Saturday, January 31, 2009


Queen's Cup, Thailand

The pre season Queen's Cup kicks off this weekend - looks like I chose the wrong weekend to head north eh?

This weekend's fixtures can be found here. There are five groups and the winner of each group will join Chonburi and two South Korean sides starting 13 Feb.


Regional youth tournaments

These dates come from the Cambodian Football Website

11-26 July - AFF under 19
15-30 Aug - AFF under 16
3-18 Oct - AFC under 16
1-15 Nov - AFC under 19

No venues have been announced yet.


Persitara at risk

Persitara from North Jakarta are at risk of losing their professional license and being kicked out of the ISL. They have yet to appoint a suitably qualified coach, minimium A license, and have been told to inform the Super League on Monday what they intend doing about it.

It's been a barrel of laughs for the club this season. One coach quit before the season even began blaming lack of salary and interference. Another came in, waited for something better then moved on while lately they have been coached by a couple of lads.

Before the season began they hoped to play at the Bung Karno Stadium, think Rochdale playing at Old Trafford, and said they would never play at Lebak Bulus given it's associations with Persija, their bitter rivals.

After playing home games in Soreang and Solo they relocated to ... Lebak Bulus!

Their away game at Persiwa saw them buying tickets along the way, transit Makassar for an age and arrive a few hours before kick off in a climate they are not used to.

On Wednesday they are scheduled to play Persita in Delta Stadium, Sidoarjo. But will they still be in the league or will they get another stay of execution? And what must new signing Prince Bello Kabar be thinking about all this?


Persebaya clear out

Things can get all bums over nipple here at times. Earlier in the season Persipura ditched their manager despite leading the ISL. Then Fredy Muli quit from Persebaya despite seeing them top of the IPL eastern division having dropped just four points in the first half of the season.

Fredy quit because of the Surabaya side's financial woes. Arcan Iurie quit Persik for the same reason. Arcan Iurie is now in charge of Persebaya...this is worse than Days of our Lives!

Chilean striker Javier Rocha has moved up the road to Gresik United. The 31 year old is used to dealing with the removal men having previously played for, among others, Persiba, Persija, Persitara and if memory serves Persigi!

Former Persik keeper Kurnia Sandy has also made the same journey which just shows what a funny old game this is. Last time I met him he told me he wanted a club in and around Jakarta but you can't always get what you want.

Also packing their toothbrush and heading out of dodge, well Surabaya, are I Pute Gede, a former Arema and Persita midfield player who also played in the national side, and Jordi Kartika who have moved east along the coast to Persekabpas Pasuruan.


Indonesia's World Cup bid

One concern expressed by people (read johnny of Philidelphia) about Indonesia's surprise World Cup bid refers to security. Because after all the place is a war zone innit. Bombs going off left right and centre.

Typical, uninformed comment from the great unwashed. No one expressed this when England hosted Euro 96 and the IRA where still a threat. And does anybody remember the last act of terroism at an international sporting event? Try this...


Malaysian FA Cup 1st round

Domestic football returns to the spotlight in Malaysia after the national side lost 5-0 at home to UAE and the coach said the local game wasn't real football.

It's 1st round day in the FA Cup with MSL sides up against MPL sides apart from Johor FC who make the long journey to Penang.

Last season's winners Kedah have a bye through to the next round as do Selangor but 2006 winners Pahang host Selangor PKNS while My Team take on Proton.

In an early game early MSL leaders KL Plus surprisingly lost 2-0 to Harimau Muda.

Previous winners

2008 - Kedah
2007 - Kedah
2006 - Pahang
2005 - Selangor
2004 - Perak

The FA Cup started in 1990 and Selangor have been the most successful having won it four times. KL and Kedah have each won it three times while Perak, Sabah and Perlis have each been runners up thrice.


Another Malaysian brainstorming session


Former national footballers will attend a Youth and Sports Ministry-organised brain-storming session on ways to improve the standard of Malaysian football in Putrajaya on Feb 4.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob hoped the ex-players would provide him with positive feedback to improve the sport.

“We hope they (ex-nationals) will give their views on the subject without fear or favour,” said Ismail Sabri after officiating the Maal Hijrah celebration at Felda Triang 3 in Bera on Thursday.
“We want to get to the root of the problem and we hope to exchange ideas with one another to help save Malaysian football.”

