Hot Trend:coronavirusFIFA World Cup

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

The future looks bright for Thailand, after the emergence of their U23 team in the AFC U23 Championship. Now back at Thai League 1, we take a look at the ones to watch at this season.

Wattanakorn Sawatlakhorn, Muangthong United
Defender, 21

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

Comfortable everywhere across the left-flank, Wattanakorn is blessed with speed, flair, and a fearless mentality. He is not the best at reading situations thus can be beaten easily by tricky wingers but also have the pace to recover back quickly. The 21-year-old can be slightly reckless at times, which could put the team and himself under pressure, but the same could have also be said about the young Theerathon Bunmathan. Wattanakorn will only trim this out of his game through experience i.e. by playing. 

With Daisuke Sato's poor injury record and the Kirin lack of established left-back, expect Wattanakorn to get plenty of game time. The key is to be consistent (a challenge for every youngster) and avoid major injury. If Wattanakorn can keep this up, 2020 could be a massive year for him

Nattawut Suksum, Bangkok United
Striker, 22

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

Nattawut Suksum marked his return from Japan with a beautiful goal in Bangkok United’s season opener against Prachuap. Don’t expect the 22-year-old to be doing stepovers or rainbow flicks. Instead, focus on his work off the ball as he timed his runs to attack the space behind the opposition defense.

Nattawut just missed out from the AFC U23 Championship squad in January - he is still an unpolished talent but certainly one to keep an eye on. 

Kanokpon Buspakom, Police Tero
Midfielder, 20

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

Kanokpon Buspakom, son of legendary head coach Attaphol, played an important role in Police Tero FC's return to the top tier of Thai football. At the time of writing, he has featured in four full 90-minute games in Thai League 1, including a win over Buriram United on opening day. The diligent midfielder is an industrious worker but also balances that aspect of his game with good technical ability.

Jirawat Thongsaengphrao, Suphanburi
Defender, 21

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

In Jirawat, Adebayo Gbadebo has a tough-tackling left-back who can cross, is a set-piece specialist and useful in the air thanks to his height and leap. Acceleration is Jirawat’s biggest weakness which can make him vulnerable when he gets run at by pacey wingers. Still, this is a coachable area of his game and the 21-year-old should be safe in Adebayo Gbadebo’s deep defending tactic. 

Jiraaut Wingwon, Samut Prakan City
Striker, 19

Five young players to keep an eye on at the 2020 Thai League 1

The 19-year-old was playing 4th tier football with Bankunmae FC before he was discovered by Samut Prakan City who snatched him up for the 2020 Thai League 1. Quick and never afraid to run at defenders, Jiraaut does not look out of place at all playing alongside teammates who essentially have been together for a couple of years. To describe Jiraaut’s style of play, we can say he is somewhat of a mix between fellow Sea Fang attackers Picha Autra and Jaroensak Wonggorn - not a bad combination at all.