Monday, 15 July 2013

Nonthaburi fc 0 Bangkok Christian College 0 - report

Credit: Nhong Tim

After an exciting but disappointing two-all draw last week, Eka dropped another two points at home in a contest against BCC that was quiet until an early second half incident in which sparked hostility in the crowd. 

The game was quiet, with Eka getting the better of it until Sutee threw a silly challenge at a BCC player, who responded with a shove. Sutee then swung for his face and followed with another swing at a second BCC player who rushed into the fray. The result was a red for Suttee and, controversially, only a yellow for the BCC player.

The decisions sparked fury from Sutee and he crowd but I can’t see how anyone can have complaints. The rules are clear - go for anyone’s face and you;re off. The BCC player only gave an angry shove after a very silly kick on the shins that he received.

Eka were awarded a penalty later on but the Christian College goalkeeper - probably the man of the match - performed a very impressive save from Tomi’s kick. Eka continued to have the better of the chances even with the disadvantage, but couldn’t break through.

So we still look for a win in leg two of the season. Normally it’s encouraging to have a youth team as their energy, pace and passion is great to watch. However this game reminded us of a downside, younger players can lack self-control at times and today I believe it cost us the points.

There were minor incidents in the crowd later, which the fan club have been discussing in the hope to avoid a repeat. Some people really need to grow up.

On a positive note, our dip in form has not seen us fall fatally away from the promotion chase. If we learn from the mistakes we made in this match and get back to winning ways, there’s still everything to play for.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Nonthaburi FC 0 Kasetstart Uni 1

Eka fell to defeat and a third successive game without scoring in a tight contest at home against Kasetstat University.

The game was settled by a very well taken goal in the second half from a KU player who wrong-sided his marker and finished clinically. Eka fought back and had a goal correctly disallowed for offside but looked slightly off the pace despite plenty of possession.

We now need to rest and rejuvenate for the trip to North Bangkok FC this weekend.

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Two disappointments

credit: Nhong Tim

After a hard fought goalless draw at Leam Chabang last weekend, Nonthaburi exited the 2013 Thaicom FA Cup after a 0-2 defeat at TPL side Osotspa. The side gave a good account of themselves against opposition two divisions higher and despite these setbacks, can look forward to a hopeful promotion campaign for the rest of the season.

Eka are home to Kasetstart this Saturday.

Thursday, 20 June 2013

2013 mid-season movements

Credit: Nonthaburi FC Facebook page
As the Bangkok and region division prepares to kick off next week after the mid-season break, Nonthaburi have released a list of "ins and outs" as "The Crows" bid to maintain their position at the very top of D2 BKK.

Outgoing players include Jorrin John, the highly-talented but temperamental player who clearly (and forgivably) looked like he was wondering what the heck he was doing in Division 2 much of the time. The former Leicester player has joined Nakhon Nayok and we will miss his link-up play with Tomi, which tore defences apart. Other departees include Patong (no.28) and Watcharit (no.40).

The ten (yes, ten) incoming players include a foreigner named Ebisawa alongside other names, all of which are new to me, as they come from the Muangthong United youth, reserve and scouting setups.   Now, there is no mention of Tomi on the list but next to Ebisawa (in Thai) is a message saying "2nd foreigner". The meaning of that is not clear to me as even with JJ leaving, we have more than 2 foreigners already and here is only one new foreigner. In any case, Tomi staying or leaving could decide what division we are in next season.

Updates on new players and remaining players to come soon.

Eka travel to Leam Chabang next Sunday.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Nonthbauri FC 1 Laem Chabang City 0 - video highlights

Photo credit: Nhong Tim

When Southampton were playing in League One with Championship and even a few BPL quality players, our (then) coach Nigel Adkins was asked how they cope with the rough, physical, kick and rush style tactics of the lower leagues. He replied “We have to win the right to play real football”.

I was reminded of that quote when I watched the highlights of this game, and I was wondering how much harder it must be to win that right when you have a hopelessly incompetent set of officials and an awful pitch.

Jorrin John was blatantly booted in the face in the early stages of the match, the linesman couldn’t have been closer to the incident if he tried, and the ref responded by telling both players “Stop, or I’ll say 'stop' again!”.

LCFC continued to play one of the dirtiest games of football I’ve ever seen and the officials continued to behave like junior cops sent to tackle a mafia ring on their first day of work. Late tackles, kicks, pulling and shoving continued throughout as better players  just tried to get on with the job.

