Thai clubs to meet with Football Association of Thailand to review decision to halt 2016 season

The FAT heard complaints from Thai Premier League clubs over decision to scrap 2016 season.

Thai Premier League
Thai league was halted with three more matches to be played in 2016 season Reuters

Thai Premier League clubs will meet with the Football Association of Thailand (FAT) on Monday to review scrapping of the 2016 league season after the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

As the Southeast Asian nation entered a one-year mourning period for their revered King, who breathed his last aged 88 on Thursday, entertainment activities in the country were asked to be toned down. The FAT had thus announced it was halting the 2016 league season with three more matches to be played.

The league title went to Muangthong United who just had a five-point lead over fierce rivals Bangkok United at the top of the table as it was announced that the rankings as on 14 October 14 will be used to determine the champions and the relegated clubs.

While Muangthong were benefited from the announcement, strugglers Army United and Chainat Hornbill, both on 30 points, faced the brunt of FAT's decision as they were in danger of relegation to League One.

However, the two clubs complained to the FAT saying the governing body's decision has resulted in "unfair relegation with three matches and nine points to play for", according to Siam Sport, as quoted by the Straits Times. Notably, five other teams - Nakhon Ratchasima (35), Pattaya United (34), Sisaket (33), Navy (31) and Super Power Samut Prakan (31) - were mathematically in danger of being relegated.

The Thai government spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd reportedly said on Saturday that the football matches could go on during the mourning period following which the FAT has decided to review its decision.

"The FAT invites football clubs' chairmen, representatives and sponsors to hear the explanation over the decision on 17 October," the FAT said in a statement, as quoted by the report.

Notably, the 2018 Fifa World Cup Asian qualifying Group B clash between Thailand and Australia, which was scheduled to be held in Bangkok on 15 November is likely to be moved to Singapore.

However, Thailand's will go ahead in participate in the 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup in Philippines from 19 November. The War Elephants take on the co-hosts in the tournament opener and are drawn in Group A along with Singapore and Indonesia.