Thursday, August 22, 2013 - 15:28
GERMANY-based former international midfielder Lim Teong Kim has been appointed the project director of the National Football Development Programme (NFDP).
Lim, who turned 50 in April, said he will assume the post in November after discussing his appointment with his wife Michaela Mock in Germany.
Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin announced the appointment yesterday evening at Putrajaya.
The former Bayern Munich youth coach, first met Khairy Jamaluddin before the Hari Raya holidays to discuss the possibility of hism assisting in the NFDP, had another meeting with the minister on Tuesday to finalise his appointment.
Khairy is the chairman of the national football development committee, which involves the Youth and Sports Ministry, the NSC, the FA of Malaysia (FAM) and the Ministry of Education. The eight-year NFDP was initiated last year with the target of seeing Malaysia qualify for the FIFA Under-17 World Cup in 2019.
Teong Kim has been offered a three years plus the option of a two-year extension contract. He will sign the contract when he returns from Germany.
Lim returns to Munich on Saturday and will return after he has settled a few matters pertaining to his move to Malaysia.
He will be taking over from his older brother Lim Kim Choon, who held the technical director's post until June and did not renew his contract. Kim Choon has join the Fifa development programme as its technical director at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) building in Bukit Jalil.
Khairy said that Teong Kim's designation as project director means that he will have bigger responsibilities.
“Yes, everything has been firmed up and all that needs to be sorted out is my discussion with my wife. Her mother passed away recently and I need to be there for her and to ensure that everything is settled before I return to Malaysia,” said Lim, who played for the Bundesliga side Herta Berlin in 1987 besides Malacca, Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Negri Sembilan and Kedah in the M-League.
“My family will still be based in Germany and only I will come to take up the appointment.
I have discussed this with the Sports Minister and he understands my predicament.
He has given me his blessing to return to Germany to be with my family from time to time.”
Lim has a son aged 20 and two daughters aged 18 and 17.
The Malacca boy said he is excited about his new post and charting Malaysia’s football future. However, he warned against any expectation of instant results.
“Football development is a long process and results cannot be achieved overnight.
I intend to put in place the European and latest methods of football development and ensure that they work,” said Lim, who coached the Bayern Munich junior team from 2001 to 2012 and worked with coaches like Owen Hargreaves, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Thomas Muller and David Alaba.
He holds both a Malaysia Football Association (FAM) Advanced Coaching Certificate and a German Football Association (DFB) Master Coaching Licence.
“It is going to be a challenging job, but I thrive on challenges. It is going to be a tough process, but once everything is in place, Malaysia should see a steady stream of young and well-trained footballers coming through,” said Lim, who was capped 75 times.
He added that as his brother Kim Choon has already laid the foundationsfor the NFDP, but his work will be in-depth and involve some restructuring. He will first ensure there is better infrastructure, especially playing fields, are in place.
“We are talking about the 14 centres in the country besides the Malaysian Football Academy in Gambang, Kuantan, where I intend to ensure better playing fields, training facilities and sports science-related equipment for training, recovery and rehabilitation are available.
“However, I will have to do all this gradually as it will involve a great deal of work. Then I would need qualified and professional manpower for the entire programme.”
Asked how much the programme will cost, Lim said a price cannot be put on development, as it is an ongoing process.
“I understand that the government has made available RM10 million per year for development. We will have to start with this, but it is not going to be enough as we will have to pay for manpower and the facilities.”
Asked if he can make a bigger impact than when he was the director of coaching for soccer academies for 18 months with the FA of Malaysia in the 1990s, his reply was simple: “I am older, have 12 years of European and top club-level coaching experience and am definitely wiser.