AM »

In the last round of fixtures of Leg 1 of the 2017 season the Swatcats travel to the Capitol to take on title hopefuls Bangkok Glass. (Sunday 28th May KO 19.00, TV coverage TrueSports HD2). This will be a tough challenge for the Swatcats but I expect that  they may fight for a point.
The season now takes a break before the commencement of Leg 2.

Thaiwolf prediction; Draw.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 21, 2017, 09:44:06 AM »

Match Day 16 Stats

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 21, 2017, 09:43:03 AM »

Dateline 20th May 2017 – Match day 16.

 FT NRFC 0 Chang Rai 1

An early kick off in this encounter and despite grandstand tickets being reduced from 150bt to 80bt, the match only managed to attract 6571 spectators. One wonders however if this reduction in price was well publicised - I for one did not know about it!!

As the match progressed the Swatcats certainly matched the endeavour of the visitors but Chang Rai looked more crisp and precise when going forward and certainly more confident with their passing.
They broke quickly and with pace and in the 6th minute Felipe Azevedo went close from 5 yards - an early wake up call for the hosts. The Swatcats countered with a header from Akekanat that went just wide.
Dominic Adiyiah was, as usual, the host’s main threat and he drew a fine save from the keeper with an angled drive but despite all the huff and puff shown by the hosts they looked unlikely to break though, with a couple of weak attempts their only reward.

Chang Rai continued to look dangerous and in the 26th minute Suriya headed over and as the first half drew to a close, a superb 25 yard effort from Raphael thundered against the bar. One wondered at half time “how long before Chang Rai open the scoring?”

The second half opened with Chang Rai immediately on the offensive and Saranon brought off an excellent save from a close range header - one wondered however why an attacking player was left unmarked in the 6 yard area.
Korat’s response was a long range effort from Chanatphon and a real chance from close range by Velkoski but again despite great effort, there was very little real penetration.
In the 56th minute, Felipe stuck an angled shot that was deflected rather fortuitously onto the post as Chang Rai strived to open their account. Adiyiah meanwhile shot narrowly wide in an otherwise lack lustre second half performance from the Swatcats.

In the 79th minute the ultimate and decisive demise of the hosts when Chang Rai went ahead with a crisp, close range finish from Felipe - a disappointing end for the hosts but a deserved reward for Chang Rai’s efforts. They could have gone two up with a shot that was well saved by Saranon minutes later and at the other end a Dominic Adityiah cross caused panic in the Chang Rai defence as Korat looked for an unlikely equalizer.

Tonight the Swatcats were beaten by a more polished and superior side. Another decent performance and the team’s effort cannot be faulted but I reiterate - we are just ordinary and really if we are to improve we need a good old “kick up the arse” and someone who can score goals. I cannot understand why we have not filled our foreign player quota - surely a big target man must be on our radar.
 Only 2 wins at home is worrying and if a team cannot pull in the points at home, the team is only going in one direction!! Equally worrying is the obvious disenchantment of the fans that appear to be shunning the club - to be frank, with disappointing home performances, who can blame them!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 18, 2017, 08:02:17 AM »

Chang Rai United make the long journey south to take on the Swatcats this weekend, (Saturday 20th May KO 17.45 TV coverage TS2). The free spending Beetles had been some pundit’s favourites to win the league this season but a couple of poor performances have recently dented their hopes of success.

Thaiwolf prediction; Draw.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 18, 2017, 08:01:27 AM »

Match Day 15 Stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 18, 2017, 08:00:09 AM »

Dateline 17th May 2017 – Match day 15.

Ubon UMT United 1 FT NRFC 3
Two sides were battling for Isaan “bragging rights” in tonight’s encounter in Ubon. The visitors shocked the home side in the 5th minute when Chakrit volleyed home after a Pina free kick was parried by the home keeper.
Ubon struck back quickly when they equalized on 10 minutes when an unmarked Nebihi slotted home from 10 yards. A minute later Chakrit countered with a fine drive which was well saved.

After this explosive start, the match settled with both sides probing with defences looking vulnerable. Adiyiah - as usual was The Swatcat’s main threat going forward - ably supported by Chakrit.
Velkoski drew a good save from the keeper with a 20 yard drive on 23 minutes as the Swatcats swarmed forward in what was looking like a very open game. Pina then stuck a 35 yard free kick which was again parried by the keeper but the ball was scrambled clear.

On 36 minutes, a low corner was prodded home by Velkoski to give the visitors a deserved first half lead. A decent first half by the Swatcats. They looked very fluid going forward but can the defence hold on and prevent an equalizer??

The second half kicked off with Thaiwolf hoping that the Swatcats do not do the usual and sit back inviting the opposition to attack. Ubon went straight into attacking mode with Nebihi drawing a fine save from the visitor’s keeper then a header from a free kick went narrowly wide.
In what was already looking like a rearguard action, an equalizer was looking likely with the defence sitting too deep.

What do I know? The Swatcats broke forward with pace and Adiyiah fired in from 16 yards - 3-1. Chakrit nearly made it 4-1 with a snap shot in the 64th minute as Ubon’s heads began to drop.
On 70 minutes Pina sent a free kick inches over in a rare foray forward as Ubon pressed for a second goal.
With the defence soaking up tepid pressure from the home side, the Swatcats were cruising towards a deserved victory when Kantapol was sent off for a second yellow in the 83rd minute. From the resulting free kick the home side struck the bar with an 8 yard snap shot. Minutes later Nebihi headed over as the Swatcats soaked up some late pressure.

On 91 minutes Velkoski spurned a golden opportunity when he broke clear. He chose to pass rather than take a shot and the ball was cleared. This could have easily been a 5-1 victory

A most satisfying performance and a great 3 points tonight. I have to ask “Why can’t they do this every week?” Ubon are a useful side and this was no fluke. We looked likely to score goals tonight from the start and with the defence performing ably this was a complete team performance.
Good news to report at last – now for Chang Rai !!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 15, 2017, 08:18:06 AM »

The Swatcats venture down the road into deeper Isaan when they take on Tier 1 newcomers and fellow Isaan challengers Ubon UMT United on Wednesday 17th May (KO 19.00, TV coverage Truesports 7)
The Eagles, under English coach Scott Cooper, have had a successful start to their inaugural season in the Premier League and will provide a tough challenge to the men from Korat.

Thaiwolf prediction; Draw.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 15, 2017, 08:17:22 AM »

Match Day 14 Stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 15, 2017, 08:16:09 AM »

Dateline 14th May 2017 – Match day 14.

 FT NRFC 0 Port FC 0

Port FC were the guests at the 80th Anniversary Stadium this weekend. With the pitch conditions not conducive to a pretty short passing game, my early thought was “who will better adapt to the conditions tonight?”

On a heavy pitch and before a crowd of 5835 the hosts opened brightly with Chakrit incorrectly ruled off side with the goal at his mercy on 6 minutes, seconds later Akekanat shot wildly over from 12 yards. There then followed a series of crosses and a period of pressure but the Swatcats were unable to convert.
Port were looking pretty tame on their forays forward and 20 minutes in, the hosts were well on top.

In the 26th minute after a frenetic melee in the Port 6 yard box, the ball was cleared then Velkoski drew a smart save from the keeper with an angled drive. From the resulting corner Akekanat headed narrowly wide.

On 35 minutes Chanatphon shot just wide from 20 yards then Adiyiah drove into the keeper’s midriff. In now almost constant pressure Adiyiah again went close then Velkoski was just wide from 12 yards.

A decent first half showing from the Swatcats but nothing to show for all their pressure - a cliché but it was all one way traffic - one hopes the team will not be punished later!!

The second half began with Pakorn going close for Port and minutes later a good chance was spurned as Tana Chanabut shot over - Port seemed to have woken up!!
In the 55th minute an excellent through ball put Akekanat clear but the keeper parried the shot and the ball was cleared.
Port were getting forward more and gaining confidence but still unable to create a clear chance but with Josimar always looking likely to cause problems for the host’s defence. In the 73rd minute Port went close when a near post header was scrambled away.

