Pakistan, Thailand football clash today (18 July 2009)

LAHOREóThe sixth Pakistan-Thailand clash in international soccer arena will be recorded when both the teams will face each other in the International friendly tomorrow, Saturday at Thunder Dome stadium Bangkok.The Saturdayís tie will be third match for Pakistan in Thai Tour who lost two warm-up matches: 0-2 against Thailand U23 on Tuesday and 0-4 against Thailand U19 0-4 on Thursday.

Thailand is 50 places better than Pakistan in current FIFA/World Ranking. Thaiís record in track record between two nations, winning four of the five matches. They will be hard nut to crack, enjoying 117th berth in ranking, compared to Pakistanís 167.

Thailand have the honour of winning Tiger Cup thrice while their U23 tram wrapped up titles of South East Asian Games 13 times. The SEA Games are an age-restricted (U-23) tournament (unlike the Tiger Cup). On the other hand Pakistan have never won the SAFF Championship while their U23 team clinched the SAG tite record four times.

It is interesting that Pakistan yet to score Thailand during last 40 years after thrashing them 7-0 on August 9, 1960 during 4th Merdeka Cup at KL. Since then it is one way trtaffic with Thailand winning four internationals in line.

Thailand earned their first ever win over Akbar Raisani-led Pakistan with close-fouight 1-0 win at their own 14th King Cup on November 11, 1981. It was followed by 6-0 win during Seoulís Asian Games on September 29,1986. Pakistani skipper was then Armyís stopper Muhammad Naveed.

The two matches between two in World Cup qualifiers were also belonged to Thais who won the first leg 3-0 at Lebanon on May 15, 2001 and completed double with 6-0 win at Thailand 13 days later. The soccer enthusiasts of both nations are following the one-off Test with keenness as a match will be included in mathematical method of monthly FIFA World Ranking.

The match will bring two European coaches infront of each other too when Pakistani coach George Kottan (Austria) will face tough coaching skill of another European, Liverpool-born Thai coach Peter Reid.

Previous Meetings between Pakistan and Thailand in international soccer circuit 05/08/1960-Thailand 0:7 Pakistan, Kuala Lumpur (4th Merdeka Cup) 11/11/1981-Thailand 1:0 Pakistan, Bangkok (14th Kings Cup) 29/09/1986-Thailand 6:0 Pakistan, Daegu (Asian Games) 15/05/2001-Thailand 3:0 Pakistan, Beirut (World Cup Qualifier First Leg)

As for the two teamsí performances in their respective regions, Thailand have won Tiger Cup thrice besides 13 South East Asian (SEA) Games football titles to their credit.

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