Jan 31, 2010
Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) deputy president Datuk Redzuan Sheikh Ahmad said they (Harimau Muda A) would be sent to Slovakia to compete in the country's local league.
"They will compete in the league from February to May and play 14 matches, plus a number of friendly matches from time to time," he told reporters after the FAM executive council meeting here today.
"After playing in the Slovakian league, the team would compete in the Obama Cup in the United States and undergo training in Indonesia during the month of July before competing in the Newspaper Cup in Vietnam (October)."
Redzuan said finance for the team that was being prepared for the 2011 SEA Games in Indonesia, would be borne by FAM, but added that FAM would try to absorb the team into the M-League, next season.
The fate of the team remained in a limbo following a decision by FAM on Dec 7, to bar Harimau Muda 'A' from playing in the Super League, so that they could play in the S-League.
FAM's plans however, fell flat when Singapore dropped a bombshell by not accepting the team to play in their S-League while any attempts to return to the M-League was dashed since the league had already started and the fact that affiliates were not keen the give the team a chance to play.
Meanwhile, FAM President Sultan Ahmad Shah took affiliates to task for preventing Harimau Muda A from playing in the M-league.
He said the move was a step backward, especially at a time when the whole country remains buoyant of the national team's victory at the Laos SEA Games, and they should have been committed towards improving and developing our young team.
"Unfortunately, the opposite happened and it led to FAM being criticized. We also had to look for other alternatives to accommodate the playing need of the team," said Sultan Ahmad after chairing a FAM executive council meeting at Wisma FAM, here on Sunday.
Sultan Ahmad Shah said the action of affiliates showed signs of selfishness and lack of foresight. BERNAMA
Jan 28, 2010
SO, tell us Mr Minister, what is the Everton deal going to cost the Sports Ministry, viz-a- viz the taxpayers?
Reliable sources say, it’s going to be a staggering 1.3 million pounds or the ringgit equivalent of RM7.15 million a year. Is that true Sir?
If it is, then let me tell you that it’s a marked-up fashioned to fill someone/ones’ coffers. I know what it costs as we had worked with Everton when I was in event and sports management.
Let me tell you Sir, that the whole development plan shouldn’t cost more than 700,000 pounds or RM3.8 million a year. If you don’t believe me, I can run it and manage it for you at this cost. Not that I want the job, but I want to show my convictions here, that I am not merely firing from all barrels from my hips.
Cheating the rakyat is already a mortal sin, but robbing them blind is cruel to the core.
By the way Mr Minister, I was told that you travelled by Air Asia on your own expense. But really Sir, I don’t see how relevant is that fact that was so eloquently explained by a prominent in my blog to the issue under the scope now.
Seriously, it doesn’t matter whether you travelled by Air Asia, MAS or even took the slow boat to the UK. It still doesn’t answer the question on how much is the Government spending on this project.
What is there to hide if there is nothing to hide?
As a taxpayer I deserve an answer. You politicians just can’t come beating our trail and knocking on our doors when you want our votes, and then when we voters demand transparency and answers, we get the cold shoulder.
Did you sit with Ray Hall who is the Academy Manager or did you meet Neil Dewship who is the Technical Manager for 9-19 years of age? Did they share with you their vision and mission of the academy in Malaysia?
You said many clubs have approached you, read here who they are. What now, all of s sudden, clubs are approaching you because we have 20 players who are in the same rank with Wayne Rooney and Cesc Fabregas. You mean everyone wants a Malaysian player.
Mr Minister, you have RM10 million to help develop Malaysian football, and I bet you believe you have all the answers. But let me give you an idea on how you can spend part of that money.
Have you heard of the Piala Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah that goes on for 8 months, they play football every Saturday and Sunday. Do you know something that league has no money now, all they are asking for is RM 700,000.
It has 200 players playing every week without fail. Did your so-called experts at NSC inform you about this league? Why don’t you adopt the tournament?