In the 79th minute Velkoski misdirected a header following a decent cross from Akekanat as the Swatcats pressed for a late winner. Port countered with a late break which put the home keeper under pressure,

The team gave it a good go this evening creating many chances in the first half however the inability to convert pressure into goals continues to be a problem. Second half they allowed a weak Port team to get back into the game - a game that should have been put beyond Port in the first half.
The Swatcats will not go down based on this performance but how long will the long suffering fans have to put up with these disappointing results.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 08, 2017, 08:19:05 AM »

The Swatcats welcome Port FC to the 80th Anniversary Stadium this weekend (Sunday 14th May KO 18.00 TV coverage Truesports 7). An inconsistent start to the campaign for Port, producing euphoria then despair amongst their fans but with the Swatcats being the draw specialists one is tempted to suggest that a draw may be on the cards. I am going to stick my rather fragile neck out and go for a home win.

Thaiwolf prediction; Home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 07, 2017, 10:43:16 AM »

Maelstrom halts Tier 1 match in Korat.

The Tier 1 match between Nakhon Ratchasima FC and Thai Honda FC was briefly halted after a monsoon like shower hit the 80th Anniversary Stadium.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 07, 2017, 10:42:12 AM »

Match Day 13 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 07, 2017, 10:40:39 AM »

Dateline 6th May 2017 – Match day 13.

 FT NRFC 1 Thai Honda Latkrabang 0

Mazda Swatcats revved up to outpace the Bangkok based Thai Honda in this potential relegation battle.  The attendance was 4227.

The hosts opened brightly, creating their first chance in the first minute when Kirati Keawsombat drew a fine save from the keeper after good work from Adiyiah.
In the 10th minute Jesus shot over from 18 yards after a fine break forward - an early warning for the hosts!! The Swatcats immediately countered when Athibordee curled an angled shot just wide of the post.

In the 19th minute the Swatcats broke the deadlock when Athibordee stroked home from 12 yards after a fine flowing movement and then in the 29th minute a brilliant charge forward from Chakrit produced a drive which drifted just over the bar.
In the 34th minute a further warning for the hosts as an unmarked Jesus headed just wide then Adiyiah caused panic in the opponent’s defence with a mazy run into the box ending with a Chakrit effort being blocked.
Although the hosts were “bossing” the match during the first half, Thai Honda broke forward effectively - producing real chances in the 16th and 26th minutes - and certainly stretched the Swatcat’s defence, which looked fragile, at times. A half in which both sides created chances - maybe due to two equally weak defences.

The second half began with the hosts again on the front foot with Kirati Keawsombat charging forward only to be unceremoniously brought down just outside the box preventing a clear scoring chance. Unfortunately Kirati’s fall seemed to have seriously damaged his arm and he was stretchered off in great pain - sportingly many Thai Honda players helped to remove the gurney from the pitch.
The resulting free kick from Pinawas well saved.

In the 57th minute, Honda scored a headed goal that was wrongly, in my opinion, given as offside and with advertising boards being scattered by the maelstrom and thunder claps beckoning, the teams were taken off the field of play after an early monsoon shower hit the 80th Anniversary Stadium. Fans flocked to gain cover in the main stand but a sudden wind change gave everyone present in the stand a thorough soaking!!

The game recommenced after 20 minutes and as the game descended into farce like conditions on the waterlogged pitch, the Swatcats were able to hold on to their slender lead despite Thai Honda going close in the 65th minute and again in the 77th minute. The Swatcats themselves may have increased their lead with a Pina drive.

An invaluable 3 points for sure but let’s not get carried away. Thai Honda, despite the fact that they created many chances are not a strong side. In fact they could make a case for deserving a point. The Swatcat’s defence looked very vulnerable at times and although they created many chances they still lack the “cutting edge” up front.
We now sit in a comfortable 12th place in the league - we have taken points off all six teams below us and we are 8 points above the drop zone. Although there are some grounds for optimism, I still think that we will continue to struggle against top ten teams - a big striker please - and soon!!

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 04, 2017, 09:39:14 AM »

Mazda meets Honda head on as the Swatcats take on Thai Honda Latkrabang this weekend, (Saturday 6th May, KO 1900, TV coverage Truesports 7). The Bangkok side has been struggling after its promotion from Tier 2 and should be easy pickings for the hosts.

Thaiwolf prediction; Home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 04, 2017, 09:38:35 AM »

Match Day 13 Stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 04, 2017, 09:37:48 AM »

Dateline 3rd May 2017 – Match day 12.

 FT Navy FC 0 NRFC 0

An important match for both clubs in this midweek clash in Sattahip. Ex Swatcat favourite Bjorn Lindemann is now a Navy player - will he help to put the Swatcats to the sword – or should I say to the cutlass?

After a low key start in which neither side mustered a real chance, the match meandered towards half time with nothing of substance to report. The only point of interest was a penalty claim by the visitors - it looked a clear trip on Chanatphon as he broke into the box but it was deemed to have been a dive and he was booked.
By half time, Navy had managed a single, weak shot and a speculative header - the visitors managed one effort on target!!

The second half commenced with the hope that either side would produce some sort of entertainment for the watching fans. Unfortunately the match continued on its aimless path. The match came to life in the 55th minute when a well struck Navy free kick struck the post - a unique moment of class in the match thus far.

In the 78th minute, with the visitors yet to register a single second half shot on goal, a second Navy free kick went narrowly over the bar.
 In a final Swatcat flourish, Naruphol was inches wide with an angled shot and minutes later he again managed a decent shot on target that was saved by the keeper.

A valuable point but another frustrating evening for Swatcat fans. This match clearly displayed why both of these sides will struggle as the season progresses. In an encounter painful to watch, neither side attacked with any real intent. The Swatcat’s fighting spirit exhibited against Bangkok United during the last match, was absent. I see very little in the current squad that gets my pulse racing - Dominic Adiyiah apart - the team is just…ordinary. Results are confirming this and so will their league position at the end of the season.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 02, 2017, 02:15:58 PM »

Update; Tomorrow’s match V Navy is to be shown on “True spark jump” – Truevisions channel 41 (Yep it’s a new one to me!!). KO is 18.00. Just a reminder – you can watch the match on the big screen at Saveone market.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: May 01, 2017, 08:04:21 AM »

The Swatcats travel to Sattahip to take on fellow strugglers Navy on Wednesday 3rd May (KO 1800 TV coverage TBC). This is a match that the Swatcats ought to be looking for points but I do have grave doubts that they will deliver.

Thaiwolf prediction; home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 30, 2017, 11:30:07 AM »

Match Day 11 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 30, 2017, 11:28:57 AM »

Dateline 29th April 2017 – Match day 11.

 FT NRFC 0 Bangkok United 0

The Swatcats welcomed high flying Bangkok United this weekend, with the men from Korat hoping to halt a disappointing run of results. The Bangkok Angels have scored 10 goals in their last 2 fixtures and will provide formidable opposition.  The attendance was 4531.

After a bright start from the visitors, Velkoski shot over, with an empty net beckoning, after a defensive lapse by Bangkok’s keeper. This was followed by periods of Swatcat pressure with Adiyiah the main threat. Whilst the Swatcats seemed to be in the ascendancy, Bangkok showed glimpes of class and their ability to get men forward quickly was superb and continued to cause the Swatcat defence problems.

In the 19th minute, an Adiyiah cross struck the hand of a defender - a bolt on penalty not awarded and minutes later after a fine flowing move, Athibordee shot wide - he should have done better!!

In the 32nd minute after a great solo run from his own half, Decha Sarandee drove just over from 14 yards - minutes later Boscovic sent an angled drive just wide. Minutes before half time the host’s keeper Saranon made a remarkable save from Boscovic to keep the scores level.

At half time, honours were even but with the hosts creating 3 or 4 clear chances, they were probably unlucky not to be ahead.

The second half opened with The Angels pressing but in the 50th minute Adiyiah went close with an angled drive well saved by the keeper. One sensed that Bangkok had upped their effort but the Swatcat’s defence was able to cope with any threats pretty well. Meanwhile the hosts broke sporadically with effective use of the flanks. In the 62nd minutes one of these breaks culminated in a chance for Adiyiah whose shot was well saved. Athibordee then shot over from 20 yards.

In the 64th minute an audacious flick from Adiyiah went just wide and with the hosts continuing to exploit space on the flanks a goal was looking likely.
In the 68th minute the Swatcats were again denied a penalty kick when Adiyiah was pulled down by the keeper and minutes later Chanatphon’s shot drifted inches wide.

