PETALING JAYA: Anyone interested in coaching the national team?
Go ahead and apply now.
The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) have decided to advertise the position of national team and national Under-23 team coaches.
This is nothing new. A year ago, FAM advertised for a national team head coach after deciding not to extend Datuk K. Rajagopal’s contract in 2013. Frenchman Philippe Troussier was among those who applied.
Although FAM courted Troussier, the deal fell through and the national body ended up appointing Dollah Salleh (pic below) at the 11th hour in July last year.
This time, it’s Dollah who has quit, vacating the hot seat on Sept 4 – a day after the national team’s 10-0 defeat to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in a World Cup qualifying match in Abu Dhabi.
National Under-23’s Datuk Ong Kim Swee was appointed as the interim coach. He oversaw the team’s 2-1 loss to Saudi Arabia on Sept 8 and will continue till December.
By which time, according to FAM deputy president Datuk Mokhtar Ahmad, the new national team and national Under-23 coaches will be appointed.
Mokhtar headed the FAM special task force’s first meeting at Wisma FAM in Kelana Jaya on Monday and said that three things were discussed – the two coaching vacancies and the Harimau Muda programme.
“A lot of people want us to hire a foreign coach, but we’re open and transparent … we’ll appoint the candidates who meet our criteria,” said Mokhtar after the meeting.
“We will also set up a selection panel with members from the National Sports Council (NSC) to look into the appointment of the national Under-23 coach.”
“A ‘White Paper’ on whether the Harimau Muda programme should be scrapped or not will be brought up at the next FAM executive committee meeting.
“The ‘White Paper’ will be produced based on the input from media representatives, former players, coaches and academicians.”
In another development, FAM competitions committee chairman Datuk Seri Afandi Hamzah said that Malaysia Cup matches will be postponed if the haze condition worsens – with the air pollutant index (API) reading exceeding 150.
“We’ll decide on the matches based on the API reading at 8pm. If the API reading exceeds the 150 level, the matches will be postponed,” said Afandi, who is also FAM’s deputy president.
“The match commissioner will discuss with the teams before calling off the matches. The new dates for the postponed matches will be decided by the competitions committee.”