Saturday, March 30, 2013

FAM should haul up the real trouble makers!

Kudos to the FA of Malaysia secretary-general Datuk Azzuddin Ahmad for having come out in the open to reveal that there is a possible conspiracy to remove the national coach, Datuk K. Rajagobal.

And the same goes to The Star for their two days in a row to carry front page the story on Rajagobal, when the General Election is the talk of the nation. It was a freshening change and also underlined that sports in the country holds priority too.

This is what The Star wrote:

So the question now is who rules the FA of Malaysia?
All the talk about to remove the Sultan of Pahang as the President of FA of Malaysia to check the ills of Malaysian soccer is utter rubbish. It is people who do not understand the workings of the FA of Malaysia and do not see things happenings as it is, who make stands like these.

For starters, FA of Malaysia needs a leader who commands the respect from all quarters, who is influential to bring in the funds to the national association and the passion for the game.

The president is just one man in the Council and decisions are not taken by him alone. What are the rest of the Exco members and State affiliates doing. If they are yes man then,who is to be blamed. It is these yes man who should be removed. And these are the same people who run the State football. What have they done for their State football. If the grassroots is weak, so will be the foundation of FA of Malaysia.

Just to sidetrack, stories I have heard of how foreign players have been hired for this season (no different from previous years) is horrific. No surprise that many of these foreign players have failed to perform and many have had their contracted terminated. Stories of players hired by just watching video clippings, players hired because agents have packages for coaches and officials or known to the coaches and the market being flooded with second-rated and even third-rated foreign players is all so familiar.

Coming back to critics asking for change of guards at FA of Malaysia, from my days as a sport journalist and having had many meetings with the Sultan of Pahang and also the Tengku Mahkota of Pahang, both have given time and opportunities to air my views and even explain myself when at times I have taken FA of Malaysia to task for several issues. Each time both listen attentively and respect the views and have at times changed their stance. It was the same for many other sports journalists, who have on many occasion been critical of FA of Malaysia's decisions or issues they have handled. It only goes to say that they listen and do not make decisions on their own.

Thus it is up to the officials in FA of Malaysia to put forward their views in the best interest of the game and not based on their personal agendas.

If these so-called critics want changes in Malaysian soccer, start campaigning for the right people to be placed at the State FAs and remove all those who have agendas and benefit themselves alone.

What Azzuddin has said in the newspapers today is nothing new. It is just that no one wanted to bring it up to the surface because most of them were part and parcel of group who were actually the people who were taking Malaysian soccer further down the dirt road and had their agendas in place.

Hopefully, the current situation will be addressed and Malaysian soccer is put back on the right road to further improvement.

But if the hidden powers are more powerful and have their way and the agenda to get rid of Rajagobal succeeds, then I can already see what will happen next.

They will clamour for either Ong Kim Swee to take charge of both teams, or bring in a foreign coach. What better time to get rid of Rajagobal then now, with the next Asian qualifier match four months time.

If a foreign coach is actually hired (I am sure they already have a few names in mind and do not surprised if you hear some familiar names), he is going to bring back a few seasoned players to the squad for short term success and throw all the long term planning down the drain.

Yes, coaches get hired and sacked and that is the name of the game. But based on Rajagobal's performance chart since he took charge of Under-23 in 2009 in collaboration  with the Ministry of Sport/National Sports Council on a long term programme culminating with the national team qualifying for the Asian Cup next year, has he not brought improvement so far. I remember not too long ago, everyone was singing praises about him. Even now he commands respect from the public and is treated like a national hero! He has a contract until the end of the year, why not allow him to complete his contract.

What good will changes at the tail end of his contract bring to the national team other than further disrupt the progression chart.

Above all, critics must understand and come to terms that Malaysian soccer is still far away from being top ranked even in Asean region, let alone Asia. And to attain the top status will not come overnight and with constant changes. If the critics continue to live in their own world of dreamland, it is not going to help one bit. And if the learned soccer officials who are suppose to play a key role in charting the improvement of Malaysian soccer, have their own agendas, then Malaysian soccer is doing to be drawn into further doldrums.

We have to have one vision, a concerted and united effort of all, patience, dedication, discipline and above all the passion for the game and not material gains and self interest to get anyway close to the path of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

1 comment:

Jamalul Azizi Abdul Rahaman said...

Congrats to Datuk Azzudin for speaking up. FAM needs a major overhaul be receptive to criticisms. Datuk Rajagopal is innocent for saying what he did.