PETALING JAYA: Sabah coach Jelius Ating (pic) has no qualms playing second fiddle in the coaching set-up next season.
Jelius created history after guiding the Rhinos to their second Premier League title and gaining promotion to the Super League.
However, the former international will be the assistant coach in their return to the top-flight league because he does not have the required coaching licence.
Malaysian Football League (MFL) regulation stipulates that Super League teams from 2020 onwards must have a coach with a Pro A Licence.
And Sabah Football Association’s (SAFA) appeal to have Jelius lead the team was turned down by the MFL.
“I accept MFL’s decision and I have no problems becoming the assistant coach... of course I’m disappointed but rules are rules and we have to stick by it, ” said Jelius.
“I missed the ongoing FAM Pro licence course because I wanted to focus on helping the team win the Premier League.
“I don’t regret the decision and I’ll wait for the next course.”
SAFA president Datuk Peter Anthony said they are currently on the hunt for a coach.
“I would have loved for Jelius to lead the team but we have to follow the rules, ” said Peter.
“We hope that once he gets his licence he can become the coach in the future.”