JOHOR BARU: It’s high time for Malaysian football stadiums to get a facelift.
So, kudos to the Football Malaysia Limited Liability Partnership (FMLLP) for taking the first step in securing ownership of several stadiums as part of their initiative in improving local football facilities in the country.
Chief executive officer Kevin Ramalingam (pic) said upgrading of the facilities was one item on the agenda in the 50-year blueprint signed with Spain’s La Liga to boost the development of Malaysian football.
“We don’t need La Liga to say that the football facilities in the country is poor because we can see that,” said Kevin in a press conference after FMLLP signed an agreement with leading e-commerce platform Shopee at a hotel here yesterday.
Under the agreement, Shopee sealed the deal as title sponsor of Malaysia’s FA Cup. They also hold the rights as the exclusive online shopping platform for e-tickets and football merchandise.
Kevin said football facilities in the country would continue to deteriorate in the next 10 to 12 years if no action was taken.
“We are looking at two or three small stadiums especially in the Klang Valley.
“There are many teams there and most of them share the same football venue.
“With the support from our sponsors, we can own the stadiums.”
He said FMLLP would discuss the matter with the respective local councils, as the local authorities owned them.
“Once we get the stadiums and make the improvements, we’ll then rent it to the teams for usage of the stadiums.”
Meanwhile, Kevin said fans should not make a mountain out of a molehill over the status of feeder clubs in M-League.
In the M-League, only Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) and Terengganu have feeder teams playing in the Premier League.
He said the role of the clubs was to support the main teams, especially in player development.
“When the board first made several changes to the regulations pertaining to the feeder club status, no one complained, despite teams having three representatives each in the board,” said Kevin.
“If other teams want to have feeder teams, they are most welcome to do so. FMLLP are happy to approve their requests if they meet all the requirements,” he added.