The FA of Malaysia (FAM) came under heavy fire following the 5-0 mauling by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in the Asian Cup qualifying round opening match last week.

Among the football veterans invited to the discussions are “Raja Bola” Datuk Abdul Ghani Minhat, Datuk Soh Chin Aun and Santokh Singh.

Ismail Sabri said the meeting was not to find to find a scapegoat for the poor state of the game in the country.

“It is not right to put the blame here or there because it would not solve anything. It is better for us to sit down and come up with new ideas,” he said.

COMMENT - sorry but before you can remedy something you need to find out what causes the malaise. Gobfests are 10 a penny, or should I say ringitt, and Malaysian football fans, especially the 5,000 who turned up for the UAE debacle, deserve answers and a better future


DPMM to join SLeague?

DPMM FC may play in S-League, Singapore Cup
Jason Thomas
Friday, January 30, 2009
DPMM FC yesterday confirmed rumours that they are interested in playing in the Singapore League (S-League) subject to approval from the International Federation of Association Football (Fifa).The Brunei Times on Jan 10 quoted DPMM FC team manager Pg Waslimin PSJ Momin as saying that the club was "looking at other alternatives such as playing in other foreign leagues" since it was banned from playing in the Malaysian Super League by the Football Association of Malaysia after the Registrar of Societies (RoS) deregistered the Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (Bafa) in November for failing to submit its activity and financial reports as requested.

Pg Waslimin travelled to Singapore this week to meet Football Association of Singapore (FAS) and S-League officials and yesterday revealed that there was still hope for competitive football this season.

"There are still a few matters to be resolved such as the home and away format and approval from Fifa," Pg Waslimin told The Brunei Times yesterday."But in Fifa's eyes Bafa is still the governing body for football in Brunei.

"The S-League has talked to the chairmen of all the clubs (in Singapore) because we want to play our home games in Brunei."

Set to kick off on Feb 16 and end on Nov 8, the S-League will involve 12 teams with each side playing a total of 33 matches during the 2009 season, which is divided into three rounds.Pg Waslimin added that the club would be happy if it could play a third of their games at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas, but admitted that he was resigned to the possibility of S-League officials denying the request.

With only three weeks to go until the season kicks off, fixtures need to be reworked to accommodate DPMM FC and S-League clubs might be hesitant to agree to the idea.

"Whatever it is, the ball is in their (S-League officials) hands," said Pg Waslimin, adding that the club would also be able to compete in the Singapore Cup.Bafa's status and the possibility of DPMM FC joining the S-League will be on the agenda during Asian Football Confederation's (AFC) executive committee meeting early next month, with S-League officials expected to confirm DPMM FC's inclusion either next Wednesday or Thursday.

Bafa secretary-general Pg Matusin Matasan was also fully behind DPMM FC joining the S-League, but said that the matter was one which needed to be resolved between FAS and Bafa."It has nothing to do with Fifa ... this is only between the two associations," he said.

COMMENT - interesting idea and perhaps the reason why the SLeague fixtures haven't appeared yet. But, and a major but, would the other SLeague sides be willing to travel to Brunei for games and all the expense that entails. And a 13 team league? Not sure FIFA would be too happy about that.

Friday, January 30, 2009


Gonzalez to Persib?

This story has Persib Bandung signing goal machine Christian Gonzales from Persik Kediri. More as I hear it...not sure whether the 12 month suspension he received last year still applies or has been rescinded.


Jordan don't take defeat well

SINGAPORE: Singapore police were investigating yesterday after bottles and punches were allegedly thrown following a Singapore-Jordan Asian Cup qualifying match.

Singapore clinched a hard-fought 2-1 win on Wednesday over Jordan, but members of the losing side confronted the Singaporeans on the way to the changing room, Eric Ong, spokesman for the FA of Singapore, said.

“It was unprovoked,” he said. “Punches were thrown. Bottles were thrown. Our players had to protect themselves.”

He said a few members of the Singaporean squad received minor injuries, including scratches, but the incident ended quickly.

Singapore defender Daniel Bennett was quoted as saying by The New Paper that “one of our boys” was celebrating the victory when “suddenly, it was a free-for-all after bottles were thrown.” — AFP

COMMENT - shit often happens in the tunnel


Trinidad to return to Persiba?