Mario spurned a great chance to seal the win when he shot tamely in the 81st minute and in a final drama the hosts were denied a third penalty when the keeper upended Chakrit inside the box. The referee adjudged the offence to be outside the box

A much improved performance from the Swatcats and a real fillip for their fans. Against a tactically more astute team, they battled throughout and produced a number of chances, particularly in the first half. If, and it is a big if, they can produce this form consistently they should just keep clear of relegation woes.
Tonight they were unlucky not to gain all three points. This was their 6th draw - if 2 or 3 of these draws had been converted to wins, the team would be in a far more comfortable position.
Converting 3 of those draws into wins would put the team on 18 points - and 7th place in the league!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 25, 2017, 01:23:55 PM »

The Swatcats entertain in form Bangkok United this weekend. (KO 19.00 Saturday 29th April, TV coverage Truesports HD2 channel 667). The Angels have scored 10 goals in their last 2 fixtures and will severely test the home team’s shaky defence. Defeat could plunge the men from Korat into deep relegation trouble.

Thaiwolf prediction; Away win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 25, 2017, 07:59:56 AM »

Hi Benwahwah,
                           Welcome to Korat – here’s hoping you become a Swatcat fan.

The Swatcats are struggling at the moment but they are a club with a lot of potential and well worth supporting.

Tickets are available at the ground. The main stand tickets (zone w) are 150 bt. This is the best view and you are away from drums etc!! I think the clock end and the side opposite the main stand tickets are 100bt (used to be 60bt at clock end – might still be 60bt).

The ground is the 80th Anniversary Stadium and is one of the best in Thailand.

 Access is easy.

Drive out of town past the Mall as if going towards Saraburi/Bangkok. As you leave the city, just by the Sima Thani Hotel, you take a left slip road towards Pak Thong Chai (I think the turn is posted 80th Anniversary Stadium). Continue along the road towards Pak Thong Chai for about 3-4 km, then take a right turn at the traffic lights. This turn takes you onto the Stadium sports complex – you will see the ground on the left.
There is plenty of parking.

Sure we can meet up. Let me know when you are coming.

Best wishes – let me know if you need any more info. Thaiwolf
Posted by: Benwahwah
« on: April 24, 2017, 08:50:37 PM »

Hi Thaiwolf,

I am due to be moving to Korat on Thursday as I start my new teaching job there next week. I've always liked a bit of football so I hope you don't mind if I ask a couple of questions.

1. How much is a ticket to a home game?
2. How easy is it to get to the stadium? (I'm going to be near Boon Wattana Scholl I think).
3. If I'm able to come to a game any chance of meeting up?

Cheers,

Benwahwah
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 24, 2017, 10:52:54 AM »

Relegation matters - my assessment

Early in the season I acknowledge, but given The Swatcats recent performances, are they likely to be relegation candidates.

Super power very weak and are all but down already and thus are my first choice for relegation. Si Saket are weak - I would say on a par with the Swatcats and may be for the drop. Thai Honda will suffer as the rigours of Tier 1 football take their toll - I think they will go down.
Navy and Pattaya are better sides than the Swatcats and although they will struggle, I think they will survive. Sukhothai have disappointed so far and I think they may be a surprising candidate for relegation. After a successful first season in tier 1, like the Swatcats last year, they have found the second season very challenging.

So who are headed for Tier 2? - Superpower and any 2 from the following 4 - , Thai Honda, Si Saket, Sukhothai and NRFC.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 24, 2017, 10:08:17 AM »

Match Day 10 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 24, 2017, 10:07:07 AM »

Dateline 23rd April 2017 – Match day 10.

 FT Suphanburi FC 4 NRFC 0

The Swatcats took on the War Elephants of Suphanburi in this mid table clash. The visitors had a dreadful start when a defensive error let in Chananan who drove in on 5 minutes to put the hosts one up. Matters got worse in the 17th minute when a free kick found Dellatorre unmarked in the box - he simply lobbed the ball over the keeper into the net. 4 minutes later more schoolboy style defending allowed Madrigal to prod home the third.

With the game virtually all over after 20 minutes and the visitors managing only sporadic raids forward, Suphan added to the Swatcats woes with a fourth in the 44th minute when a completely unmarked Nicolas Velez tapped in from 6 yards – one has to ask, where was the bloody defence!!

The Swatcats mustered only one first half chance when Adiyiah drew a fine save from the Suphan keeper in the 40th minute.

A humiliating first half against a far from convincing Suphanburi outfit. The visitors looked shell shocked as they left the field at half time.

With Suphan taking their foot off the gas, the Swatcats regained some composure in the second half - although to be fair, it was simply damage control. A long range free kick which stung the visitor’s keeper’s hands as Suphan looked for a fifth and a Pina drive in the 59th minute were the highlights but in a half of little consequence neither side impressed.

One can put no gloss on it, another pretty ordinary performance. I’m trying hard not to overreact but I see little reason for optimism. We have now won 2 out of the first 10 games - one of which was against Superpower - a team already destined for Tier 2 oblivion.
A top ten finish is now off the wish list – bottom 5 with a forlorn hope that there are 3 weaker teams below us, is now the reality.

I am no tactician and my depth of knowledge of the finer points of the game is weak but I have 2 observations. Victor Igbonefo is not up to it at this level - he looks out of his depth and we will continue to leak goals if he remains - act now Milos. Secondly if we do not acquire a big target man to compliment an obviously talented Adiyiah we will not score many goals. Velkoski may be a good player but he does not fit the bill for our requirements.
A situation where a team leaks goals and cannot score is a recipe for disaster. If massive measures are not taken now, I fear the worst!!

Our next game is against is against an in form Bangkok United. I dread to think what the score might be………….. and I wonder how empty the 80th Anniversary Stadium might be !!

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 21, 2017, 05:07:15 PM »

Can’t get to Suphanburi? Watch the Swatcats live on the big screen whilst gulping cold Leo beer!!!

The match is being shown at Saveone market 19.00 Sunday 23rd.

I went to watch the recent showing of the Si Saket game at Saveone – it was most enjoyable with great atmosphere - I would recommend a visit.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 20, 2017, 10:49:37 AM »

The Swatcats take on Suphanburi this weekend, 23rd April (KO 19.00, TV coverage Truevisions
TS HD2, channel 667). The War Elephants have recently replaced their coach after a disappointing start to the campaign and the fans will be looking for an improvement in their current form.

Thaiwolf prediction; Draw
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 20, 2017, 10:32:25 AM »

Match Day 9 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 20, 2017, 10:31:28 AM »

Dateline 19th April 2017 – Match day 9.

 FT NRFC 1 Ratchaburi Mitr Phol FC 1

The Swatcats entertained Ratchaburi tonight. A sparse crowd of 4700 saw Ratchaburi open brightly with Cameroonian Essombe – who incidentally looked very dangerous all match, shooting narrowly wide in the second minute. The hosts countered with a rare moment of class when Pina drew a tremendous save from the keeper with a 20 yard drive. This shot was, to be honest, the Swatcat’s only real chance of the half.

The visitors looked dangerous up front, with the host’s goal line under threat and their defence looking vulnerable. With the rangy Essombe up front, they created a couple of decent chances.
In the 24th minute a well struck free kick hit the bar and El Jadeyaoui headed in the rebound to give the visitors a deserved lead.

A painful first half for Swatcat fans to watch with Ratchaburi dominating and the hosts chasing the game with little success.

The second half saw the introduction of Adiyiah - within seconds he announced his presence when he dabbed in from 4 yards after a fine cross from Velkoski. In a much more spirited second half performance the Swatcats took the game to a tiring Ratchaburi although the continuing tactic of lobbing long balls over the top was not very sophisticated - or effective!!
Adiyiah nearly bagged himself a brace when in the 57th minute he wriggled and turned in the box to swivel and send his shot narrowly wide – a classy touch from the Ghanaian. Minutes later Velkoski caused havoc in the visitor’s defence when his low cross was scrambled clear.

In a final flourish, Essombe headed just wide and yet again Adiyiah was nearly on target as both teams battled for a winner.

Not a bad performance but another unconvincing home result from the Swatcats tonight. Full marks to Ratchaburi who performed well and were able to neutralize the hosts attacking force. In the first half there was only one team in it with Ratchaburi unlucky to be only one goal up at half time.

