It will be the Prem for us again next year after beating Nottingham Forest 1-0 and making it a run of 16 wins out of 18 games. It’s a long way from Elm Park watching Barrow, Workington and Halifax …
I have been reading Alec Waugh’s Bangkok: The Story of a City – he was the brother of Evelyn and also capable of a pleasing phrase now and again. He wrote about the Wild Tigers, which was the ‘army within the army’ established by King Rama VI on his coronation.
The role of the Wild Tigers in dominating the king’s affections is well known, since this was influential in prompting the 1912 Palace Coup – one of the many by the elite who were disgusted by the thought of common people having any form of power in Siam. However, I was unaware of the Wild Tigers as a football team. Waugh observes that (on p.98) the King organized a football league, presumably the first in Siam (the first in the Mekong region?) because he was, of course, a strong Anglophile. However, the legitimacy of this league was undermined by the King’s desire to see the Wild Tigers win all their games.
How many teams can have been involved in this? I cannot remember having seen a history of football in Thailand, although perhaps one exists in Thai language and I have just not come across it yet. The modern history of Thai football has its various episodes of skullduggery which are themselves worthy of retelling.
Football (some call it soccer) is the biggest and most important sport in the world by a considerable margin. It is run by an international organization known by the acronym FIFA and has a membership (famously and possibly apocryphally) of more countries than any other international organization ever. FIFA is responsible for monitoring and changing the laws of the game, overseeing the national football associations (FAs), developing the game, determining the location of the World Cup and so forth.
Read the full article here.
The World Cup starts tonight and, in Thailand, that means one thing above all – new attempts by busybodies to poke their noses into young people’s business on the pretext that they might be participating in illegal gambling. A ‘network of advocacy groups’ is telling parents to snoop on their children’s internet and telephone trail and is trying to establish snitches in schools to inform authorities of those students suspected of being involved (because, as we well know, snitches never abuse their position for score-settling).
Actually, world cup means a few other things: workers being obliged to wear the strip of different countries while serving the public, total confusion over whether the games will be broadcast on terrestrial or cable stations and whether there will be English language commentary and the inevitable prisoner tournament.
Meanwhile, PM* Abhisit Vejjajiva has revealed that his favourite team in Argentina –the Argentine junta’s most well-known policies involved murdering and disappearing political protestors and dissidents. So, obviously no connection there, then.