In the end, quality just about shone through with the goal as no. 33 “Got” netted the goal for Eka and our keeper yet again made a superb string of saves to keep us in it. Alassane was dismissed following a shove on his neck by a LCFC player and at the very end of the game, a couple of opposition players displayed their jealousy of Tomi’s ability to actually play football by launching a double assault on him.  I must also say that as much as I admire our great work this season, I wonder how much of a good example our coach is, the way he gets involved and aggressive on every single incident. How can a team expect to show focus and composure when their leader can’t?

But we can take heart from this win that takes us to the top of the table and even greater encouragement from the way that even when everything else went against us, class came through and the better team won this game of football. Keep it up guys.

Thursday, 16 May 2013


During my holiday Eka have continued their good form and sit second place in D2 BKK.

I'll be back in two weeks to continue the reports.

For the person who left a comment basically attacking every Eka player and every official in a recent match, post your comment again, only this time show some backbone and don't post as anonymous, then I'll publish it.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Nonthaburi 2 Roi Et Utd 2 (Nonthaburi win 8-7 on pens)

How we roll

All photo credits: Bank Kammo

Nonthaburi entered round three (also known as the first round proper, just like the English counterpart) last Wednesday after making life a little hard.

Roi Et United took an impressive amount of fans south to Nonthaburi and roared their team on but it was the home side who drew first blood midway through the first half with a goal by Traore following a run from midfield.

The lead was extended after a goalkeeping mistake gifted Tomi a chance, but the English forward still had to keep his composure to finish and he did so.

The game should have been killed off but substitutions changed the flow of the game and Roi Et saw a lot more possession in the final thirty minutes of action, culminating in an injury time equaliser that sent the team and its fans wild.
Everyone got stuck in

As with the previous round, a draw after 90 minutes meant we went straight to penalties. What with the last minute equaliser, our previous penalty win, the surrender of a two goal lead and the fact that Roi Et did not, as far as I know, have any English fans in their end all made me feel that our luck was exhausted. Yet Roi Et missed their first penalty and suddenly it all started to feel like a repeat of the previous cup game. Less so when we missed our second penalty.

From then on it was a heart-stopping, nerve-jangling collection of well-taken penalties from both sides until ...YES! Roi Et miss penalty number seven (if my memory serves me well).

And then we miss our penalty, too. It's that horrid feeling in your gut that hits you when this happens.

So here comes their next name on the list and...YEEEESSSSS! Roi Et miss penalty no.eight!

And then my favourite moment of the game. Our number 14 (Athikun) walked over to the penalty spot. Of course this was sudden death so he had not volunteered to take a penalty and perhaps was just a tad nervous. He looked over to the fans, saw them roaring him on and clenched his fist. I don’t know why, but it was good to see.

He scored. We won. Great job Athikun!

Despite everything that happened - I haven’t even mentioned Cedric sacrificing himself via a late tactical foul that earned him his second yellow of the game - this match wasn’t a classic by any means, thanks in no small part to yet another ref who believes that a strong official has to blow his whistle at least once every ten seconds.  Yet the penalty shoot out was as tense as any I‘ve witnessed and it’s worth noting that even with players like Alasanne playing less than half the game we still managed to overcome a team sitting 3rd in the North East table.

Keep up the great form, lads. If we draw a D1 team at home in the next round, I fancy an upset.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Chamchuree United 0 Nonthaburi FC 2

Copyright 2013 Banjerd Foto

Two second half goals were enough to push Eka up to fourth in D2 BKK as they came out comfortable visitors over Chamchuree United. The pink-shirted opposition were playing away from their usual home of the Chulalonkorn University Stadium and reports state that Nonthaburi looked comfortable all through the game. Tomi added another goal to his tally, he is now top-scorer with six goals already.

Eka take on Roi Et United in the FA Cup tomorrow. KO@1530

Photos of the game here

Goalscorers list:

Friday, 5 April 2013

Nonthaburi 1 Pathum Thani United 1 (Eka win on penalties) - Report

Pathanphong celebrates the shoot-out win
(Credit:Nitinont Image & GraphicStudio )

Nonthaburi broke a long-running cup jinx and finally made it over the first hurdle of a knockout competition with a win over PTU that was as close as the full time score suggests.

Nonthaburi made a few changes to their regular line up, resting Tomi and Alassane and trying out new players such as Asiriya (no.24), who had an excellent second half.

