Monday, May 07, 2007


Manchester United, Valencia and the Asian Cup

Manchester United have lined up an Asian tour that includes a date in Kuala Lumpur on 27th July. Malaysia of course are one of the hosts of the Asian Cup and the 4 hosts, the others are Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand had agreed not to engage in any other footballing activities for a period of 10 days before, during and 3 days after the tournament.

Valencia too may have upset the AFC with their 3 day trip to Jakarta that has seen a match pencilled in for the day after the Final at the same stadium. Obviously both visits fall foul of the agreement.

I'm English but to me surely the aim of the AFC is too promote Asian football. But what of the local FA's? Visits from Manchester United would be a boost to the pockets of the Malaysian FA but surely they should be devoting their energies into promoting the showpiece Asian Cup? It is surely in the long term interests of the game here to have youngsters getting interested in Malaysia's forward line (dunno who they are!!) rather than seeing apathetic overpaid primadonnas strutting their stuff for the cameras but barely breaking into a sweat on the pitch.

Things are slightly different here in Indonesia. Fans here have been so starved of any kind of top level football that some people have expressed a desire in seeing the Asian Cup. Valencia is just the icing on the cake. But even so the focus should be on the local stuff and having Valencia's players being photographed at Plaza Indonesia just isn't doing Bambang & Co any favours.

You could argue the market should be allowed to decide who they wanted to see but as I said earlier the local FA's have their own brief and that is to develop local football. Double booking European clubs during this showpiece gathering suggests that maybe their hearts aren't really in their jobs.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?