This Sunday will see the first domestic competition come to an end with the countries best Phnom Penh Crown facing of against Nagaworld. It promises to be an epic encounter played in front of a packed stadium.
The Route To The Final…
Drawn in the same group these two heavyweights have met once already with Crown coming out 2-1 winners in Kampong Speu. It was arguably Crowns hardest game of the group stages and they will be under no illusion come Sunday with the task ahead.
Crown won 6 out of 6 in the groups and dispatched Kirivong with ease over two legs. They’re the team to beat and the one everyone is chasing. Many are calling this the greatest era since swiss coach, Schweingruber, was in charge many years ago. They’ll need one more league title to match his achievements. Back then Naga were the main threat and they look like they could be again this season.
Naga came through second in the group with a loss to Crown and draw against Svay Rieng enough to put them through. Four wins in the other four games including a 7-0 hammering of Tiger in the last group game. The Brazilian forwards Marcio and Christian backed up by Japanese midfielder Yuta give them a solid base to work from.
The Coaches… .
Oleg is fast becoming one of the most successful coaches to grace our country. The biggest question surrounding him is whether he can be kept our will his ambition outgrow Cambodia?
Kim Borey is a legend in his own right as a player for both of these clubs and was an instrumental part of Schweingruber team back in the day. Many have questioned his appointment as coach given her doesn’t have the experience at this level but with the technical director above him wanting more control it’s easy to see why he was appointed. Take nothing away from him, half the battle as a coach is getting players to believe in you, he has that already with his former teammates ready to run through brick walls for him.
Chanpolin VS Yuta – Polin pulls the strings for Crown and is dangerous from all over the field. He can score, create and go box to box which makes him one of the best in the country. Yuta is born tenacious and high energy for 90 minutes. He never stops.
Takaki VS Christian – Christian has been one of the outstanding players of this seasons competition and on his day unplayable. He scores every type of goal and always finds himself in space. Takaki is as sure-footed as a mountain goat though and will have been studying his opponents strengths all week. He’ll know when to do battle and when to give space.
Neito VS Bunnath – Neito is a class act and going from strength to strength. He can control games by himself. His biggest asset is his movement. When he drops deep will Bunnath go with him exposing space behind him or will he stay and allow Neito time to turn and play facing goal?
Prediction… .PPC 3-2 NAGAWORLD (AET)
I think we’re in for a tight first half with Crown going on 1 up. Then the second half will open up and when Naga score it will be end to end to stuff. I say it’ll be 2-2 after the 90 with Pisoth or Neito grabbing the winner in extra time. If it goes to penalties I’ll still have Crown to handle the pressure.
This article is adapted from BPVE, (https://bpve.com/) reported and edited from the great team – Cambodia Sports Review. (https://www.cambodiasportsreview.com/)
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