SEOUL (Reuters) - Thailand’s women’s soccer team have been surprisingly rewarded with a bonus by the country’s controversial FA head for only losing 5-0 to hosts South Korea in their opening match of the Asian Games.
“It’s disappointing that we gave away goals so easily in the first half,” Worawi Makudi was quoted as saying by the Nation newspaper on Tuesday after Sunday’s lopsided Group A defeat.
“We fared better in the second half. The association had planned to give the team 200,000 Thai Baht ($6,200) if they won the match, but, for the players’ efforts, we decided to hand them 100,000 as consolation.”
The Koreans were 2-0 up at halftime before adding further goals in the second period to leave Thai coach Nuengruethai Sathongwien, who had offered a 1 million baht reward to anyone who could score against the Koreans, disappointed.
“We weren’t totally satisfied with the outcome as we shouldn’t have let in so many goals,” the paper quoted her as saying.
FIFA executive committee member Worawi had already rewarded the team with bonuses of 15 million baht after they finished fifth at the Asian Cup in May to qualify for a first women’s World Cup next year.
The 62-year-old, who has long held control of soccer in the Southeast Asian country despite allegations of corruption, will be confident his side will get back to winning ways on Wednesday when they take on Maldives, who were thrashed 15-0 by India in the other Group A match on Sunday.
Writing by Patrick Johnston in Singapore; editing by Sudipto Ganguly