Without Adiyiah the Swatcats looked totally toothless up front and with Ratchaburi seemingly able to carve up the host’s defence at will, the salvaging of a point was a real bonus for the home team.
A top ten finish is looking increasingly unlikely as each week passes - let’s hope that the team is not dragged into a relegation dogfight.
 I think we all will have to acknowledge that this season, we have a moderately talented team that is trying hard but will at best be a very ordinary mid table outfit ……. OK with me but what waste of potential!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 16, 2017, 06:49:12 PM »

The Swatcats take on Ratchaburi Mitr Phol at the 80th Anniversary Stadium on Wednesday 19th April (KO 20.00, TV coverage Truevisions TS2 channel 45). Ratchaburi are currently in 9th place - a single point above the men from Korat.

Thaiwolf prediction; Home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 09, 2017, 09:56:17 AM »

The League now takes a weekend break to accommodate Songkran. Fixtures recommence on 18th/19th April.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 09, 2017, 09:55:36 AM »

Match Day 8 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 09, 2017, 09:54:29 AM »

Dateline 8th April 2017 – Match day 8.

 FT Si Saket 3 NRFC 3

The Swatcats visited the Kouprey’s paddock searching for points to help preserve their mid table position.
The visitors began on the front foot probing for an early breakthrough and in the 14th minute they were rewarded for their early labours when a fine 22 yard drive from Decha Srandee opened the scoring. One minute later Athibordee slotted home a second after a finely crafted move. The visitors were off to a roaring start!!

The hosts pegged one back in the 25th minute with a superb 25 yard drive from Assumpcao but with the first half coming to an end Adiyiah spurned a guilt edged chance to put the game to bed when he fluffed from 6 yards out.
The Swatcats were then punished for that miss when, on the stroke of half time the Koupreys equalized when a well taken free kick from Assumpsao squirmed past the keeper

The second half began with the Swatcats falling into an old and much maligned stance – they sat back and allowed Si Saket to come onto them. This led to an almost constant pressure from the Koupreys and a couple of clear cut chances being produced. Inevitably a home goal came when Assumpsao completed a brilliant hat trick in the 88th minute with a simple tap in.

In an exciting climax to this thrilling match, the Swatcats snatched a point when Akekanat Kongket equalized with literally the last touch of the match. In a match that had almost everything thus far, the referee completed the occasion when he elected to send off the scorer for a reason I could not determine

A superb encounter, with the Koupreys overcoming the Swatcat’s early surge. A disappointing second half for the visitors with Si Saket deservedly going ahead with a superb halt trick from Assumpsao.
A decent performance from the Swatcats and certainly nothing to worry about. Their present position - give or take a place or two, is where I suspect they will end the season.
In truth a slightly fortuitous point for the Swatcats thanks to a last second equalizer…… but great entertainment.

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 09, 2017, 08:15:41 AM »

Really enjoyed my experience of the “Beer Leo” big screen event at Saveone market in Korat last night. I hope it becomes a regular event for Swatcat away games – great atmosphere!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 05, 2017, 02:46:27 PM »

Match Day 8

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 05, 2017, 08:33:05 AM »

The Swatcats visit Si Saket in the next T1 round. Si Saket have been struggling so far this season and the Swatcats might be expecting at least a point. KO 17.45 Saturday 8th April (TV coverage True sports 2, channel 45).

Thaiwolf prediction: away win.


**** Although details are a little sketchy (this is Thaialnd after all), it would appear that there is going to be big screen showing of the game at Saveone market with a sponsors show preceding it.
The show begins at 16.00 with kick off of course at 17.45 ****
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 04, 2017, 10:39:37 AM »

Match Day 7 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 04, 2017, 10:38:19 AM »

Dateline 3rd April 2017 – Match day 7.

 FT NRFC 4 Superpower Samut Prakan 0

Struggling and winless Superpower Samut Prakan were the guests in Korat tonight.

A disappointing crowd of 4114 saw the hosts open brightly, utilizing acres of space in midfield as Superpower struggled to maintain any sort of sustained possession. Dominic Adiyiah was, as usual, a constant threat as the men in orange probed.

The Swatcats opened their account in the 14th minute when a 35 yard free kick from Pina crept past the flailing Superpower keeper – a fine effort. Seconds later Athibordee went close with an angled drive.
Unbelievably, in the 17th minute Pina again scored with a long range free kick – this time from a full 40 yards out. The keeper must take some responsibility for fumbling on the line but another fine effort from the Brazilian.

In the 26th minute Chakrit drew a fine save from the keeper after good work from Adiyiah as the hosts continued to look dangerous. The pressure paid off in the 35th minute when Akekanat Kongket  drove home from 7 yards following a corner.
In the 37th minute Superpower produced a rare chance after some slack defending but as the half drew to a close the Swatcats were well on top.

The second half commenced with Dominic Adiyiah breaking and drawing a fine save from the keeper. The hosts seemed to have taken their foot off the gas early in the half, but in the 75th minute they scored a fourth when Naruphol scored with a curling effort after great work from Adiyiah.

With Superpower restricted to occasional speculative long range efforts, the home defence was rarely tested tonight and with the hosts putting away their chances with relative ease, this was an easy victory.
Make no mistake, Superpower were very poor tonight and based on this performance they will be playing Tier 2 football next year. The Swatcats played well but I still think they will continue to struggle against more impressive opponents. A fine 3 points however and their only losses thus far have been against the mighty Buriram and MuangThong.

Top ten?? maybe…but only just!!!

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 04, 2017, 10:37:18 AM »

Match Day 7
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: April 02, 2017, 05:38:36 PM »

Just a quick reminder, Swatcats V Superpower tomorrow (Monday) 20.00. Come along and support your local team.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 29, 2017, 08:09:55 AM »

Tier 1 matches recommence after the international break on MONDAY 3rd April, with the Swatcats taking on winless and bottom of the table Superpower Samut Prakan at the 80th Anniversary Stadium. (KO 20.00, TV coverage Truesports HD3).
This is a “must win” fixture for the Stuttering Swatcats. A defeat would confirm the worst in my mind and is unthinkable.

Thaiwolf prediction; Home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 13, 2017, 05:43:01 PM »


The Premier League now takes a break to accommodate the National team’s World Cup Qualifying games. Games recommence on Monday 3rd April.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 13, 2017, 05:41:55 PM »

Match Day 6 results and stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 13, 2017, 05:40:27 PM »

Dateline 11th March 2017 – Match day 6.

 FT Muang Thong United 2 NRFC 0

The Swatcats took on the mighty Kirins at the SCG Stadium with pundits remarking that due to the Swatcat’s sky blue and white change strip, the spectacle looked remarkably like a Manchester derby!!

The opening 20 minutes saw both sides sparring with no clear chances created but the visitors did seem to be showing more forward intent than against Buriram.
In the 20th minute Muang Thong broke the deadlock when Mongkol Tossakai nodded in after some ping pong heading following a corner. The Swatcats countered with a shot testing Keeper Kawin and a brief period of pressure.
The half – a half of few chances, concluded with the Swatcats still in the game following a pretty decent first half performance.

After the break, in the 48th minute, Velkoski came close to equalizing with a well directed header going just over the bar but minutes later, Teerasil Dangda effectively sealed the victory with an acrobatic tap in - this was his 100th TPL goal – a fine achievement.

A rare substitution appearance for Prompong in the 65th minute will, I know, please some Swatcat fan diehards but he rarely had opportunities to influence the game in a meaningful way.

The game meandered to a close with neither side able to trouble each other’s keepers to give the Kirins a well deserved 3 points.

A better performance than against Buriram with the team looking better organized in defence and showing more ambition going forward.
So 6 games in and heading for the International break, the Swatcats find themselves languishing just above the relegation spots. The position may not, in fact, be as bad as it seems. Of our six games played four have been away fixtures - with two of those away games against top 4 opposition.
Our form however has been mediocre thus far and one can only hope that it is because it is taking time for the new players to settle in.
Early days I know but I feel that we may be in for a tough season. I cannot see too many teams weaker than the Swatcats in a strengthening Top Tier hierarchy.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 09, 2017, 09:16:34 AM »

In their second consecutive challenging away fixture of the week, the Swatcats take on high flying Muang Thong United at the SCG Stadium.
(KO 20.00 hours, 11th March).
I see little hope that the visitors will compete with the Premier League big boys and my only hope is that they can leave Northaburi without a drubbing.

Thaiwolf prediction ; I haven’t got a single prediction right so far, so here goes - away win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 09, 2017, 08:54:56 AM »

Match day 5 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 09, 2017, 08:53:34 AM »

Dateline 8th March 2017 – Match day 5.

 FT Buriram United 4 NRFC 0

The clash of two of Isaan’s football superpowers took place in the Thunder Castle in this midweek encounter.