Eka had more possession but struggled to pass through a packed PTU midfield and the visitors opened the scoring midway through the first half with a breakway goal that saw Pathanphong beaten at his far post. The lead was short lived however, as a superb long pass (see the vid) was matched in quality by the lob from no.12, Atapon to even the score.

After half time Nonthaburi introduced Alssane, whose link-up play with John really changed the game. Still the second goal was elusive so, under Thai FA Cup rules, the game went straight to penalties.

PTU netted their first penalty but missed their next three, allowing the home side a win we probably deserved.Credit to both teams for behaving professionally through the shoot-out and well done to the lads for another good game and, finally, a cup win!

Eka will now play Roi Et at home next Wednesday (KO said to be @ 1530 but subject to change) in the second round. The big boys are just one win away.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Eka 1 Customs 0 - Highlights

Nonthaburi 1 SP Customs 0 - Report

Nonthaburi FC moved up to fourth place in D2 BKK with a 1-0 victory over Customs.

Customs crafted the first real chances of the game but Nonthaburi quickly took control and after a low cross from the right goaline set up Tomi for a neat finish. Tomi makes goalscoring look easy, something no other Eka player has managed since the club was formed.

Though the scoreline and performance was less emphatic than previous home games, the home side still controlled most of the action and Customs players began to make clumsy challenges as they become frustrated in the second half. In the dying moments of he match they conceded a penalty. The choice of penalty-taker was defender Cedric. While any player should be capable of scoring a  penalty, I was surprised we chose a defender for the job. Cedric’s penalty was well struck but clipped the bar, and the rebound was saved. The game finished 1-0.

Cedric was still my choice for MOTM in this game as the central defender was always in the right place to clear any inbound passes high and far throughout the game, a straightforward but vital task and again, this type of player is something we’ve lacked in past seasons.

We are home to Pathum Thani United on Wednesday in an FA Cup fixture. KO @ 1530

A feature on Nonthaburi FC fans (Thai):

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Paknampoo NSRU 1 Nonthaburi 0

Eka lost out in an even game following a first half goal from the home home side on a clear, sunny afternoon in Bangkok.

I was unable to attend the game but the highlights below show the difference between the sides was a series of hospital balls played from our own deep midfield throughout he game. I hope the coach will be on to this problem and it can be fixed quickly, as it's more a tactical issue that any lack of talent.

Jorrin John was unable to convert a second half penalty and the opposition goalie did remarkably well to hold the rebound effort at point blank range.

So our run of wins comes to an end but as long as we fix the 'suicide ball' problem in our own third, there's no reason to believe we can't bounce back quickly from this setback.

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Nonthaburi FC 3 Samut Prakan Utd 0

Whoever on the Nonthaburi FC side struck the deal with MTU to act as a  nursery club is responsible for a huge turnaround at the club.

Toni lines up a volley
It’s not just on-pitch performances that have changed. The crowd at this game was the largest I’ve seen and though the vast majority were in Eka colours, there were Phuket FC and plenty of Muangthong shirts, too. The substitutes wore MTU training tops and the whole set-up has a slightly larger feel to it.

But it’s the pitch that counts and without taking any credit away from a good team performance, there’s no doubt which players made the difference today. SP Utd actually made the brighter start and crafted several good chances but once the Nonthaburi attacking line got started, they ran the show. Jorrin John made a powerful run to set up Alassane for the first goal, Tomi latched on to a superb through ball for the second and Eka’s third goal came again from Alassane after a great run and cross from Nathagun (another MTU youth player) and a lovely little touch from Toni.

Jorrin John - Not easy to shake off the ball
In the second half the side sat back a little though even when SP Utd had chances, they took them very poorly. Towards the end of the game there were incidents that have been edited out in the video below, there were two scuffles in injury time which then sparked one of the most hilarious ‘rage off’ competitions between two coaches I’ve ever seen. Both sets of fans behaved impeccably throughout.

This is the first season ever that Eka have looked likely to score more than once in a game. The distribution and intelligence in the play of the squad has also improved and it would be wrong to give sole credit to the MTU imports of Toni, Alassane and John, but they are certainly the catalyst.

Samut Parakan overcame us with ease last season and were level with us before this game.  This time they were dispatched with relative ease in a ten minute spell of the best attacking football I’ve seen at RL level. At the start of the season I said that Nonthaburi fans would be happy just to have a team, and anything else would be a bonus. This is one heck of a bonus.
Photo credits: Nhong Tim

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Happy days! Cup win and big signing

image owned by

If you're an Eka fan, get out and buy your lottery ticket. The boys managed to pull off the rarest of feats - a victory in a cup game - in midweek with a 5-3 win over non league Korat FC, The game did not go to penalties so it is as the scoreline suggests, a goal-fest. It appears that for the first time ever Eka will be a high scoring team this season, though we still look shaky at the back. Overall though, it's 3 wins in a row, equal to our total number of victories in all competitions last season and we've barely started.

