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Tom’s Transfer Talk: Training Day

 

Port returned to training on Thursday, giving fans the opportunity to see some new arrivals for the first time, as well as bid farewell to some of the old guard.

Among those spotted in action at PAT Stadium for the first time were attacking midfielder Bajram Nebihi, wingers Chakrit Rawanprakone and Terens Puhiri and defensive midfielders Athibordee Atirat and Kim Sung-Hwan. It seems that fellow new arrival Dragan Boskovic has not yet returned from his holidays, but is expected back soon.

 

We think Jadet probably prefers standing next to Terens Puhiri (r) rather than Bajram Nebihi (l)

 

The super-fans from Facebook group เกรียนสิงห์ท่าเรือ also caught up with Port’s latest signing around the back of Zone A. The man in question is 23 year old forward Arthit Butjinda, who joins from Buriram and will add depth to Port’s striking options, although his rather underwhelming record in lower divisions suggests that depth is about all he will be adding. Well, that’s the current state of Thai strikers for you! If Arthit doesn’t whet your appetite, bear in mind that Muangthong have just brought in Chenrop Sampaodi from Police Tero, who has netted just 3 times in 61 T1 appearances.

 

Arthiti Butjinda. Photo by เกรียนสิงห์ท่าเรือ

 

For those player-spotting in the coming days, Nebihi was seen wearing number 18, Chakrit number 8, Puhiri number 88, Athibordee number 92, Kim number 39, Nurul number 31, and Bodin number 15, although these could well change. Additionally, Pakorn has switched to wearing number 7, and two players from the youth team are taking part in first team training. Forward Chanayut Jejue ha been seen wearing number 29 and 99 shirts, while Sarawin Phakdeekan is wearing Pravinwat’s number 55 shirt (his loan from Bangkok Glass was only 6 months, and is now finished.)

 

Chanayut and Sarawin

 

There were also some players in plain-clothes who were bidding farewell to their teammates, namely Pakasit Sansook (2), Ekkapoom Potharungroj (8), Wuttichai Tathong (14) and Piyachart Tamaphan (23). These four, all over the age of thirty, were very unlikely to see any significant action in Port’s much-improved 2018 squad, and have been sensibly released. Pakasit, who has been running a coaching school with former national team star Datsakorn Thonglao, may well decide to hang up his boots, but Piyachart will return to Ubon UMT, where he spent the second half of 2017 on loan. He will be joined in Isaan by Wuttichai, and both will be coached by former Port boss Gary Stevens next season. Whilst we’re largely glad to see fat being trimmed from the squad, it’s always sad to see a fan-favourite like Ekkapoom move on. He has yet to find a new club, but we hope he finds himself playing regularly in either T1 or T2 next season!

An additional departure which was announced on Wednesday was Narakorn Khana, who along with Ekkapoom fell victim to the influx of new wingers. Narakorn was scooped up from BBCU after their liquidation last season, but failed to make an appearance in the league, and will be playing for Navy in 2018. It can also now be confirmed that defender Pravinwat Boonyong, who came in on loan after Hansson’s exit last season, has returned to parent club Bangkok Glass.

 


 

Phew! There’s of course a lot going on, with more arrivals and departures expected over the coming days, so we will do out best to keep you posted. Happy New Year from Transfer Talk!

 

Pravinwhat? Port Move Quickly To Replace Hansson

 

Port have moved quickly to replace departed youngster Niran Hansson, bringing in 27 year old Thai centre back Pravinwat Boonyong on a six month loan deal from Bangkok Glass. As was painfully clear in Wednesday’s friendly Port are short of numbers at the back, but management have acted quickly and decisively, bringing in a player who has represented the National Team as recently as March, when he was called up for the double header against Saudi Arabia and Japan.

Whilst Pravinwat has only ever been a peripheral figure in the national team squad, his signing must be seen as a coup for Port, who had temporarily put themselves in a tricky situation by releasing Hansson. Pravinwat has played 65 games for Bangkok Glass over the last few years, and at the beginning of the season started 6 of the first 8 games. He fell out of favour though, being replaced by Japanese powerhouse Jurato Ikeda, and has spent most of the rest of the first leg on the bench.

Assuming that Port’s first-choice duo Rochela and Dolah stay fit, it seems most likely that Pravinwat will be spending time on the Port bench, too, although he will almost certainly be the man to replace either should suspension or injury strike. We know how Jadet likes experience, and Pravinwat certainly isn’t lacking in that department.

At 1m79 (5ft10) Pravinwat isn’t particularly tall for a centre back, but his stocky build and strong upper body make him a match for most T1 strikers in physical battles. He has also been a back-up penalty taker for Bangkok Glass and the National Team, although in the few games I’ve seen him play, he certainly wouldn’t be my choice. Let’s just say he’s more Tony Adams than Gerard Pique when it comes to bringing the ball out from the back!

Welcome to PAT Stadium, Pravinwat!