Chiangrai break record and bank to sign Tanaboon

Chiangrai United broke the Thai Premier League’s transfer fee record by signing Muangthong United defensive midfielder Tanaboon Kesarat. 

The transfer fee was undisclosed but is believed to between 40 to 50 million baht (approximately US$1.1 million to US$1.4million).

The previous record stood at 30 million baht (US$857,000), when Theerathon Bunmathan moved from Buriram to Muangthong earlier this year.

Big-spending Chiangrai also signed another six players after announcing Tanaboon’s arrival.

Siwakorn Tiatrakul, Suriya Singmui, Chatchai Butrprom, Phitiwat Sookjitthammakul, Pathompon Charoenrattanaphirom and Chinnapatr Lee-Oh all signed for the club on the same day.

If any thought they would curb their spending after all this, Chiangrai seem set to prove them wrong as 300 million baht is being mooted for their stadium’s renovation, production of merchandise and other expenses.

The move shocked many as Muangthong were a powerhouse in the top flight while Chiangrai only managed to finish in a dismal eighth before the season was halted due to the passing of Thailand’s King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

However, Tanaboon insisted he was at Chiangrai to challenge for silverware and take the club to the top.

Chiangrai also signed six others

“I’m here (Chiangrai - United) because of the agreement of both clubs. They both discussed this to me and it’s a suitable deal for everyone,” Tanaboon told reporters at his unveiling.
“Chiangrai United aim to be a giant and participate in the ACL next season, we want to be a champion.

“For my personal achievement, I always want to improve myself. I’m not stopping here and I want to prove myself at the continental stage, which means I have the same target as Chiangrai does.”
Tanaboon went to add that he would play wherever his club saw fit, although he would prefer to play in midfield

“As everyone knows, I can play defensive midfield or as center-back. I wouldn't refuse to play in any position as long as I’m on the pitch.

“My best position is as a defensive midfielder; I’m not a natural centre-back but whenever I go on the pitch I always want to do my best”

Chiangrai president Mitti Tiyapairach explained that they paid big money for the defensive player as he was a part of the club’s “long-term vision and plan”.

“He’s a future player and will be Chiangrai United key man for years,” Mitti said.

“Apart from his abilities, he will be able to bring out the best qualities of his teammates as well. He knows how to control the game and everything.
“If you’ve asked me is there any players in Thailand worth investing inasmuch as Tanaboon, I would say it was difficult to tell.

“But this doesn’t mean we will buy players without building players from our own academy in the future.”