But that's not the big news.

The fan club has confirmed the signing (probably a loan, but not confirmed) of Englishman Jorrin John from Muangthong United. Jorrin was a trialist at Leicester City, a large club playing in England's second tier, just three years ago where fans expected big things of him. With Leicester's Thai ownership, he took the unusual step of being loaned from England to Thailand. He was subsequently released by Leicester but impressed Muangthong enough to win a contract there. He was loaned out to Suphanburi last year and due to go on loan to TTM this year but the deal fell through. As such, he has ended up with Eka.

What this amounts to is an English player with experience of football at a far, far higher level and due to play at a higher league club ending up with us. It could be very interesting.

Just think, a few months back we weren't even sure if we had a club to support any more.

Eka play Samut Prakan United at home this Saturday. KO 4pm.

The goals from our cup game

Pictures of the game (thanks Vinnie)

Jorrin John interview  (Feb 2012)

Leicester Fans on Jorrin John (Feb 2012)

Leicester Fans on John in 2008   (Note the mention of threatening to stab a team mate! Hopefully he's mellowed with age. His more recent interviews would suggest so.)


Monday, 11 March 2013

Thai Honda 1 Nonthaburi FC 3

Nonthaburi made it a win and three goals for the second time in a row with a victory at Thai Honda last weekend. Honda were in D1 just two seasons ago and reports say Nonthaburi had to perform well to earn their win.

To emphasise the contrast with our dreadful form last season, consider that one more win would take us over halfway to matching our total points tally for last season!

Eka play Samut Prakan United at home on Saturday, but first they face non-league Korat FC in the Thai FA Cup (another healthy sign that we are entering this competition at all). Vinnie tells me that Korat - not to be confused with Nakhon Ratachasima FC - use only local players. Nonthaburi will be looking to perform another rare feat for the club by actually advancing past the first stage of a cup competition! Good luck guys!

match photos here

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Eka 3 RBAC 1 - report

Any football fan knows that great feeling that comes with the first home game of the season. The sunshine, the meeting of old friends and the feeling that Saturday afternoons have a purpose once more.

Today it’s the clash of nursery sides as Nonthaburi (MTU’s Nursery side) take on RBAC BEC TERO (Obviously BEC Tero’s nursery club). I wasn’t expecting too much as despite the massive clearout of players this season, we had started with the same form as 2012, i.e. losing and not scoring.

Unfortunately the teamlist I previously posted on my blog looks to have been superseded so I will have to start identifying players again. What I do know is that we have four African players including Cedric, who was with us late into last season and three others I suspect are all loaned from the Muangthong youth team. The foreign player I'm unaware of is simply shirt-named 'Toni'.

The first half was very reminiscent of Eka sides of old, decent football going forward with very little threat on goal.At half time it was 0-0.

Karamoko Alassane - quality
The second half was very different. MTU broke a very long scoring drought with a close finish from African player number 26, Toni. RBAC equalled within a minute but we restored the lead with great link up play between Toni and another African player, number 10,Karamoko Alassane. I am sure this guy is a loanee as he showed great skill and control but his body language suggested he might not be overjoyed playing at this level. In any case his finish and his triple somersault to celebrate looked great.

By now the three Africans were running the show and a superb volley from Toni made it 3-1 and though RBAC pulled one back to make it 3-2, Eka’s African trio were by now just having great fun going forward. Toni went down under a soft challenge to get an RBAC player his second yellow - poor lad started walking before the ref even reached into his pocket - and Glassinie was replaced by another African player, Traore to see the game out. 3-1, I honestly cannot remember the last time I saw us win at home or score three goals in one game.

Overall this was a great second half performance and the list of goalscorers - all MTU loanees I suspect - should tell the story of what makes us different this season. If we can keep up this standard of attacking performance and tighten up at the back, we can make a top half finish. But what’s more important than hat is that we are still here, still have a team to cheer and still get to enjoy an afternoon at the football. Whoever made that possible, I thank you.

Photo credits: Nitinont Image & GraphicStudio's Page

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

New season, same results

It may be a new season, but it has a very deja vu feel about it for Eka.

