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2020 Vision: Bangkok Utd

 

Once again, the much-fancied Angels flattered to deceive in 2019, coming up trophyless once more despite having arguably the strongest squad in T1. But with Mano Polking still in charge of a squad that has been together for a long time, could 2020 finally be their year? Here’s Svein Falk Lorentzen with his thoughts…

How did your team perform in 2019? Where do they need to improve?

Poorly! The whole season was a big disappointment. Many key players were out for a very long time (10-20 games), several poor decisions by referees, and suspensions ruined our season. Neither Havenaar or Jaycee John could deliver when Bonilla were out. They haven`t been replaced yet either, so getting another forward is needed, but seems we won`t.

Transfer window – which new signings are you most excited about? Which departing players are you sorry to see go/happy to see the back of?

Will be interesting to see what Hajime Hosogai and Brenner can do, but can`t say I`m excited about any of our 2 signings (yet). Ekkachai will be missed due to something often happened when he came on when we needed goals, but he wouldn`t get much playing time, so the right time to let him go.

Happy with your club’s coach?

Yes! Happy that Mano`s staying for at least one more season. There were so many things that were out of his control last season that he deserves another shot at it. Would love to see him lift a trophy this season.

What are your realistic ambitions for the 2020 season?

Until Bonilla was replaced by an unknown Brenner, due to injury, I would have said to win one or more trophies. Now I`m far from certain we can. We knew what we had with Bonilla, a player who would score 20+ goals if fit all season, but really don`t know if Brenner can fill his shoes. Don`t know who will score the needed goals if Brenner doesn`t.

Which teams will be in contention for the title? Which teams will struggle to survive?

Top-5 will most likely be Bangkok United, Buriram United, Port, Chiangrai United and Muangthong United. In what order I don`t know. Rayong will go down, and several teams will have a big fight to avoid going down with them.

What 3 things would you change about Thai football?

Thailand really need better referees! Last season was the worst ever from the officials!
I would like to see the end of clubs having high numbers of players out on loan, and clubs having many players on loan. You shouldn`t be allowed to have more than 3-4 players on loan and certainly not more than 2 from one club.
And NO persons, companies, groups or whatever should be allowed to have any influence at more than one club. At least not in the same league!
I could go on for a while, but you said only 3 things… 🙂

 

Thanks Svein! Good luck to Bangkok Utd this season – about time Mano gets that trophy he deserves…

 

Tim Russell

Tim Russell

The founder and editor of The Sandpit, Tim has been in SE Asia since 2003 and in Bangkok since 2012, where he runs a travel tech business. Tim has followed Port FC since 2014, and is also a fan of his hometown club Coventry City, and French club AS St-Etienne. He has written for the likes of Football365, ITV.com, NME and The Quietus, and is a regular contributor to God Is In the TV. He's a keen photographer and his work can be seen on his website.

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