Thais different class as Macau hit for six (October 09, 2007)

First step on long road to S. Africa completed


Thailand kicked off their 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign with a 6-1 thrashing of Macau in the first leg of their preliminary-round tie at Supachalasai stadium last night.

Two goals from Vietnam-based Sarayoot Chaikamdee after 10 and 47 minutes, and one apiece from Teerasil Dangda (20), Teerathep Winothai (53), Patiparn Phetphun (81) and Datsakorn Thonglao (90) put the kingdom in the driving seat to advance to the next stage.

The return leg in Macau is scheduled for next Monday.

"Actually, I did not expect that we would score six goals," said Thailand coach Chanvit Phalajivin after the match.

"I thought just two or three goals would be enough."

In fact, Thailand could have won by a much bigger margin had their finishing been sharper. They squandered numerous chances in a virtually one-sided match and only led 2-1 at half-time.

Before a decent crowd, Thailand started with three strikers Teerathep, Teerasil and Sarayoot who was re-called to the national side after being dropped from the 2007 Asian Cup squad.

Thailand's first goal came in the 10th minute when Sarayoot went clear and beat Leong Chon Kit in the Macau goal. Ten minutes later Teerasil's header put Thailand 2-0 up.

However, the visitors, ranked 188th in Fifa rankings, did not intend to lose without a fight.

They stunned Thailand after 22 minutes when Cheung Geofredo de Sousa tapped in a rebound after Thailand's goalkeeper Kosin Hatthairattakul failed to hold a free-kick.

Thailand got off to a fast start after the interval. Sarayoot's second goal after 47 minutes and Teerathep's spot kick gave the home side a 4-1 lead that eased the nerves of their coach and supporters.

Defender Patiparn Phetphun's strike after 81 minutes and playmaker Datsakorn's goal in the dying moments completed the rout.

"Some of our players were a bit tired because they had played in the Thailand Premier League on Friday. We started with Sarayoot because he was fresh. He did not play in the Vietnam league at the weekend," said Chanvit.

"I am pleased with the result. In the next match, I am confident that we will beat Macau and qualify for the next round."

Macau coach Masanaga Kageyama said Thailand were a strong team and hoped that his men got a better result in the second leg.