If it were an away match, Pattaya United’s players would probably be asking for the goalpost and crossbar diameters to be checked by the officials. Even Chainat’s coach conceded afterwards that the visiting Hornbills were a little fortuinate after seeing the efforts of several Dolphin players ricochet off the post and crossbar in the two teams’ Thai Premier League encounter in Pattaya last Sunday, July 31.
Both teams started scrappily but Pattaya soon got into their stride, dominating play and getting off several shots on target. The pressure paid off as the Dolphins took the lead through Supravee’s beautiful strike into the top right corner of the Chainat goal in the 25th minute.
The Hornbills dangerous forward, Sinama Pongolle was being well marshaled by the Pattaya defence but eventually he did make an impact, equalizing via a disputed penalty on the half hour mark and then putting the visitors into the lead 2 minutes before the half time break. It was a cruel blow to United who had dominated for most of the half.
Pattaya pressed forward after the break and saw several goal bound efforts cleared off the line or denied by the woodwork. They had to be wary however of the dangerous Chainat counter attacks and it was through one such move in the 63rd minute that the Hornbills increased their advantage as Pongolle’s shot rebounded off Patiwat and fell fortuitously at his feet of Sho who tapped in from 3 yards out.
With United camped in the Chainat half and getting more desperate for a goal, the visitors finally put the game out of reach in the 84th minute via another lightning counter attacking move that saw Sho score his second goal of the match.
Two minutes later Pattaya defender Jae Ho succeeded where his forwards had faltered as he connected with a corner kick to make the score 2-4 but it proved to be too little too late for the Dolphins.
With 9 games remaining, United need at least 5 more points to stay safe of relegation zone but they still have an outside chance of a top 10 finish. The Dolphins’ next game is away to Super Power Samatprakon on the 6th August.