HEBERTY POWER!! Injury time goal salvages a point for beleaguered Kirin

SCG Muangthong United earn a point thanks to an injury time goal to draw 2-2 with Suphanburi F.C., Thai League One matchday 10 at the SCG Stadium.

The Kirin were without many of their first team starters and the reserve bench was called upon heavily. Injured were: Celio Santos, Wattana, Adisorn, Adisak, Jaja Coelho, and Nukoolkrit. Meanwhile Charyl Chappuis was unavailable due to a ban.

A clear challenge in crafting the starting line up for SCG Muangthong United was deciding on how to fill the key centre back role. With only Naoaki Aoyama available for selection, intern coach Santi brought in youngster Patcharapol Inthanee, with Tristan Do alternating midfield and wing back with Suporn, and Peerapat in the left wing back position. Sarach Yooyen captained the midfield and the team, Thossawat, Ratchapol. and Heberty Fernandes rounded out the midfield, with another youngster Sorawit Panthong receiving another first team selection as forward. Prasit once again started as keeper.

The Kirin were quick onto the scoreboard with Tristan Do opening the count at 12 minutes. Heberty's free kick curled over the wall and required a tough block from the Suphanburi keeper. The rebound, however, came out towards the centre of the box, where Tristan Do was the only player following the shot for a header goal.

Suphanburi responded with some pressure on the Kirin back line but were vulnerable to the counter attack. Tristan Do almost had a second goal at the 20th minute. Heberty stepped over a pass setting up a run by Ratchapol. His pass out to Tristan found the wingback with room to shoot, however the low drive was wide of the far post.

Suphanburi were to get a goal back on a penalty shot awarded at the 27th minute. Initially the referee waved off the challenge and called play on, however the Suphanburi player went down and the referee changed his mind. It was a disappointing turn of the events that quickly let Suphanburi back into the game.

The second half saw SCG Muangthong United maintain the majority of possession. Suphanburi, however, were to get the go ahead goal 10 minutes in when the near post forward headed in a glancing ball off the corner kick.

Around this time interim coach Santi subbed in another youngster, striker Chenrop Samphaodi, hoping to find a way through the Suphanburi defenders.

Following the go ahed goal Suphanburi seemed to go into full defensive shut down, with all players back defending. A couple of close chances came, including a shot at the 80th minute that was off a defender that almost caught the keeper going the wrong direction.

Yet the quality of a team is often revealed in the final moments. SCG Muangthong United were relentless in the pressure to score, and it was just a matter of time. One minute into the 5 minutes of added time, Heberty Fernandes lifted a shot from the right flank that curved around and over the keeper and into the far side of the net.

With the point the Kirin hold onto third place after 10 games of the 2018 season. The significance of today's draw, earned against a strong side while best with injuries, will perhaps reveal itself fully as the rest of the season develops.

SCG Muangthong United now have a thankful 10 day rest period over the Thai Songkran holiday, with the next match away to Chonburi FC. Hopefully this will be a chance for the starting players to recover from their injuries.

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