PETALING JAYA: The Kelantan players will have a new diet for their pre-games meal to help enhance their performance when they play in the M-League this season.
This is part of a more scientific approach, which their new technical officer, Dali Omar, is taking to prepare the players for matches.
“Before they usually take rice or sometimes soup with bread. This is not very good. They need more energy-giving food to help them sustain the pace for the full duration of a match,” said Dali from Kota Baru.
The former international added that the new menu included spaghetti, pasta and more fruits.
“In modern-day sports, we need to take a scientific approach to shape up the players and this involves the food they take,” said Dali.
The 58-year-old Dali returned to his home state recently after staying in Australia for 30 years. In Australia, he played for several clubs before turning to coaching. His last appointment in Australia was the coaching director of the Sydney Amateur Football Club.
“Kelantan used to have a strong team but their standard has declined. I hope to raise their standard by taking a professional and scientific approach to groom the players,” said Dali.
For a start, the players attended a series of lectures, which began yesterday at the USM in Kubang Kerian, by nutritionist Prof Sarjit Singh.
Kelantan have yet to sign up a foreign player for the new season, which begins next month and Dali said that they were negotiating with Thai striker Voravut Srimaka for an extension of a contract.
“If the deal falls through, I believe the locals would be able to do the job. The players have to be more committed to the cause,” he said.
Kelantan will be involved in a quadrangular tournament this weekend against three Kelantan-based Premier II outfits – TNB, SKMK -Transnasional and JPS. All the matches will be played at the Sultan Mohamed IV Stadium in Kota Baru.