Pahang eyeing foreign coach for next season

Thomas Dooley, former US football captain.

PETALING JAYA: Pahang are looking for a coach, preferably a foreigner, to chart the fortunes of the team in the Super League next season.

Present coach Dollah Salleh is still very much part of the team’s plans but manager Datuk Suffian Awang wants to get someone well versed in Asean football.

He believes that experience will be the key to build a championship-winning side for the future.

“There are several foreign and local coaches wanting to be the head coach of Pahang. We have been assessing their credentials and will make a decision soon. Dollah is still the coach but will be evaluated by the club, ” said Suffian.“We have to look at everyone’s capability and ensure we get the best for the team. We want to get someone who knows the football landscape of this region.

“By getting someone of that stature, I believe it will put Pahang on the right path. We want the coach to be able to share and bring changes within the team.

“As for players, we hope to have many homegrown players especially youngsters from the President and Youth Cup teams. We will also finalise the Asean and Asian players’ quota soon.”

The coaches who are linked to Pahang are Portuguese Eduardo Almeida, Bosnian Milomir Seslija, Serbian Risto Vidakovic and American Thomas Dooley.

Of the lot, Dooley is popular as he has played for the US from 1992 to 1999.

He featured for the US team in the 1994 World Cup and captained the team in the 1998 edition. He was assistant to the United States coach Jurgen Klinsmann from 2011 and 2012 and then coached the Philippines from 2014 to 2018.

Almeida is no stranger to Malaysian football as he has coached Melaka from 2017 to 2018. The other teams he has coached are Indonesian club Semen Padang and Thai club Ubon United.

Seslija coached Sabah from 2012 to 2013 while Vidakovic was capped eight times for Serbia and his last coaching assignment was with Ceres Negros in the Philippines League. He also coached Spanish clubs Cadiz, Ecija and Real Betis B.

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