PETALING JAYA: Ariff Farhan Isa has returned to Kedah to regain his reputation as one of the top players in the team after leaving his home state two years ago.
He knows only a good performance in the Super League will make his return worthwhile.
However, the 24-year-old will not get to play his usual position as the rightback with the Red Eagles as they already have a seasoned player in his place.
He is set to play as a leftback after the club lost three players in that position – Azmeer Yusoff has retired; Singaporean international Shakir Hamzah has joined Perak; and Alif Yusoff has been released from the club.
Ariff is fine with his new position.
“I’m working hard to nail the first-team spot before the season resumes. This second opportunity must not be wasted, and I do not mind playing in any position for the team, ” said Ariff.
“I must adapt to the environment as this team coached by Aidil Sharin are different from the squad two years ago. So, the chemistry must be good if I want to succeed. Ariff was once a hot prospect in Malaysian football when he became the youngest player to play in the Singapore League when he played for Harimau Muda at the age of 16 in 2012. (That record is now held by the Young Lions’ nippy frontman Khairin Nadim, who made his debut at 15).
In 2016, he joined Kedah and helped them win the Malaysia Cup and the FA Cup in 2017.
However, in 2018, he couldn’t maintain his form due to several injuries.
He left his home state to play for PKNS in 2019 and later joined Felda United in 2020.
Even though Felda got relegated last season, Ariff was one of their standouts, and it was no surprise to see him return to his boyhood club, who finished runners-up in the Super League last season.“My return to Kedah is also to improve my chances of playing for the national team, ” he said.
“In PKNS, my form was erratic, but in Felda, I was at the top of my game, but the Covid-19 pandemic complicated matters. Now, I am looking to be a key player for my home state.”
Did you find this article insightful?