26 year old Argentinian striker Adrian Trinidad had a successful spell with Persiba Balikpapan back in 2007 before moving on to the bright lights of KL Plus (a team sponsored by a road in Malaysia) then Perth Glory.

But the Aussies have released him and now his old club Persiba are interested in having him back. Coach Daniel Roekito has been trialling Roger Batoum but given a choice between the Semen Padang striker, who has played played for Persija and Persikabo, and Trinidad it is no contest.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Images from last night

Indonesia v Australia 1st half
Indonesia v Australia 2nd half


Indonesia bidding for World Cup 2022

Despite the disappointing result last night Indonesian football has still given us something to laugh about. The country is bidding for the 2022 World Cup!

I know, it’s good to be ambitious. But can you imagine Brazil playing Japan in Samarindra or Germany against England in Soreang? Netherlands playing Argentina in Palembang?

Knocking aside it would be wonderful to have the World Cup here. But where do they intend rustling up the extra stadiums? What about the roads? Hotels? Of course, the government is expected to sort all that out. Hmmm…


Indonesia v Australia 0-0

Indonesian coach Benny Dollo apparently said after the game that he looked on the 0-0 as a point won, not two lost. I disagree. After three months preparation this side should have beaten the Aussies who lacked experience and had never played together except in Bruce’s Fantasy Football.

All is not doom and gloom for Indonesia but here ain’t too many rays of sunshine either. A second clean sheet is never a bad thing. One could quibble playing against an Oman side who had just won the Gulf Cup and a weakened Socceroos rather devalues that achievement but then again you can only play against what’s in front of you. Tables only record the results, the rest is forgotten.

Adding Mahman Abdurahman to the defence alongside Charis Yulianto has brought some strength to the back four but there will always be suspicions until the pairing come up against real quality or keep another blank in a hostile foreign stadium. Bringing in Ricardo Salmpessy to replace Ismed Sofyan has cost Benny’s men pin point deadball delivery but the former is content to concentrate on his main job and that is defending.

Persipura striker Boaz Solossa has had a torrid time with injuries this last 18 months but in the first half he showed flashes of his old self including one surging run where brute force and pace saw him running at the Aussie defence before running out of steam. Musafry buzzed first half and proved a constant irritant but like his partners, including a Budi Sudarsono who rarely rose above average on the night, fired blanks.

Ah yes, scoring goals. The raison d’etre of this sweet game of ours. Nothing in the last five apart from an own goal. Bambang Pamungkas scores for fun in the ISL but has struggled of late with an injury and last night the record goal scorer didn’t make the starting XI. Musafry had an impressive start to the season with unfancied Persiba and looked good in his international performances but apart from a goal in the GRCC in Yangon last November he hasn’t celebrated too much either.

The sad truth is this current side won’t get much better if this is what happens after all that preparation. Is the time right to look at younger players? The SEA Games are being held in Laos later this year and that will afford us an opportunity to see the next generation in action. But for now we must accept the fact that all the undoubted potential this country possesses on the football field will remain unfulfilled. At least for the near future.


Asian Cup Qualifiers 28/01/09

Indonesia v Australia 0-0 50,000
Horsion, Salempessy, Charis Yulianto, Maman Abdurahman, Isnan Ali, Hariono, Firman Utina, Ponaryo Astaman, Boaz Solossa (Bambang Pamungkas), Musafry (Elie Aiboy), Budi Sudarsono (Erol Iba)

Thailand v Iran 0-0 10,000

Singapore v Jordan 2-1

Comment and images from the Indonesian game later...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Indonesia v Australia preview

Seven hours to kick off and I'm looking forward to a good few gargles!

Indonesia have problems. They have been in training since November (three month mid season break! Eat your heart out Pim!) but their last four games have produced just one own goal and three defeats admittedly against pretty strong opposition.

AFF Cup v Singapore 0-2
AFF Cup v Thailand 0-1
AFF Cup v Thailand 1-2
Asian Cup v Oman 0-0

Not a run designed to strike terror into the visiting Aussies, second team or not. A solitary goal and that from an og, you don't need coaching badges to see where the Indonesians struggle.