So many other programs are held all over the country, they are starving or dying for the lack of money and funding, and find it hard to continue. Just like the Ken Barnes grassroots programme that was developing players from ages 12-17. NSC was supporting it for a few years, but has stopped now. And this programme had links with the top EPL clubs, having sent some 15 players for attachments in clubs like Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal, Birmingham, and Wigan.
Really Mr Minister, you need to speak with the real experts, not those who masquerading as one. Let’s do the math here Sir, if you are going to use up about RM7 million on Everton from your RM10 million grant from the Government, that will leave you with 3 million.
Let me guess, the remaining RM3 million will be allocated to the expense account of the National Sports Council (NSC), whose so-called experts will use for travel to monitor our players. Honestly Sir, this whole thing smacks of a scam and a classic case for the Malaysian Anti Corruption Agency (MACC).
Sir, you can avoid the subject now, you can even pretend we don’t exist. But please don’t make the mistake of under-estimating the influence of blogosphere, please do not trivialise our impact on voters. Statistics will show that voters are turned in more to the web than to the mainstream media.
So be a good public servant, and give us the figures. That’s all I am asking.
Jan 22, 2010
"I will be getting the feedbacks soon," Ahmad Shabery told reporters in an interview over the "Sports on Traxx 101" radio programme at Angkasapuri here on Thursday.Ahmad Shabery said once a decision was made, the ministry would unfold a football development programme, for which a RM10 million allocation was announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak recently.
Meanwhile, FAM secretary-general Datuk Azzuddin Ahmad said he accompanied Ahmad Shabery in his visit to Everton Youth Academy and they discussed with Everton FC on the possibility of getting their assistance in the national football development programme."We have also made a request for our under-23 squad to train with the club," said Azzuddin when met at Wisma FAM, Kelana Jaya.
He said FAM would study the Youth and Sports Ministry's proposals but it would be pointless merely to attend training in England but not taking part in any competition."It is still not definite whether there will be an overseas training stint for the under-23 squad.
The footballers are also bound by contracts with state teams and clubs and this must be honoured as the Malaysian leagues had started."However, a monthly centralised training will continue as planned," he said, adding that, a committee comprising representatives from the National Sports Council, the Education Ministry and FAM would study various football development proposals which could be implemented.
On the Everton Youth Academy, he said it had a successful football development programme, starting at the tender age of eight."It has produced many top-notched players like Manchester United's Wayne Rooney," added Azzuddin.
Can anyone tell me why Everton? Is it because they spotted Wayne Rooney. ?
Jan 20, 2010
Currently, we have about 120 SAM members (should fill up 10 tables) and another five tables for invited guest and VIPS. The remaining 10 tables will be put on sale to cover the cost of expenses on a first come first serve basis.
Jan 13, 2010
For, in their haste to turn sport into his or her launching pad, politician sports ministers wittingly try to promote their political agendas, and unwittingly sentence the quality and future of sport to the gallows.
Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek, a rank outsider to sport, is today charting the course of Malaysian football on his stunted perception of the term “football management”.
That he is unqualified to handle this portfolio is easier to accept as poor Ahmad Shabery could be a man thrust into a position through no fault of his. But what is harder to accept is the fact that he seems to have placed his faith on those self-proclaimed sport experts whom he surrounds himself with, and who themselves can’t tell you whether they are coming or going.
For why else then would Mr ill-advised and ill-informed former Information Minister be planning a trip to London to meet FAM president Sultan Ahmad Shah to discuss plans for club attachment for our national players?
But as our Sports Minister and his self-proclaimed experts lounge in their Business Class passage to Europe in the name of “Lawatan Sambil Belajar”, Datuk Ahmad could mull over another option that though may not improve his political career immediately, but will certainly be good for the future of Malaysian football.
If parents are worried about their 12-year-olds growing up on foreign soil, well we have our embassies and consulates looking out for them, or even funding them.
Oh one other thing, are you Mr Minister going to make public the cost of your grand inane plan. If there is nothing to hide, if there is justification, why the secrecy. What has happened to transparency?
