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Published: Friday July 20, 2007 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Sunday July 7, 2013 MYT 11:40:50 AM

Teong Kim says sad state of affairs due to lack of infrastructure


PETALING JAYA: Former international Lim Teong Kim is not surprised at all over the sad state of affairs in Malaysian football. 

The assistant coach of Bayern Munich Under-19 football team said that the dismal showing of the national team in the Asian Cup Finals was expected and the lack of infrastructure had hindered the growth of the game in the country. 

“Bayern Munich are the top club in Germany. We have a very good infrastructure – five training fields and more coming up soon,” said Teong Kim, who is here to check out the facilities for the club's participation in the Champions Youth Cup (CYC), which kicks off on Aug 8. 

Bayern Munich are in Group D and their matches against Malaysia, Chelsea and PSV Eindhoven will be played in Kuching. 

Teong Kim: ‘When football is still the same here after so many years, how can we expect to see any changesto the game or standard?’

“We have a complete infrastructure to cater for the professional team and also the youth teams. In fact, we have 11 youth teams in age-group between eight and 23. The other clubs in the Bundesliga also have a similar set-up.” 

In the Finals, Malaysia lost all three matches in Group C. They were thrashed by China (1-5) and Uzbekistan (0-5) and were beaten 0-2 by Iran. 

The 44-year-old Teong Kim said it was not fair to put the blame on the team when changes were not made to check the rot in the system. 

He added that he had left the country for almost two decades but he had not seen changes or concerted efforts to develop the game, even in his home state Malacca where he started out playing for at the age of 17. 

“When football is still the same here after so many years, how can we expect to see any changes to the game or standard? Why criticise the present batch of players and keep banging them on their heads for failures when no one cares for the development of the game,” he said. 

“Football is a national agenda. I feel that every state should have an ideal infrastructure to develop the game. 

“I have been in Bayern Munich for eight years now. Even the eight-year-old players travel extensively to play in invitational tournaments to gain experience. There are eight professional coaches at the youth level and players get plenty of exposure. 

“The facilities are well-equipped with dressing rooms, rehabilitation rooms, physiotherapy, sauna and relaxation rooms. 

“In Germany, we have technical problems but no infrastructure problems. If there are no fields how can the coaches get to work? 

“The National Sports School in Bukit Jalil alone is not good enough. State FAs must get their infrastructure in place otherwise they cannot expect to produce results. 

“I am just trying to pass my experience and knowledge learnt in Bayern Munich. It is difficult to see success if changes are not made. There is a saying in Germany – changes bring prosperity, contentment brings complacency.” 

Teong Kim was a member of the national team who won the gold medal in the Kuala Lumpur SEA Games in 1989. That was the last time the national senior team emerged as the champions of the regional international tournament. 

He added that there was no point in coaxing players to ply their trade abroad if they had no desire to go in the first place. 

“I left to play in the Bundesliga in 1988 because I had the desire to do it,” said Teong Kim, who played for Division Two club Hertha Berlin. 


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