On July 31, the Japanese Ambassador to Thailand, Kazuya Nashida, presented Masatada Ishii, the head coach of Thailand's professional football team Buriram United FC, with a testimonial in recognition of his contribution to mutual understanding and friendship between Japan and Thailand through sports. The award ceremony, held at the Ambassador's residence, was attended by people who support Japan-Thailand football interactions in Thailand.
Mr. Ishii led Buriram United FC to victory in the Thai League, Thai FA Cup, and Thai League Cup titles in 2022 and 2023, making him the first coach in Thai League history to win the triple crown in two consecutive years. Additionally, Mr. Ishii holds the distinction of being the first person in the J.League to win league championships for Kashima Antlers, both as a player and as a manager.
Football is one of the most popular sports in Thailand, with Japanese J.League matches also being broadcasted in the country and a large number of Thai fans following. There is an active exchange through football, with players transferring in both directions between the J.League and the Thai league, and Japanese coaches leading Thai teams.
We would like to extend our congratulations to Mr. Ishii for his milestone achievement, which will further develop football interactions between Japan and Thailand, and we hope for even greater exchanges between the two countries through football in the future.