Published: Thursday May 22, 2014 MYT 6:28:00 PM
Updated: Thursday May 22, 2014 MYT 7:31:05 PM

'States need to play big role in supplying footballers'

PETALING JAYA: Blame it on the system!

The failure of Malaysian football to rise is not because of an individual ... it is the responsibility of all, said former FA of Malaysia (FAM) deputy president Datuk Seri Raja Ahmad Zainuddin Raja Omar.

The former long-serving Perak team manager (12 years) said it was not fair to blame FAM president Sultan Ahmad Shah for the rot in the game. He said the failure of the national team to progress was due to a lack of quality players.

“If the states do not co-operate and play a significant role in assisting in the development of the game at the grassroots and in districts, we will continue to lag the developed nations. We can have the best coaches but our football will remain stagnant ... as long as we don’t have the material,” said Raja Ahmad at the launch of his book Bola Sepak Pro & Kontra at the PJ Hilton on Thursday.

The 404-page book, which is in Bahasa Malaysia and will also be in English soon, consists of his personal experiences, articles and comments with a national daily.

“This book contains my experiences in Malaysian football. I have put in 10 years of effort in compiling this book. How I started with a club to state and to FAM. I have touched on the pros and cons of our game ... why we failed to qualify to the World Cup and why we don’t have the hunger for success.

“I have also put down my experiences as one of the longest serving football managers in the country with Perak for 12 years ... the success story, the ups and downs and many more. Of course, there is also my three-year ban when I criticised FAM in 1991,” he said.

Asked about the three-way contest for the FAM presidency, Raja Ahmad said Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah was the right candidate to take over from his father.

“He has the experience and is a well-recognised personality in FIFA and AFC. The Tengku Mahkota Pahang is the right choice. Anyone holding the FAM top post should not be wearing two hats though,” he said.

The presidency elections will be held during the FAM congress on Sunday.

Tags / Keywords: football, book launch, FAM, Football Association of Malaysia, Raja Ahmad Zainuddin Raja Omar, Sultan Ahmad Shah, Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah


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