The crows are already bottom of RL D2 BKK, without scoring any goals after 3 games (two league, one league cup).

To be fair, all 3 games were away from home (the opening game was switched to an away fixture at short notice).

The first home game is against RBAC - Tero this Saturday, when I'll have a chance to assess the team. And at least we have a team to asses.

League table after two games (after our most recent 0-3 defeat)

Monday, 11 February 2013

Opening game lost, new shirts

Eka lost their opening game of 2013 away to Samut Prakan Utd in a Toyota League Cup match. The score was 0 - 2.

Samut Prakan were among the early frontrunners for promotion last season so there is no shame in this defeat. Besides, the away fans were just delighted to have a club and the new squad were looking to gel.

The new squad and new home strip can be seen here.

..and a  preview of the away kit can be seen here:

I love the home kit, though I do wonder what the point was of producing a home kit well over halfway through last season was if it's not being used again. The away kit I think would be fine if we didn't try to keep the club's traditional purple colour on the crest. It clashes with the other colours. I'll probably end up buyiong both though.

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Nonthaburi FC 2013 squad

The management weren't bluffing when they said there'd be a massive clearout. I recognise just two of the names here.

News of today's opening game and TLC Cup tie to follow.

1 - Intikorn Kangsarakdon

2 Sucharat Sangmar

3 Natchanon Keawprasit

7 Wassan Samasin

8 Watlagorn Kraiting

9 Attachai Boonsi

11 - Chatchai Tapted

12 Wontawee Thepwong

14 - Arthit Kanmeetuwan

16 Wongsakorn Chaikuntoywin

17 Apirak Daolung

19 Kan Gleebpung

21 Noppakorn Uljalern

26 Chaitwat Bularn

27 Prapoom Seechai

30 Pithkapong Januwam

31 Saythasuk Suwawit

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Kick off

Eka are ready to begin their new lease of life with an away trip to Samut Prakan United in the TLC Cup this weekend. The league kicks off the following week, at home to Assumption.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Foreigners in Eka squad

Eka have named their provisional squad for the upcoming 2013 campaign and three foreigners have been included. At this stage, I'm not sure if the players are directly employed or come via the feeder deal with Muangthong.

The 3 are....

a) KARAMOKO ALASSANE (previously played for Chamchuri United )

b) TRAORE MAHAMA (Name sounds familiar but I don't know why)

c) GOGOUA CEDRIC (Briefly appeared for us last season towards the end and looked very useful)

The full squad will be listed once I get the names translated.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Nonthaburi - Muangthong's new nursery club?

Several unofficial sources have stated that Nonthaburi’s squad will consist primarily of Muangthong United reserves and/or youth players next season. There has also been a media report quoting Nonthaburi's coach as saying there will be a "eighty percent clear out" as the club look to avoid a repeat of last season's disastrous campaign. (See the new fixture list, in Thai, here )

I find this to be a good move. It makes sense for MTU to use Eka as feeder club - raher than 'official' feeder club Phuket FC -  since they are close by and clearly not a threat to MTU. Eka, for their part, get to acquire players of a high caliber than they can afford to pay for (since the club’s budget is basically zero this year).

The arrangement is likely to be highly informal. I doubt any extra financial (or other) benefits are coming Eka’s way, but this time three months ago, we would all have jumped at the chance simply to re-enter the DL, let alone act as a nursery club for the best team in Thailand.

Last season’s vice-captain Passakorn has joined Laemchabang City Football club. Passakorn was a player I initially didn't rate but won me over with his courage, effort and spirit. I wish him well.

And this picture caption from the Eka FB page states the 3 Korean kids could be featuring for Eka, via MTU, next season. It could well be a joke, it could be players from visiting Gyeongnam FC borrowing MTU kits to train in.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Eka back from the dead!

It's the news we've all been waiting for and now it's official: Nonthaburi FC are back!

Eka will participate in the Bangkok and Vicinity Division, consisting of 14 teams.

The club still have no major sponsor and as such will continue as per last year, using youth players and almost certainly no foreign players, possibly bar one or two African players.

Naturally, Nonthaburi fans are just delighted to have a team to cheer and I'll be certain to attend as many home games as possible and a few away games, too.

Looking at D2 as a whole, the insanity continues. There are eighty-four, yes, eighty-four teams vying for promotion spots of just three or four places.

When, oh when, will someone inject a tiny bit of logic into proceedings and create an extra division or at least a two-tier RL system?