I wish Mr Minister and his entourage a pleasant and of course please don’t forget to take your cameras along as England could provide some really good “Kodak Moments” for you.
Jan 12, 2010
Jan 7, 2010
I am not an excellent writer compared to the many people out there, but given my limitations and time constraints I will however make every endeavour to address the biting issues. This morning I was on RTM breakfast show and we spoke about football and its progress. This is what I feel about the whole situation. Have a great year.
NSC Director General Datuk Zolkples Embong, being the obedient subordinate did a great job of by defending his boss’ decision of sending the national players to England for full time training. But the question is, does the NSC for all their claims, really know how to manage and cure Malaysian football of all its ailments?
Just what do they know about football management? Have these kataks ever stepped out from under their tempurung (coconut shell), and seen how football is managed in football-developed nations?
Their perception of astute football management is having an elite squad, waste RM 100 million on programmes, later shut down the department, and miraculously get away with murder and no accountability. The Malaysian Anti Corruption Agency that camped on the second floor of the NSC building quizzing certain officials could not provide any answers as well.
But even that aside, does anyone out there seriously believe that Zolkples can stand shoulder to shoulder with the nation’s football brains – FIFA and internationally- acclaimed at that too – like Datuk Seri Paul Mony Samuel, Datuk Peter Vellappan and Windsor Paul John?
When you are a dwarf, you should stand on the shoulders of giants so that you can have a better and clearer vision of what lies ahead. But to do that one has to first acknowledge one’s shortcomings. I seriously doubt Zolkples believes he is a dwarf in this field, for if he did I am quite sure he would have done the most sensible thing by seeking the assistance of these three world-acclaimed football administrators to fix our football problems.
For no one in their right frame of mind or knows anything of football would ever support such an inane move. I can even begin to understand why the Sports Minister would have conceived such an idea. He is after all a politician, and one who could be on transit in sports. But what excuse has a self-proclaimed expert on sports like Zolkples have to support a move that would only be more detrimental than instrumental in the rescue operations.
But really Mr Minister, you should have looked beyond the NSC to seek advice on this issue before coming up with a suggestion like that. I am just amazed why our very own football brains weren’t even consulted by us when the rest of Asia turns to them for help. Do they have to be Caucasians for us Malaysians to acknowledge their skills and knowledge?
Perhaps we should all just take a page out of Michael Jackson’s cosmetic book and have our skins bleached, for it seems, at least in this country, that it matters that we are black or white.
Maybe if the so-called experts in NSC had advised the Minister well, he would have sat with Europe failures like Fadzli Shaari who was in Germany playing division 4 with pot-bellied social footballers, Akmal Rizal who came running back, Juzaili Samion, and also Titus who decided to stay back.
Maybe the Minister and Zol should talk to former international call Lim Teong Kim, who is back for holidays from Germany, as the coach of the Under-19 Bayern Munich team, and get some input on life and standards in Europe.
Reality Check: There isn’t a single Malaysian who can get a playing contract in those football-developed nations even in the 2nd division. Let’s face it; we are still playing kampung football, and right now that’s all we are worth. The solutions are staring us in the faces, but we still persist on wasting taxpayers’ money and enriching the coffers of certain individuals.
I am also surprised that FAM hasn’t tapped into the huge reserves of Datuk Paul, Windsor, Datuk Peter Vellappan. What is it that’s standing in their way – ego?
Mr Minister, perhaps before you pay a visit to Old Trafford to seek assistance, you could do well by gaining some input from the football brains that are at our very own backyard.
For it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to tell you that Man United has no time for our boys, Brian Claire the Head of Youth will not give our players a chance to play even in the reserves. Did you ask the boys who are married to actresses and having a child, if they want to go. How much can you pay them? Our players can’t even play in the Vietnam League or Thailand League. Do you know why?
We are just not a competitive race. We are happy with being mediocre and get paid handsomely for it. When a mediocre player is earning up to RM 25,000 a month and lives comfortably without having to word hard, train in cold winters, and fight for places in the starting line-up week in week out, why in God’s name should they go and get killed in England.
