United face tough start to 2017 season

first_imgThis coming Saturday sees the start of the 2017 Thai Premier League season with local side Pattaya United visiting Bangkok based BEC Tero Sasana.  Pre-season has seen whole sale changes to the Dolphins squad with only three players still at the club who started the last game of the 2016 season against Korat FC.This transfer activity has seen 20 players join the club while 19 others have departed.  Despite this large movement of players there has been great optimism coming from the squad who have been preparing for 2017 at their training base at Karti Thanee Country ClubPattaya United’s Wellington Priori.Two of the most interesting newcomers are both on loan from SCG Muangthong United.  Left winger Chaiwat Buran and centre midfield Peeradon Chamratsamee optimize the young and talented Thai players that manager Yutthana Thaweesappasuk will have available for selection.The success of the season will depend on how well the foreign signings are able to use their experience to blend the side together.  Those supporters who witnessed the 2015 promotion winning season will not forget the wonderful contributions made by South Korean centre back Lee Won Young, Brazilian midfielder Wellington Priori and Serbian striker Milan Bubalo. With these three player returning to the Pattaya squad for the 2017 season it is understandable why there are positive noises coming out Dolphins Stadium.  However, despite the efforts of Coach Ahn, pre-season results have left a lot of questions unanswered with defeats against Thai Honda Ladkrabang FC and Port FC.  Last weekend’s 3-0 victory at Rayong FC plus other wins against Air Force United FC and Hougang FC show what the squad is capable of though when it gels on the field.The side will do well to better its 2016 position of 12th and much will depend on the start that United make to the new season.  This will not be easy as the opening schedule throws up some difficult challenges.  Following Pattaya’s opening game at BEC they then play highly fancied Chonburi FC at home, followed by a visit to title candidates Buriram United.last_img

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