The game began with the hosts pressing forward with Diogo looking dangerous. The Swatcat’s defence coped effectively with the early raids forward, lying deep and content to soak up early pressure.

On 16 minutes Coelho nodded in following some slack defending to give Buriram the lead and 3 minutes later the Swatcats went two down when an unmarked Supachok drove home from 10 yards.

With the Swatcats not able to mount a semblance of an attacking move, one is tempted to say already - 20 minutes in - game over.

Buriram continued to dominate with the visitors only able to muster a couple of half hearted long range shots. With the visitor’s defence in total disarray time after time it was ultimately punished as Coelho made it 3-0 with a 12 yard drive.

The second half began, echoing the first half dominance of the home team with the Swatcats again unable to mount any sustained forward play. The continued lack of coverage by defenders inside the box is both worrying and likely to lead to more goals in this one-sided encounter.

In a rare foray forward Akekenat poked the ball just wide from 4 yards - the first Swatcat chance of the match in the 66th minute!!!  Velkoski then missed from 2 yards after good work from Athibordee.
A slightly better performance in the second half but I suspect that Buriram had, by this time, taken their foot off the gas.

Late drama in the 76th minute as Chalermpong was dismissed for a cynical challenge on Diogo. Why Diogo was not himself sent off for retaliating with a brutal shove is a complete mystery to me.

In the dying seconds the visitors conceded a penalty that Diogo converted to complete the scoring for Buriram.

Painful to watch and generally a poor performance against an obviously more talented side. Clueless in defence, toothless up front - there’s not much more to say.
I would have liked to have seen more fight and ambition and to sit back from the start is asking for trouble against a side like Buriram. This tactic effectively allowed Buriram to put the game to bed within the first 20 minutes.

Not a disaster but it does signal that we are not capable of competing with the top teams….and Muang Thong to come at the weekend!!!

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 09, 2017, 08:52:38 AM »

Match day 5 result
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 06, 2017, 08:59:29 AM »

Wednesday's full fixture list
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 06, 2017, 08:58:33 AM »

Sunday's results and updated table
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 06, 2017, 08:57:41 AM »

Fixtures are now coming in thick and fast before the international break with the second of 3 games within seven days.

The Swatcats enter the Thunder Castle to take on fellow Isaan contenders Buriram United in this midweek match day 5 fixture. (KO 1800 hours wed. 8th March, TV coverage Truevisions TS HD 3 channel 668).
Buriram are no longer the great force of past seasons but will still represent a massive challenge for the visitors.

Thaiwolf prediction ; score draw.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 05, 2017, 11:49:41 AM »

Match day 4 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: March 05, 2017, 11:48:46 AM »

Dateline 4th March 2017 – Match day 4.

 FT NRFC 2 Pattaya United 2

The Swatcats took on the Rockin’ Dolphins from Pattaya at the 80th Anniversary Stadium aiming to keep their unbeaten record intact. The official attendance was stated as 9018 but my observation was that they were considerably more - maybe 14-16 000 at the ground. Maybe a “typo” and in reality there were 19 018 in attendance !!

Pattaya started brightly, being able to breach the hosts defence at will with raids down the flanks. In fact the hosts were lucky not to go one down in the second minute when a crisp cross was not converted. In fact, Pattaya impressed as they dominated the first 20 minutes. The Swatcats meanwhile looked limp and without creative ideas and chances - even half chances were rare.

In the 14th minute Pattaya cut through the hosts defence like a knife through butter as a cross was nodded in by an unmarked Wellington. One has to ask “whose responsibility was it to pick up the tall Wellington?” – Igbonefo one assumes!!!
Pattaya created another clear chance in the 26th minute with a snap shot well saved by the home keeper. The Swatcats continued to “huff and puff” with little reward as the half progressed.

The host’s first real chance came in the 29th minute when good work from Adiyiah set up a shooting chance for Naruphol that was parried by the visitor’s keeper.
 Minutes later Velkoski converted a penalty to draw the Swatcats level. I have watched the replay several times and I still cannot see why the penalty was awarded!!
Adiyiah then went close on the cusp of half time as the hosts began to press.

The second half began with the men from Korat showing greater resolve but they were nearly shocked in the 48th minute when a low shot almost squirmed through the keeper’s hands.

In the 56th minute, their endeavours were rewarded when a superbly fashioned move terminating in a controlled finish from Velkoski gave them the lead – a cracking goal!! He was later denied a potential hat-trick with a poor offside decision going against him.

With the home defence looking unsure at times and an absolute sitter missed by Pattaya in the 70th minute, the inevitable happened when Stojanovic stabbed home in the 77th minute after some shambolic defending by the hosts.

Velkoski missed a golden opportunity in the 80th minute when he shot over when an empty net beckoned – I think even I could have slotted that one in – with my legs tied together!!! A minute later Chakrit spurned another great chance to win it for the Swatcats.

With time running out, tempers boiling and the hosts desperate for the winner, Adiyiah and Lee Won Young were both dismissed for a fracas on the Swatcat goal line. Lee appeared to head butt Adiyiah who responded with a left jab to the face.

Another point gained – and still unbeaten, but it may be perceived as two points needlessly dropped. Another mediocre performance in which the defence looked very vulnerable at times - I’m still having doubts about Igbonefo’s obvious lack of pace. Up front we looked toothless with very little real quality with the final ball in evidence - only 4 chances created all match.


Against a team who most people may suggest will be relegation candidates come the end of the season, the Swatcats were made to look very ordinary. One worries what quality teams will do to this team. My preseason optimism is gradually waning match by match……

…………..Mind you - what do I know; maybe they’ll beat Buriram on Wednesday!!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 28, 2017, 10:51:21 AM »

The Swatcats welcome Pattaya United to the 80th Anniversary stadium on 4th March at 1900 hours (TV coverage True sports 6). A vital fixture for the hosts who will expect to remain unbeaten.

With two very challenging fixtures to follow -  Buriram away and Muang Thong away, 3 points are essential against the “Rockin’ Dolphins”.

Thaiwolf prediction ; home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 27, 2017, 01:58:13 PM »

Match day 3 stats
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 27, 2017, 01:57:18 PM »

Swatcat fans at Chonburi
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 27, 2017, 01:56:28 PM »

Dateline 26th Feb 2017 – Match day 3.

 FT Chonburi Sharks 0 NRFC 0

The Swatcats travelled east to take on the Chonburi Sharks in this weekend’s fixture. The match began with both sides sparring but with little end effect and both defences able to cope with what few half chances were created.
In the 7th minute a flailing Victor Igbonefo was lucky not to concede a penalty with a clumsy challenge just outside the 18 yard box. The resulting free kick struck the bar with the visiting keeper well beaten.

Poor balls in the final third prevented either side from creating real chances and at times the fans were subjected to periods of ping pong soccer with both sides alternately belting it long rather than playing it through midfield.
In the 16th minute Andre Luis tested the keeper with a snap shot and in the 47th minute, a well crafted move resulted in a Dominic Adiyiah drive that was well saved by the home team’s keeper, were rare moments of class in an otherwise dull first half.
A couple of half chances from the Sharks as the half progressed gave them the edge as the first half concluded.

The second half began with attacking moves from both sides again breaking down with poor final balls, but in the 52nd minute Chonburi went close with a looping header after a fine cross. The home team began to exert increasing pressure with the men in orange confined to rare breaks forward.
Despite this pressure, clear cut chances were at a premium as the Swatcats defended doggedly, snuffing out any potential threats. The match petered out in a rather uninspiring way with the match ending in a dull stalemate - a useful point for the visitors but with home advantage, Chonburi will be disappointed with their lack of firepower up front.

A poor spectacle tonight with two teams destined, on their performances tonight, for mid table mediocrity. Neither side provided any real and consistent class up front with both keepers experiencing a relatively quiet night.
A dour and determined performance from the Swatcats, which keeps them unbeaten. Still only two goals from three matches which is a worry but 4 points from our opening two away games is encouraging and if we can maintain a decent home record we should be heading for a mid table finish.
Defensively (only one goal conceded so far and that was a penalty) we look sound, but Victor Igbonefo looked sluggish at times tonight and I think stronger teams will expose his lack of pace.

