|1||Paitoon Kasemnet (0)|
|2||Nuttakorn Budnonsang (0)|
|3||Sant Pimpaksorn (0)|
|4||Bani Abeiku (0)|
|5||Phossawee Kiatkangwankul (0)|
|6||Kitti Soraro (0)|
|7||Jiranawut Thiprod (0)|
|8||Pakpoom Manaying (0)|
|9||Philemon Onobominuru Abel (0)|
|10||*Jozef Tirer (0)|
|11||David Le Bras (0)|
|12||Jiranawut Thiprod (0)|
|13||*Ekarat Bupasiri (0)|
|14||Pratheep Supapong (0)|
|NAKHON RATCHASIMA F.C.||3|
The first teamers returned after the reserves got an outing in the cup at Yasothon in midweek. However, first-choice goalkeeper Prasit and leading scorer Thanawat were both still missing. The coach played two up front for the first time at home this season as new signing Philemon, who impressed at Udon, partnered Jozef Tirer. David Le Bras was on the right, Jiranwaut on the left and Pakpoom and Bani in the middle; Sant at left back, Nuttakorn at right back and Kitti and Phossawee completed the line up in central defence. A traditional 4-4-2 then as coach Thewet abandoned his favoured 4-5-1 in Thanawat's absence.
In true Thai style, your reporter arrived fashionably late and missed Jozef Tirer's 12th minute opener. The Slovakian should have made it 2-0 at around the half hour mark, but his header from a David-Le-Bras-cross flashed wide. Korat fairly dominated the rest of the first half and created several decent half-chances. Kalasin, cheered on non-stop for 90 minutes by twenty or thirty travelling fans, looked comfortable in possession but never really looked an attacking threat in the first period. A fairly straight-forward first half for Korat finished 1-0 to the hosts. The general feeling was that a second goal early in the second half would pretty much kill off Kalasin.
Much of the second half played out the same as the first: Korat looked assured without really setting the game alight whilst Kalasin looked reasonable enough but never seemed capable of getting back into the game. Philemon, who didn't have as good a game as he had done a week earlier in Udon, limped off in the 60th minute and was replaced by Lee Hong Seok as Korat reverted to 4-5-1.
A satisfactory performance by the home side looked destined to end 1-0, but the game suddenly got interesting. Tirer tapped in his second goal in the 87th minute and Bani nodded in from close range in the 89th minute to give the hosts perhaps a more comfortable victory than they deserved, or so everyone thought. A minute later Kalasin pulled one back, and hearts were in home fans' mouths when the visitors scored again with a low shot in the third minute of injury time. Hopes that the referee would blow for full time from the restart were dashed as the man in yellow, who had had a poor game full of fussy over-officious decisions, played on for a further thirty or forty seconds. Time enough for Kalasin to get the ball into the Korat box again, but it came to nothing as Korat held on for the win.
A 'funny old game' indeed, to use the most cliched and pointless saying in the book. A game which had 1-0 written all over it was blessed with four goals in six minutes. Those late goals for Kalasin could serve a useful purpose for Korat and their coach, though. The Oranges' defence is not as strong as the statistics suggest, and Kalasin's late strikes have brought some of the problems to the surface. Coach Thewet acknowledged these problems in his post-match comments when he said "we played all right to get the three points today, but we must review the game and look at and work on the errors that were made."
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