Apr 07, 2011|
An AFC delegation – officially termed a ‘Special Mission Team’ – recently completed a tour of all the TPL clubs and departed the Kingdom with a clear message for the FAT and TPL: “you’ve improved, but you’ve still got a lot to do”. The SMT was here to assess whether Thai clubs meet the required standards to host AFC Champions League games: generally speaking, they don’t. Just four clubs currently have stadia that are good enough according to the AFC: Yamaha Stadium (Muangthong United), the Leo Stadium (Bangkok Glass), the Thammasat Stadium (Police United) and the Chonburi Stadium (Chonburi F.C). The three biggest areas of concern to the delegation were stadia (the lack of proper seating at many grounds is a big issue), lack of media facilities and sub-standard youth development. If these problems aren’t at least addressed, by October 14th then Thai clubs will not be permitted to take part in the Champions League until at least 2015. That would be a huge dent to the domestic games currently meteoric rise.