Are our players, who have been so used to getting handouts and subsidies and not having to compete on level-playing fields most of the time, ready to compete in England? Please Mr Minister, who are you kidding? Please don’t insult Manchester United by even suggesting to them to train our very mediocre players, who thrive on mediocrity, laziness, roti canai and nasi lemak. I am very sure someone is making money as well here; no one is going to do this for free. So can the Minister tell us who is arranging this trip and what is it going to cost the tax payers?
Mind you the SEA Games gold medal was won after FAM spent RM 650 million in 15 years. That’s how much football cost, so let’s not celebrate as though we qualified for the World Cup. Yesterday Malaysia was beaten 1-0 by UAE in the Asian Cup. So there goes our campaign in the Asian Cup.
So what now Mr Minister?
The home side dominated the entire contest but failed to convert any of their chances until former AFC Young Player of the Year Khalil curled home from the edge of the area. Malaysia had to win their final game to keep their slender hopes of joining Uzbekistan in qualifying from the three team Group C alive, but the UAE's second win leaves Malaysia without a point from their four games.
Even though they knew a point would be enough to qualify for the finals ahead of their final game against Uzbekistan on March 3, the UAE began strongly and the home side came close to an opener after just seven minutes as Ismaeil Matar was denied by Malaysia goalkeeper Mohd Farizal.
But the UAE failed to maintain their strong start and Malaysia fought back into the contest although the visitors failed to threaten UAE goalkeeper Majed Naser.The home side regained control of the match as the first half progressed and again came close to opening the scoring after 22 minutes but Farizal turned away Matar's free-kick.
The UAE's dominance continued after the break but they still lacked the final touch in front of goal as Farizal again came to Malaysia's rescue four minutes after the hour mark as the visiting goalkeeper turned away Hamdan Al Kamali's free-kick. Mahmoud Khamis was the next to go close for the home side as he fired wide before Fares Juma fired over the crossbar with 10 minutes remaining. Malaysia nearly kept their slim hopes of qualifying alive in the last minute but a free-kick from captain Mohamad Aidil was straight at UAE goalkeeper Naser.And with time running out Abdulsalam Jumaa found Khalil and the substitute curled a sublime strike past Farizal from the edge of the area.
The legendary former international, national coach and team manager, said if the decision to send the national Under-23 players for training overseas, it cannot be for just a short period but must be at least for a whole season.
"Programmes like this must go on for at least a season not just a short stint like what was done before," he told Bernama when contacted here Wednesday.He cited the decision to place some players at renown clubs in the world, for short stints.Among players who had short stints were Mohd Akmal Rizal Ahmad Rakhli, Juzaili Samion (Strasbourg FC, France), Mohd Rudie Ramli, Mohd Fadzli Saari (SV Wehen, Germany), Baddrol Bakhtiar, Mohd Bunyamin Omar (Chelsea, England) and Mohd Asrarudin Putra Omar (PSV Eindhoven, Holland)."
Apart from training, players need competitive matches regularly to experiment what they have learned in training. They must play competitive matches at least once a week. If just training, they can even do it here," he said.
Ghani Minhat feels his views were valid since players would be able to play at least two competitive matches a week when they represent their respective teams in the M-League.The man, known as 'Raja Bola' for his exploits as a player during his heydays in the 1960s, also expressed concern over the kind of support and cooperation from players where they would be attached."Each club or country will have their own style and training routine.
So, to place them with different clubs may be similar to playing for different clubs in the M-League," he said.Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Ahmad Shabery Cheek had recently proposed to retain the national Under-23 team that won the gold medal in the Laos SEA Games after 20 years, instead of going back to their respective state or club teams to play in the M-League.The proposal was initially shot down by FAM because the players had already signed up to play for their respective teams, but later agreed to the ministry's proposal, and find ways to see the proposal becoming a reality.-- BERNAMA