on 20th July 2001
Thais make Man United work
Posted July 30, 2001
Thailand put up a spirited display to restrict English champions
Manchester United to a 2-1 victory in front of a near-capacity
crowd at Rajamangala Stadium yesterday.
It was United's third victory on their Asian tour, but by far
their most difficult match, the Old Trafford side having enjoyed
6-0 and 8-1 wins respectively over Malaysia and Singapore.
Reinforced by their Singapore-based players, Thailand put up a
better performance than 10 days earlier when they lost to
With Kiatisak "Zico" Senamuang and Tawan Sripan showing
a lot of pace and Anuruck Srikerd busy in midfield, Thailand began
in lively fashion and gave the Man U defence plenty of work.
United also looked dangerous up front but they found Thai
goalkeeper Phansa Meesathum in top form.
After a spell of pressure United took the lead in the 29th minute
with a well-taken goal by skipper-for-the-day Ryan Giggs from the
edge of the area.
Within five minutes Thailand equalised with an excellent goal by
Tawan. The experienced Thai star turned his man on the edge of the
box and fired it sweetly past United goalie Fabien Barthez. The
stadium exploded as the Thai players celebrated the goal which
also earned them a big financial bonus.
The action continued at both ends with Man U getting the better
chances. Phansa saved splendidly when Andy Cole was put through
and then Ruud van Nistelrooy's shot hit the post. The teams went
in with the score 1-1.
There was some disappointment in the crowd when David Beckham did
not appear for the second half which saw United bring on six
players _ Raimond van der Gouw, Philip Neville, Luke Chadwick, Roy
Keane, Quinton Fortune and Dwight Yorke. United began with more
purpose in the second half, restricting Thailand to sporadic
Thailand came close in the 62nd minute when a cross from Dusit
Chalermsaen caused momentary panic in the United defence, but no
Thai player could force the ball home.
United continued to put pressure on the Thai defence which was
holding up admirably considering many of the team had played
several matches earlier in the week.
In the 69th minute, Chadwick came close but was thwarted by Phansa,
who had an excellent match.
Paul Scholes came on as substitute for Nicky Butt and almost
scored twice in a couple of minutes, one shot whistling past the
post, another screaming over the bar.
United were eventually rewarded for their pressure when Yorke
headed home a cross by Fortune in the 78th minute. Thailand
desperately tried to grab a draw but the score remained 2-1 at the
United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was full of praise for the Thai
team. "It was an exciting game and I think the Thai people
should be proud of their team. They really played very well
Ferguson had particular praise for midfielder Anuruck. "He
played really well in the first half," he said.
Yorke, who was named United's man of the match, said he was
pleased to have scored. "Every striker needs to score to keep
up his confidence."
Thailand's team manger Virat Charnpanich said he was very happy
with his side's performance. "It was important for us to play
well with the World Cup qualifiers coming up."
Thailand's man of the match, Tawan, said he was delighted to score
against United as they had been his favourite team since he was a
Nine of the United players flew back to England last night while
the rest, including Beckham, will fly back this afternoon.
Thailand: Phansa Meesatham, Tananchai Boriban (Nirut Surasiang
52), Niweat Siriwong (Withaya Nabthong 82), Chukiat Noosalung,
Surachai Jirasirichote (Choketawee Promrat 60), Dusit Chalermsang
(Thanongsak Prajakkata 67), Tawan Sripan (Therdsak Chaiman 75),
Thawatchai Dumrong-ongtrakul, Anurak Srikerd, Kiatisak Senamuang (capt),
Sakesan Pituratana (Suthee Suksomkit 56)
Manchester United: Fabien Barthez (Raimond Van der Gouw 46), Denis
Irwin (Philip Neville 46), Ronny Johnsen, Wes Brown, Mikael
Silvestre, David Beckham (Luke Chadwick 46), Nicky Butt (Paul
Scholes 72), Juan Sebastian Veron (Roy Keane 46), Ryan Giggs (capt)
(Quinton Fortune 46), Andy Cole, Ruud van Nistelrooy (Dwight Yorke
30,000 turn up to watch training Posted July 29,
2001 by admin
Ferguson stunned by huge turnout
More than 30,000 fans flocked to Suphachalasai Stadium yesterday
to watch the superstars of English champions Manchester United
undergo a light training session in preparation for today's
friendly against Thailand.
The local Man United faithful started turning up at the ground
from noon and many waited six hours before the players arrived for
the scheduled 6 p.m. start.
For some of the fans-those unable to buy tickets for today's
match-it was the only chance to watch their heroes, notably
England captain David Beckham, in action in the flesh.
All the United players were there but the action, which lasted 90
minutes, was not too strenuous in the heat. Some of the players,
including new recruits Juan Sebastian Veron and Ruud van
Nistelrooy, trained with groups of schoolchildren.
In the morning the players had taken part in a more serious
workout at Rajamangala Stadium.
United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was staggered by the numbers who
turned out to watch his side train in the evening.
"It was amazing to see so many people there to watch us
train," he said. "This was really a very warm welcome
for the team. It was only training and I have never before seen so
many people at a stadium to watch a training session.
"This looked like a real match.
"For the game with Thailand, we will select our best players
and will play our best. We know that Thailand are a tough team to
beat but we will do our best."
Fans wearing the team colours, waving banners and screaming the
players' names pressed in around the squad's coach when they
arrived for the training session. Several people fainted and were
carried off by friends.
Thousands of fans from all over Thailand have converged on the
capital to watch the English champions this weekend.
Crowds of several hundred who could not get in to watch the
training session milled around outside the stadium, browsing for
contraband posters and jerseys at street stalls.
An elderly woman in a red United jersey said she had travelled
several hundred kilometres from Trang to see Beckham despite not
having a match ticket.
Meanwhile, Thai team manager Virat Charnpanich said: "Our
players have played many matches recently in the Thailand League,
as well as the S-League for those based in Singapore. This is a
problem for our team.
"Although we are the underdogs, I believe we will not lose by
more than three goals.
"Our team is much better than Malaysia and Singapore, plus we
have the Singapore-based players back. It will be a good game and
we will try to entertain the Thai fans."
All the Singapore-based players, except Choketawee Promrat,
returned to Bangkok yesterday. Choketawee will fly back this
United Schedule in Bangkok 27-29 July 2001
arrive Bangkok flight no. MH782
In at Radisson Hotel (RAMA IX Road)
Conference at Radisson Hotel
Dinner at Radisson Hotel
Session at Rajmangkala
at Radisson Hotel
Session at Stadium
Dinner from Sponsors at Orental Princess
VS Manchester United Match
at Radisson Hotel
UNITED FC. SQUADS
NATIONAL TEAM SQUADS
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