Singapore vs Thailand: Key Battles

Ahead of Wednesday evening's all-important home leg, Singapore takes a closer look at the key areas where the match could be won or lost for the Lions.
By Kenneth Tan

The mention of the name 'Teerasil Dangda' will definitely strike fear into any Singapore defender right now.

Not the biggest or tallest of frontmen, the 24-year-old more than makes up for it with his perfect timing and his wide array of finishing skills, with his spectacular header against Malaysia in the semi-final first leg winning's Goal of the week.

Buoyed by successfully keeping out the Philippines duo of Phil Younghusband and Angel Guirado, Baihakki will have to step his game up to yet another level to stop the one-time Manchester City player.


Stopping Teerasil might be important, but one should not discount the efforts or quality of the supporting cast.

Jakkapan has been an unsung hero so far for the War Elephants, with his excellent stamina and energy down the flanks creating acres of space for his fellow attackers.

As shown against Laos and Philippines, the form and fitness of Shaiful is a huge factor in whether the Lions can perform.

Strong in the tackle, competent in getting forward and capable of whipping in dangerous crosses - the contest between Shaiful and Jakkapan should be an interesting one.


A veteran nearing a century of caps at the age of 28, Thailand's master playmaker has always considered his international career a 'failure' without an AFF Cup medal.

As proved over the years, the dimunitive Datsakorn always seems to step up his game against the Lions, be it his on-the-ball wizardry or off-the-ball antics.

On the other hand, Isa has impressed since occupying the midfield hardman slot vacanted by Hariss Harun.

However, roughing it out and impressing against Jerry Lucena and Jason De Jong in the semi-finals is one thing; keeping concentration and temper in check against Datsakorn is another.

Datsakorn has already claimed a 'victim' in Fadhli Shas in the semi-finals and the LionsXII man may just be the next one if he is not careful.

This should be a blockbuster of a contest.


Other than captain Shahril Ishak's goalscoring exploits, this campaign has been about Khairul Amri's renaissance.

Hitting a superb free-kick against Laos in the final group game, striking another opportunistic goal against Philippines in the semi-final second leg, and not to forget that 2007 goal against Thailand - the 27-year-old has a reputation of being the trump card for the Lions.

The surviving members from five years ago will certainly remember that strike, and whether he can perform will hugely depend on Thailand left back Theerathon.

With only a handful of caps and this marking only his second AFF Cup campaign, the 22-year-old's assured performances on the pitch so far has belied his tender years.

Neat at the back and dangerous when pushing forward to support Anucha Kitpongsri with his accurate delivery from crosses - Theerathon could be the secret weapon to Thailand's success.