With two weeks to go till Port kick off against Ratchaburi in the opening game of the T1 season here’s an in depth look at the squad we have. The transfer window closes on February 22nd, so there is still a chance there might be one or two new names to talk about. However this the squad as it stands now.
Worawut (36) looks like our first choice keeper. After a shaky start to his time at Port Worawut (36) settled down and gained in confidence. I wasn’t a big fan of his first off, after a couple of howling errors. However last season showed he’s a reliable keeper. He’s been a great shot stopper and now he’s more confident coming out on corners. I think he also benefited from Meechok (20) coming in half way through last season and giving the back four a bit more quality and stability. Rattanai (17) impressed in the cup performances, but being a bit young and with less experience I think Worawut (36) will get the nod, for my money he’s the right choice. Rattanai (17) deserves a run out in cup games. If Worawut (36) picks up an injury it could give Rattanai(17) a chance to shine. He could come in and keep Worawut on the bench given half a chance. Weera (1, oddly number 1 but our third choice keeper), is still around, apart from one outstanding game against TOT, where he saved and scored in a marathon penalty shoot-out he didn’t impressed much. He started the PTT Rayong friendly and didn’t look bad, and it’s difficult to find anyone half decent to fill the role of third choice keeper. Watchara is out on loan to BBCU again this year after spending a full season there in 2016. I think if we had injuries to Worawut(36) and Rattanai(17) a match fit Watchara would be recalled as soon as possible.
Our captain and rock at the back David Rochela(22) is joined in the centre of defence by Elias Dolah (40). Having a Thai/Swedish player looks a great choice. With his size it’s like having another foreign player on the pitch. He played well for Songklaa last season and is looking to step his game to make a challenge for the Thai national team. Todsapol (6) is still with us ready to step into the centre and offer a decent level of cover if needed. “Nirun” (second name not known) is another Thai/Swedish player we have. He was bought last week and he played the last twenty minutes of the PTT game at centre back. He is a massive player tall and well built. He looks like more cover for centre back, we’ll see if he gets on the subs bench. Meechok (20) at right back came into the squad as an 18 year old and has grown in confidence every time I’ve seen him. Looks to be a bit stronger this year and looks like another definite starter for Port. Nitipong (34) seems to be the immediate cover for right back. I’m not sure that’s the right way to go. I like Nitipong (34) as cover in midfield, but I’m not sure he can cover the right back role. Our main problem is at left back Panpanpong (19). He is tough enough, but has looked far from the complete player in friendlies. Looks nervous to go forward and not convincing when he does. He has been favoured over Piyachat (23), he’s also a half decent choice but neither completely impress. I really thought we’d be buying in someone else to fill the left back role. With a bit of luck we still might.
Has Panpanpong (19) got enough to keep nifty T1 wingers in check? If he does we could be looking at a solid back four to deal with the S.F.S (Scary Foreign Strikers) that tend to batter defences week in week out in the T1.
Worawut (36) will be tested more in T1, but he will have an improved back four in front of him. The outlook is good, early meetings with Bangkok United, Suphanburi and Buriram will really test them. We have these three teams in the first five T1 games. I just hope panic doesn’t take hold in the boardroom. If we don’t get anything against these clubs hiring five managers will not solve problems at the back. Buying a better left back might help.