A mention has to be made about the Swatcat’s support tonight. The away section was sold out and the fans were noisy and relentless in their support of the team - well done to the fans. I feel sure that the players appreciate their support.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 22, 2017, 07:55:41 AM »

The Swatcats go east this weekend to take on the Sharks of Chonburi (KO 1900 hours Sunday 26th Feb – TV coverage Truesports HD2). The Sharks have been experiencing traumatic changes within the club and are certainly not the force they once were. The thus far unbeaten Swatcats will expect to remain unbeaten after this encounter.

Thaiwolf prediction – score draw
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 20, 2017, 10:42:59 AM »

Match day 2 results and table
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 20, 2017, 10:41:54 AM »

Dateline 19th Feb 2017 – Match day 2.

 FT NRFC 1 Police Tero 1

The Swatcats welcomed newly formed Police Tero FC in the inaugural home match of the 2017 TPL season. The Fire Dragons started with ex-Swatcat keeper Kampon in goal.

In front of a healthy crowd of 12 250 fans, the home side had the better of the first 30 minutes although Tero played some neat passing football at times. With Adiyiah a constant thorn in their side, Tero withstood early pressure and in what was otherwise an uneventful opening. Only a long range Adiyiah shot in the 15th minute and a fine free kick from Chanatphon set the pulse racing.

Tero did not put a single shot of any substance on target in the first half.

Tero went ahead in the 53rd minute after a needless and clumsy challenge by Igbonefo gave Tero a penalty. After going one down the hosts panicked and resorted to the long ball with little effect. They rarely looked dangerous and indeed Tero went close in the 63rd minute and again in the 79th minute with a shot hitting the bar.

In the 85th minute a bullet header from Adiyiah was saved by the keeper and Igbonefo tapped in the deflection. The goal was disallowed as Adiyiah was correctly adjudged to have been offside.

Well into injury time, the hosts leveled when a Chakrit shot was deflected into the goal. Ironic but pleasing that the  5 minutes added on time led to the goal after Tero’s infuriating time wasting tactics earlier in the game.
With literally seconds to go a quick break by Tero saw a shot slide wide in what would have been an undeserved winner.

A disappointing and frustrating night for the Swatcats although salvaging a point was an obvious bonus. The lack of penetration against Tero’s well organized defence is something to work on. In truth, penalty apart, Tero had few chances but I guess they deserved their point.

Still unbeaten but we must win these home games. 4 points against two decent sides is a fine start to the new campaign and I foresee a fairly successful season ahead.

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 13, 2017, 08:57:51 AM »

Dateline 12th Feb 2017

 FT Sukhothai 0 NRFC 1

The Swatcats began their 2017 campaign at the home of the Firebats hoping to get their season off to a flying start.

Playing in a fetching sky blue and white kit the visitors opened brightly with Adiyiah testing the home keeper in the 2nd minute with an angled drive. A minute later Adiyiah again drew a fine save from the keeper but was ruled offside.
Midway through the first half, and the Swatcats continued to “rule the roost” with Sukhothai seemingly unable to string passes together - early days but the visitors seemed in charge.

The men from Korat opened the scoring in the 27th minute when Chakrit rifled in an angled drive from 14 metres - Sukhothai look tired - maybe their Chinese exploits in the ACL are catching up with them.

As the first half drew to a close, it was becoming a “one man show” as Adiyiah again went close in the 40th minute - Sukhothai were yet to register a shot on goal.

The second half commenced and I just do not think that Sukhothai could play as badly as they did in the first half. I think this one may be down to how well the Swatcats can keep their concentration.

Bireme went close for the hosts in the 51st minute - their first real chance. They looked a little livelier after half time but the Swatcat players seemed quicker to the ball and more dangerous going forward.
With 20 minutes to go, the hosts were growing in confidence and were getting more of the ball. Although creating no clear chances, they fought themselves back into the game and were putting pressure on the visitor’s goal.

In a rare second half foray, Adiyiah shot wide as the Firebats continued to press. Although under considerable second half pressure the Swatcat defence looked solid with Igbonefo particularly impressive

A bright attacking performance in the first half followed by a strong rearguard action in the second half.  An encouraging start to the season by the Swatcats. The team line up looks balanced and they look impressive going forward. Our new acquisitions look to have settled in effectively and this performance leaves me fairly optimistic for the season ahead.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: February 13, 2017, 08:56:42 AM »

************************************** WELCOME TO THE TPL 2017 SEASON************************************************
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: January 30, 2017, 06:21:20 PM »

Isaan Derby Tournament Update – Second day fixtures.

FT 3rd place play off - Si Saket 5 @ Roi Et FC 2

Roi Et played some pretty passing football in midfield at times but they were overpowered comfortably by Premier League outfit Si Saket. Si Saket looked stronger as the game progressed with Roi Et unable to produce much of a threat up front.

Attendance : 500

FT Final – Nakhon Ratchasima FC 5 Nong Bua Pitchaya FC 1

A first half blitz during which Nahkon Ratchasima raced into a 3 nil lead within the first 16 minutes effectively extinguished Nong Bua’s hopes of winning the Isaan Derby trophy.

Make no mistake, Nong Bua are a decent side as shown by their defeat of premier League side  Si Saket in the first round of matches, but they found it difficult to cope with the skill and pace of Dominic Adiyiah who was ably supported by Pina and Velkoski.

Nong Bua opened brightly but were soon swamped by the attacking force of the hosts. Using long and rangy balls down the flanks, the home team opened the scoring in the 6th minute when Nattapong headed in after fine work from Adiyiah. Two minutes later Adiyiah broke though the middle of the park and finished a fine solo effort to make it two nil.
The game was effectively sealed when the Swatcats scored a third in the 16th minute when Eakkanut Kongket lashed home from 8 yards. The Swatcats remained in complete control for the rest of the first half with the Gamecocks unable to mount any real challenge.

The second half began with the home side pressing and in the 49th minute a long ball over the top caught the Nong Bua defence napping and Chakrit slotted home the fourth.

Nong Bua went close with a long range shot in the 55th minute and again in the 58th minute with a header cleverly tipped over the bar by the home keeper but Korat countered with an Adiyiah drive drifting narrowly wide.
Roi Et scored a consolation goal with a penalty kick in the 83rd minute but the hosts countered with a late tap in from Sarawut to seal a well earned victory and lift the inaugural Isaan Derby Cup.

Trying not to be too optimistic and this weekend’s opposition has not been the greatest, but the team looks very fluid and pacy going forward. Adiyiah seems on fire and Pina and Velkoski look very competent.
Although the defence has not experienced much direct pressure, Igbonefo looked rock solid at the back – some good signs for the coming season.

Attendance : 3200

Footnote ;  A most enjoyable festival of football with plenty of goals. How good would this entity be, if next year Buriram and Ubon UMT joined the fun? I hope that this does become an annual event – well done to the club’s administrators
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: January 28, 2017, 10:14:52 AM »

Isaan Derby Tournament Update – First day fixtures.

FT Si Saket 1 Nong Bua Pitchaya FC 2

Premier League Si Saket took on the plucky Nong Bua Gamecocks in the opening game of the tournament. An impressive Nong Bua overcame the Premier League outfit with an aggressive display of attacking football, spurning a couple of guilt edged chances on the way to a well deserved victory.

Nong Bua will take on Nakhon Ratchasima in Sunday’s final. I anticipate a strong challenge from the second tier side that played impressively this afternoon.

Attendance; me, a stray dog and 31 others.

FT Nakhon Ratchasima 4 Roi Et United 0

Before a crowd swelling to around 1-2000, the hosts took on the White Squirrels from Roi Et.

The hosts opened the scoring in the 5th minute with Dominic Adiyiah dragging a shot wide of the keeper from 12 yards. Velkoski had a great  chance to put the Swatcats 2 up in the 16th minute when he sent a header wide after a fine cross from Adiyiah.
Chanatphon put the hosts 2 up with a well taken free kick in the 41st minute.

In the 61st minute Chakrit scored the third after a fine flowing break – at this point the difference in class between the two sides was becoming increasingly apparent.

A controversially awarded penalty in the70th minute gave Adiyiah the chance to put the Korat side 4 up but the Roi Et keeper saved the shot. The Swatcats put the icing on the cake with a late 4th goal. A tap in by Sarawut after good work from Adiyiah.

The team looked lively up front with Pina Velkoski and Adiyiah combining well to create many chances. The defence looked sound, although truth be told it was not severely tested tonight.

Nong Bua will provide a greater challenge in the final on sunday.

