ALOR SETAR: Kedah coach Tan Cheng Hoe has made a timely return to take charge of the Red Eagles’ final phase of preparations for Sunday’s Malaysia Cup final against Selangor.
Cheng Hoe was not on the bench during Kedah’s 1-0 victory over Felda United in their final Super League match at the Darulaman Stadium on Friday.
He was in Bosnia as part of the Kedah Football Association’s (KFA) three-day working visit to Sarajevo FC.
Sarajevo FC are owned by Malaysian businessman Tan Sri Vincent Tan, who is also the owner of English Championship outfit Cardiff City.
KFA signed a memorandum of understanding with Cardiff in 2013 to help improve the state’s football, especially for youth training programmes.
“Rumours that I went to Bosnia to scout for new import players for Kedah (for 2017) are not true,” said Cheng Hoe, who returned home on Monday.
“It was just a three-day working trip on the invitation of the Sarajevo FC to explore ways on how we can co-operate with the Bosnian club. My mind is occupied with the Malaysia Cup final. I have not thought about next season yet.”
Cheng Hoe missed Kedah’s run to the Malaysia Cup final last year as he was away in China attending a pro-licence coaching course. He was flown back by KFA in time to take his place on the Kedah bench for the final, but could not prevent the Red Eagles from going down 2-0 to Selangor in the final.
With both teams to meet again in a repeat final on Sunday, Cheng Hoe is determined to seek a happy ending – and his first Malaysia Cup as the head coach of Kedah.