FOUGHT HARD: MTUTD unable to stop Buriram goals, but never let up

SCG Muangthong United were unable to match the scoring power of Buriram and went down 3 - 1 in the Chang FA Cup final. It is a testament to Buriram, whose goal scorers, including league leader Diogo Luis Santo, have combined for an impressive 98 goals in the 2015 season.

SCG Muangthong were without captain Datsakorn Thonglo, who is not fit following the injury that has kept him out of training for the last month. They were also without Thai national player Sarach Yuyen, suspended for this match. The holes in the line up were filled with Piyaphon coming in at left back, and Artit Daosawang, in only his third match after his ACL injury. The change ups resulted in the 5th different line up in as many games for Muangthong United.

SCG Muangthong United played a cautious first half, with the defenders tracking closely on Santo and De Macena to deny shots. Yet Buriram had several strikes at goal, but Kawin was up to the challenges. BurirAM dominated possession in the first half, though Muangthong United were dangerous on the counter attack, with several slick passing plays and runs through the middle. Despite this Muangthong did not manage a shot on net in the first half.

The breaking point of the half came at the 43rd minute when Buriram were awarded a penalty shot, a decision that had Head Coach Dragan Talajic up in arms and dismayed.

Muangthong United started the second half stronger, with changes early on. Yet Buriram netted their 2nd goal at 51 minutes with an easy header in after the cross was not contested. The Muangthong defence were looking vulnerable from the left side, and Buriram’s two Brazilian strikers were able to take advantage.

At the 63rd minute Dragan Talajic brought in the young striker Chananan, with Seksit coming off. However any chance of mounting a come back was squashed at the 70th minute when, on a counter attack, Buriram added a third. The goal was typical of the way the match went for SCG Muangthong United, with the defence and Kawin repelling the first and second attempts, only to have the ball fall onto the feet of open midfielder Jakapun who had lots of time to find the open side of the net.

Muangthong United were to keep up the pressure and Mario Gjurovski netted a goal at the 83rd minute. This came minutes after Muangthong almost scored in a goal mouth scramble. An apparent handball had half the Muangthong team over at the side line talking to the assistant referee.

The last 10 minutes of the match were a wild affair, with 3-on-1 plays or open breakaways to the Muangthong United goal, and Kawin and the defenders worked hard to thwart the attacks and keep the goal count at 3. Muangthong to their credit never gave up, even though Mario Gjurovsksi was shown the red card in the last few moments on a tackle that the referee decided was too harsh.


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