Attendance 1-2000
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: January 04, 2017, 12:03:38 PM »

The 2017 season kicks of on 11-12th Feb (TBC), so I thought a season's preview would be in order.

I am really looking forward to the 2017 season. I am expecting a bit of a bounce after the national team’s splendid performances in the Suzuki Cup, perhaps with attendances up and expectations high.

As usual at the start of any TPL season there are still unknowns, but here’s hoping for a successful campaign. Top of the pile I expect the usual suspects. My team of the year last season was Bangkok United – I expect them to be fighting for the title this year. Muangthong United, AKA the Thai National team, will be there with them and don’t write off Buriram United – they impressed me in the recent friendly at Korat.

With many teams seemingly cutting back on “expensive players”, Chang Rai and to a lesser extent Sukhothai have been splashing the cash – I admire their ambition but can you simply buy success? Sukhothai had an excellent first season in the top flight, but as my team Nakhon Ratchasima has found, that second season can be a real challenge – especially if the team overachieved in their first season.
I expect Bangkok Glass, Sukhothai and Chang Rai to complete the top six.

I know this is contentious but I firmly believe that the Tero/Udon situation is a great move for the long term sake of the Premier League. Football purists I know will disagree but geographically and demographically the league needs teams that cover the whole of Thailand – come on in Chang Mai and Songkhla and make it quick!!

At the wrong end of the table the three incoming teams will find the going tough together with Super Power, Pattaya and Navy who will all be battling for survival. In the lower echelons Si Saket will be safe.
Disappointment of the 2016 season were Suphanburi and I cannot really see why the coming season will be any different. Ratchaburi will continue to be a solid top eight side and one hopes that Chonburi can get their act together to join them in the top eight. The latter seem to have a crisis of confidence and lack of direction at the present time but I still see a decent finish for the team.

Finally the Swatcats, a strong finish in the last campaign under the stewardship of Milos Joksic leads me to believe that, despite the seeming loss of Tagbajumi, Lindemann and Chivuta, a top ten finish is on the cards. I for one would again just be happy with survival (the league needs a sustainable team from Korat) but I personally am disappointed with the team’s lack of ambition – they need to “kick on” now and fully establish their position at the top table.

I hope that we all enjoy a competitive well fought season, with no dramas or crises. We have all has enough of the shenanigans – let the battles commence!!

Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: November 11, 2016, 08:42:59 AM »

Nakhon Ratchasima FC have signed Kritsada Hemwipat from Sukhothai FC and Eakkanut Kongket from Khon Kaen United.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: October 14, 2016, 03:59:34 PM »

Following the King’s death, the rest of the TPL season will not take place and the two cup competitions will be decided by lottery. This means that Muang thong United will be declared champions and BBCU, Chainat and Army will be relegated. They will be replaced by UMT Ubon United, Thai Honda and Port.

The final standings are therefore:
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: October 08, 2016, 03:03:05 PM »

Apparently, the Swatcats have adopted a new shirt crest for next season. Do you like it?
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 26, 2016, 04:14:52 PM »

Dateline 25th September 2016

 Pattaya United 4 NRFC 1

The Swatcats rolled into “sin city” searching for points to help achieve a top ten finish and possibly place one of the final nails in the coffin in the Blue Dolphins’ fight for premier league survival.

 The visitors began with a bang with a goal from Pratan in the 3rd minute – a fine, powerful header from a well flighted corner.
The blue dolphins fought back with a series of raids forward, looking effective and particularly dangerous. With the Swatcat defence conceding a series of free kicks, one sensed that this could still be a long night for the men from Korat.

In the 10th minute an angled shot from Pattaya struck the post and minutes later a lob went inches over the visitor’s crossbar.
In the 16th minute a free kick was awarded just outside the box and the kick was expertly converted to equalize the score. The home team continued to probe and looked a decent team going forward. The Swatcats looked jaded and seemed to have no answers as Pattaya pressed.

Pattaya went ahead when a disputed penalty was awarded and converted in the 31st minute - a lead they probably deserved. In the aftermath Lindemann was lucky to stay on the pitch following a head butt on an opponent. Minutes later a rare chance for the Swatcats as a half volley was well saved and from the resulting corner Tagbajumi headed wide.

After conceding yet another free kick, a whipped in cross was headed into the net to give the Blue Dolphins a 3-1 lead as the first half came to a close. In added time Chanatphol was dismissed for a dangerous tackle. All in all a bit of a horror show from the visitors so far.

With the match all but a dead rubber, the Swatcats failed to make the home team feel under any real pressure as the home team searched for a fourth goal and in the 60th minute Pinto, completely unmarked inside the 6 yard box, headed in to complete his hat-trick.

A now demoralized Swatcat team played out the final 30 minutes hoping not to concede again and presumably left to wonder “what went wrong tonight?”

Not too many positives to be taken from this encounter. A stuttering performance with no real cohesion between defence, midfield and attack.  Few real chances were made and the defence looked very shaky throughout. The team was well beaten by a side tipped for relegation by many and the result was a bit of a shock to the many fans that made the long journey to watch the match – in short a reality check for the Swatcat team.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 21, 2016, 08:14:52 AM »

The Swatcats embark on their final push for a top ten finish when they take on Pattaya United this weekend (KO  6.00 pm, Sunday 25th September).  They should be looking to increase their points total in this fixture.
Their last 4 games are all against relegation threatened teams so a decent haul of points is a distinct possibility.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 18, 2016, 10:29:17 AM »

Dateline 17th September 2016

 NRFC 2 Buriram United 0

The “Big Dawgs” of Isaan clashed tonight seeking the temporary bragging rights of the region.

In front of a feisty crowd of 22 000 fans (nice to see the stadium almost full to capacity), the Swatcats went immediately on the attack with Bjorn Lindemann hitting the woodwork with a thumping header from a well flighted corner in the first minute. Tunez then went close with a close range flick as the match immediately burst into life.

In the 6th minute a quick counter attack ended when Lindemann drew a fine save from the visitor’s keeper – can this tempo last for the remaining 84 minutes!!

The game settled into a midfield battle with both sides jostling for dominance with Buriram looking more polished but being more than matched for endeavour by the home team. Diogo in particular looked real class.

On 21 minutes a free kick on the flank from Lindemann again brought the opposition keeper into action – Bjorn really is on fire at the moment!!! Minutes later Chanatphon went close with a 20 yard free kick.
After a quickly taken free kick, a cross was launched into the box and found Tagbajumi who bravely headed into the net to give the Swatcats a 30th minute lead.
Buriram then began to exert pressure with a couple of half chances created and in the 44th minute, in a somewhat harsh decision, a penalty was awarded for a challenge inside the box. The penalty taker spurned the chance to level the game, sending the kick narrowly wide.

As the half drew to a close, on chances alone, the home team was in charge but with Buriram’s pedigree and experience, they were still in the game.

The second half began with the home team probing and Buriram looking largely flat going forward. In the 59th minute the visitors went close with a close range shot going wide. They continued to press and Diogo was unlucky when his shot was deflected wide in the 66th minute. The home team countered and a Lindemann break led to a dangerous cross which was almost converted into a second goal as Chakrit flicked it over the bar.
In a further break by Tagbajumi in the 78th minute, continued with a superb ball into the box from Lindemann, May T failed to convert what would have been a killer goal. The home team continued to flow forward confidently putting the Buriram rearguard under pressure but Buriram broke and hit the right upright with a diving header in the 82nd minute – a close shave for the men in orange!

In a frenetic and emotional finale to the match, Buriram again hit the post but the home team immediately countered and Lindemann provided the “icing on the cake” with a superb solo effort to put the Swatcats two up.

A great contest and a most satisfying result for the men from Korat. The team is continuing to put in decent performances. I have said it before but it bears repeating, the team is playing better under Joksic than they were at any point last season – and we finished 8th.
In terms of TPL dynamics, Buriram are certainly not the force they were and NRFC seem to be in the ascendancy. Tonight the Swatcats proved again that they can compete at the highest level… I think next season they may raise a few people’s eyebrows!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 14, 2016, 02:03:50 PM »

It’s the BIG one this weekend as the Swatcats welcome a stuttering Buriram side to the 80th Anniversary Stadium (KO Saturday,17th September 7.00 pm). After the debacle of last year’s overselling of tickets (which resulted in an all time record TPL attendance figure) one wonders what the attendance will be this time round.
I expect a tough match and would be more than happy with a point. With the Swatcats in 11th place but only 4 points above the relegation spots, a point would be most welcome.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 11, 2016, 08:16:10 AM »

Dateline 10th September 2016

 Suphanburi 3 NRFC 1

10th plays 11th as in form NRFC take on the underachieving War Elephants in this weekend’s fixture. Suphan finished an excellent 3rd in the TPL last year but this season they have struggled to string together a decent run of results.

