No quick fix – 10 years for Mi­das touch to work

The Borneo Post - - FRONT PAGE -

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s foot­ball for­tunes will take some 10 years to turn around, to re­live the golden age of the 1970s and early 80s, said for­mer na­tional player Khalid Ali.

He be­lieves a decade is about enough time for the Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion of Malaysia (FAM) led by Tunku Is­mail Sul­tan Ibrahim to bring back the golden era of Hari­mau Malaysia.

The Tunku Mahkota of Jo­hor’s ( TMJ) Mi­das touch, said Khalid, changed the for­tunes of the Jo­hor Darul Ta’zim squad, un­der­scor­ing his ca­pa­bil­ity to re­alise the dream of all Malaysians af­ter three som­bre decades.

“From the vi­sion and mis­sion out­lined by Tunku Is­mail, I be­lieve that in 10 years from now, fans in the coun­try can def­i­nitely see the na­tional team show its prow­ess in Asia again. Tunku Is­mail’s Key Per­for­mance In­di­ca­tors ( KPIs) in JDT proved his abil­ity and it is not

Tunku Is­mail’s Key Per­for­mance In­di­ca­tors (KPIs) in JDT proved his abil­ity and it is not sur­pris­ing if it can be done with the na­tional team as well. Khalid Ali, for­mer na­tional player

sur­pris­ing if it can be done with the na­tional team as well,” he told Ber­nama yes­ter­day.

Recog­nis­ing the fact there were no short­cuts to re- con­quer the Asian stage, Khalid, a key player be­hind Malaysia’s suc­cess in the qual­i­fy­ing cam­paign for the 1980 Moscow Olympics, be­lieved FAM should pro­duce more tal­ented play­ers.

He said the de­sire to re­cap­ture Asia in the next 10 years was not im­pos­si­ble if the FAM pro­duces play­ers of qual­ity on par with neigh­bour­ing coun­try Thai­land.

“It is im­pos­si­ble to achieve the level of great­ness such as that of Ja­pan, South Korea and Saudi Ara­bia as long as we still lack qual­ity play­ers.

“We can­not yet cope with the Thai team who are now com­pet­ing with the big Asian teams in the 2018 World Cup qual­i­fiers,” he said.

Khalid said fans should also play their role as the twelfth player of the squad through their sup­port.

Hence, fans should not hope for a quick fix but to give a lit­tle time to Tunku Is­mail to steer his fleet to for­mu­late an agenda to re­store the dig­nity of the coun­try in foot­ball.

Khalid also de­scribed Tunku Is­mail as an open-minded per­son ready to ac­cept any form of con­struc­tive crit­i­cism.

He said this freed up ev­ery­one to voice any opin­ion for the progress of foot­bal l in a pro­fes­sional man­ner.

“TMJ does not like peo­ple who like to curry favour. TMJ is a leader who is de­ci­sive, but can ac­cept con­struc­tive crit­i­cism from sup­port­ers for the com­mon good,” he said. — Ber­nama

Tunku Is­mail Sul­tan Ibrahim

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