Probably the most exciting acquisition of the close-season, the two-time TPL Golden Boot winner has seen those boots turn to plimsolls since his arrival at MTU. Most fans have, like myself, hoped that the occasional goal - such as his strike against Hanoi T&T - would spark a run of goals but it simply hasn’t happened yet.
|Ahnon hasn't found his feet yet|
In any case, someone with Ahnon’s record doesn’t lose his class overnight and we’ll continue to get behind him. Perhaps his ironic selection in the national side will give him the boost he needs.
Verdict: A miss, but definitely capable of turning it around.
The little guy from Police United looks like a winger, plays like a winger and calls himself a winger...... so it was surprising and frustrating to see him played in central midfield on so many occasions after his move to MTU. When played in his natural position, he troubles defenders and puts in telling crosses, such as the set-up for Issofaou’s first goal in last week’s cup game. I hope he’ll get more chance to play his own style in future.
Verdict: A hit when allowed to play his own style, a miss when not. (Yes I’m copping-out!)
|MTU's air-traffic controller|
As if adjusting to a very different style of football wasn’t enough of a challenge, Zesh was publicly introduced by the club as the “record salary player” (no pressure there, then) and like his teammates, was thrown into a bizarre and confused system of play by coach Carlos. The ensuing time away from the first team was probably a blessing in disguise and it’s not by chance that Zesh’s return coincided with a run of clean sheets and very low rates of goals against the champions. He’s now well-established in a rotational system of centre backs along with Panupong and Nattaporn.
Verdict: A hit.
|Should I stay or should I go now?|
Verdict: A miss, that might just have turned into a hit.
The white boy from TOT was never going to be the signing to sell season tickets, but after seeing his early chances limited, Miroslav has proven himself consistent and able. The eastern-European may not be the fastest or most prolific scorer, but he has a good first touch, a good reading of the game and can play as a supporting striker while banging in a few classics of his own like this one. A very good squad player, why would we want to lose him to Bangkok United for the sake of Kris Bright?
Bangkok United’s player of the year was designed to replace Kawin, but the number 26‘s broken hand and subsequent recovery have prolonged his stay with MTU and limited Weera’s chances to date. He's dropped no clangers but I did notice he seemed to prefer punches and parries in last week’s cup game. I hope that was just down to the very watery conditions.
Verdict: Way too early to say.
Diarra Ali: A return from Phuket FC. Like everyone else involved, he suffered from the Community Shield debacle and disappeared from first team view. Played last week and looked more composed. Not enough exposure to reach a verdict
Phaitoon Thiamba: A Thai signed from an Indonesian team, I think. Plays right back but it’s hard to see what he has to offer over Arthit or even Pakasit. Could be of value as a reserve player if the economics are right.
Santi Chaiyaphuk: As above, except he’s a left-sided player from Pattaya United.
Khapfa Boonmantoon: A highly-rated player from Osotspa who hasn’t really settled in, though I felt his performances have been good. Now transfer listed by the club.