The visitors opened confidently, dominating possession but the home team manufactured 2 decent chances on the break in the 15th and 16th minutes. In the 22nd minute Lindemann, on his old stamping ground, broke thought the Suphan defence and his low drive was well saved by the keeper.

In the 32nd minute after a fine break down the right flank Tagbajumi headed just wide and in a half of few real chances, a real opportunity to break the deadlock. Suphan then rallied and Chappuis went close from 10 yards on the cusp of half time.

A competent and well controlled first half performance with some decent build up play in midfield.

The second half began with a bang with a Darko Tasevski shot that thundered off the angle of the upright and the crossbar – the goal frame may still be shuddering!!!

In the 54th minute Suphanburi went ahead with a well worked glancing header. The Swatcats then pressed forward searching for the elusive equalizer but with little effect - in fact Suphanburi looked the more dangerous of the two sides and in the 67th minute the home side went two up with an unchallenged tap in from a corner. Lindemann immediately countered with a fine drive but it now looked all over for the visitors.

In the 82nd minute after the ball was needlessly given away just outside the box the ball was slotted home to put the home side three up. Minutes later the Swatcats had a chance cleared off the line and from the resulting clearance, Pralong Sawandee clouted the ball into the net from 25 yards to give the score a more reasonable appearance.
In the 92nd minute the Swatcats were awarded a very dubious penalty decision. Lindemann drove the penalty way over the bar – perhaps justice was done!!!

The team looked and performed like a decent team tonight and the spirit seemed good despite recent rumours of player’s salaries not being paid. Chances however were as usual at a premium despite decent build up at times – we are by no means a free scoring side!!
Defensive lapses in the second half cost us the points but full marks to Suphanburi for a deserved home win.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 06, 2016, 01:33:36 PM »

Just a reminder that the TPL recommences this weekend. The Swatcats travel to Suphanburi (KO 6.00pm Saturday 10th Sept) hoping to gain a victory that would elevate them to a comfortable 10th place in the league.
Suphanburi have been struggling this season and thus I feel that there is a real chance of a point or even a victory for the visitors.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 04, 2016, 10:08:12 AM »

The climax to the 2016 TPL season is upon us and a time to look forward – and back to the journey of the team during the year.

With 6 games to go, my feeling is that the team is 100% safe from relegation – relegation that until 2 months ago looked a distinct possibility. The season started badly, with unexpected home defeats, poor performances and dwindling attendances. The team was in crisis – the team lacked spirit and pundits in the know were suggesting that Sugao Kambe’s coaching methods were lacking. As a mere on looking fan, I sensed that the players were lacking motivation and had lost respect for the coach.

The matches and performances lacked any kind of entertainment merit and I was not surprised that the fans voted with their feet – a nearly empty stadium at some of those early home marches was most disconcerting – but at least it was easy to get out of the carpark after the matches!!

The inevitable happened and Kambe was replaced. Milos Joksic, who had brought Pattaya United up into the Premier League, was appointed. He set a target of “top 10” and we all (well I did) cried “No chance!!!”.

What a revelation. An immediate change and some encouraging but not spectacular results. I am no tactician and upon asking some expert friends they could not detect an appreciable change in tactics but there was nonetheless a change. Joksic dropped local hero Noah Chivuta from the starting lineup and Bjorn Lindemann seemed “bjorn again” playing out of his skin match after match. He also made changes at the back and started playing Tagbajumi and Adiyiah together up front.

The squad seemed rejuvenated and a real spirit emerged on the pitch. Results continued to yield points as the team eased away from the bottom three. As I write the team sits in 11th place on the same number of points as 10th place Suphanburi.

So with games against Suphanburi and Buriram United next to test the team’s mettle and then 4 comparatively easy games against teams in the bottom five to conclude the season, a top ten finish does seem, after all a possibility.

So what of the season - well considerable relief if we avoid the drop, pleasure at seeing the improvement in the latter half of the season and optimism for next season – I really do think that the team are playing better now than they did last season.

A topsi-turvy season for sure keeping us all on tenterhooks for large parts…but hopefully with a happy ending.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: September 01, 2016, 05:40:23 PM »

Oh heck!! Bjorn Lindemann announces that the squad has only been paid half salary this month. Could be that the Swatcats are in financial trouble!!!
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: August 21, 2016, 03:36:59 PM »

The TPL now takes a couple of weeks break to accommodate the Thai National Team’s fixtures. Action starts again on the weekend of 10-11th September when the Swatcats have the opportunity to leap frog Suphanburi into the Holy Grail that is 10th place.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: August 21, 2016, 03:36:15 PM »

Dateline 20th August 2016

 NRFC 1 Bangkok United 1

NRFC faced a stern test of their credentials as they took on the high flying Bangkok United at the 80th Anniversary Stadium.

The home side started brightly with Tagbajumi shooting over in the 2nd minute then Adiyiah was on target after a fine run. Adiyiah then fired inches wide after a fine passing move.
Bangkok United attacked sporadically but their moves were looking somewhat sterile early on but the signs of class were becoming increasingly apparent as the match progressed – they have a talented squad.

In the 13th minute a fine break, with astute use of the long ball, Tagbajumi made the opposition keeper work with a low drive. The Angel’s goal now seemed under constant danger as Adiyiah again made the opposing keeper work to keep out a drive.

In a goalless first half, the Swatcats demonstrated that they can compete with the best that the TPL has to offer, in some ways they were unlucky not to be ahead.

The second half commenced with Bangkok on the attack but then a dangerous counter attack ended with Lindemann shooting over. With the home team exerting some fine pressure, Bangkok countered with Mario and Jaycee both going close.

In the 56th minute the deadlock was broken when Chakrit drove home from 10 yards, then in the 61st minute on the break, with 3 attackers faced by one defender, the Swatcats spurned a great chance to put the game to bed with a poor cross ending the move. Chakrit then went close with a fine low drive.
On 65 minutes Mario hit a far post shot that was smothered by the home keeper, Korat then defended as series of crosses with Bangkok looking increasingly dangerous.

The Swatcats then began to sit back - too deep in my opinion and allowed intense pressure from the title contenders. This was going to be a testing 20 plus minutes as the visitors swarmed forward hoping to keep their title hopes alive.
In the 76th minute Lindemann conceded a foul just outside the box and from the resulting free kick, Boscovic struck the bar with an excellent dipping drive - game on!! Minutes later a Jaycee header was cleared off the line with the Swatcat’s defence looking slightly panicky.

Prompong, on as a substitute, had a great chance to put the Swatcats two up in the 84th minute following a superb through ball from Chivuta, but Bangkok broke immediately and the inevitable happened as Jaycee cleverly back flicked the ball into the net to draw the Angels level.

A fantastic performance in which they matched the skill and endeavour of arguably the best team in the TPL. Great atmosphere at the 80th Anniversary stadium with a decent crowd (14-15 thousand would be my guess) and I feel renewed hope and enthusiasm for the team.
One only wonders what the result would have been had the home team not decided to play so deep in the last 20 minutes – inviting as they did, the visitors to exert massive pressure. No team can hope to hold out a team containing danger men Jaycee, Boscovic and Mario Gjurovski for that amount of time. One only hopes that lessons have been learnt. There is no doubt in my mind that 3 points were thrown away by this tactical error. “Game management” should be on the agenda at the next team meeting!!!

Were it not for the team’s appalling start they would be fighting for 5th or 6th place given their recent form under Joksic. The form table based on the last 6 results puts us fifth – what a remarkable turnaround.
Posted by: thaiwolf
« on: August 17, 2016, 01:54:43 PM »

NRFC welcome second in the table Bangkok United to the 80th Anniversary Stadium this weekend (KO 7.00 pm, Saturday 20th August – note change of date from Sunday 21st in order to give the Thai national team an extra day for preparation).
A tough test for the in form Swatcat squad.
I think goals may be hard to come by against a well coached Angels defence and this coupled with a formidable attacking force from the visitors leads me to believe that a home defeat is on the cards.

Mind you, given my past record on predictions……….Home win!!!!!


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