A strike force built around Bambang Pamungkas, Boaz Solossa and Budi Sudarsono should have goals aplenty within them but when it comes to getting on the pitch they seem to struggle. Little is produced from the midfield, the flanks are not tested as often as they should be, perhaps they get a little naive.

Players like Elie Aiboy, Firman Utina are undoubted talents but we will never know how good they are until they do something on the big stage and Indonesia have failed there big time. Among the ASEAN nations they just squeeze into the top 4, Asia wide they just don't appear on the radar.

Today sees an experienced squad up against a bunch of players with little experience. Do Indonesia have that litle something, the je ne c'est pas to get behind the Aussies, to get in their faces, to unsettle them. e sure with more than half the team making debuts they sure as hell won't be wanting to take too may risks. Not in front of 75,000 hostile fans and under the critical eye of their coach.

Risk. Do the Indonesians have the balls to take risks? Do they have the stamina to get on the front foot and stay there all game? Do they have the creativity to unlock a packed defence?

Recent results suggest not. Is the draw in Oman the start of a new era in Indonesian football or will we return to the same old, same old? Tonight could well be their best chance of a victory of their southern's up to them to grab it.


Thai heads south

Persijap Jepara have signed Thai Phaitoon Thiabma. The 28 year old previously played for Osotspa in the Thai Premier League

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Precious to Arema?

Singaporean international Precious Emuejeraye is still without a club. Rumours had linked him to big spenders Sengkang Punggol but now comes a report that Indonesian side Arema Malang are interested in the defender.

Coach Ghunul Yakin has had a busy mid season strengthening his squad but is also in need of a defender after Aaron moved to PSIS.

One Arema site links the Crazy Lions with a couple of African defenders, Marcelin Gaha and Boubacar Keita while not mentioning Precious.


Gombak United sign young Aussie

Coach Darren Stewart's connections down under have unearthed a young defender. Goran Subara has signed a 12 month deal with Gombak United and is looking forward to a season in the city state.


Podcast and ESPN

Just come of the phone where I have been talkingto Scott McIntyre about tomorrow's game between Indonesia and Australia. Scott works for SBS down under and we were, I think, recording a podcast to be broadcast later.

Link when I have it lah

I have also written a preview on ESPN about the game which can be found here.

UPDATE AND GROVELLING APOLOGY - It has been pointed out to me by a couple of readers that I made a couple of mistakes in my ESPN srticle. It is of course summer down there at the moment and I must say I really dropped a bollock on that one. And Australia play Japan in February, not March.

As part of my punishment I have to watch continuous Home & Away episodes while listening to Johnny bloody Farnham...


KTB change their name

Krung Thai Bank look like they will be known as BG FC or Bangkok Glass. As Alice nearly said went she went to wonderland, dafter and dafter.

In addition this new blog is saying PEA will be called Faifa Ayuthya which is a bit better. Faifa is a transliteration of the Thai word which means electric or electricity


Asian Cup ticket sales

Singapore v Jordan

National Stadium East & West Entrances (5.30pm onwards)
Grandstand: $10.00Gallery: $6.00(Adult)Gallery: $2.00(Student / Senior Citizen)*
* Only applicable for secondary school, ITE & Junior College students with proof of valid concession passes; Senior Citizens must be 60 years and above as of 2009 with proof of identification)
^ FREE entry for primary school students and below (applicable for Gallery seating only; students must display valid concession passes for entry into stadium).

Thailand v Iran

Tickets for the match are 100, 200, 300 and 500 baht. They are available at Thai Ticket Major outlets and also at the stadium from 1pm on match day.

Indonesia v Australia

75,000 tickets are on sale for this game.

VIP West: Rp 100,000
VIP East: Rp 50,000
Class I: Rp 50,000
Class II: Rp 30,000
Class III: Rp 20,000


Results backlog!

Indonesian Super League

PSIS v Persita 0-0
Persijap v Persitara 3-1

Thai King's Cup

North Korea v Lebanon 0-1
Thailand v Denmark 2-2 (3-5 on pens)

Thursday, January 22, 2009


More upsets in Copa Indonesia

Persema v Persela 2-0 (Persema win 2-1 on aggregate)
Persiba v Mitra Kukar 1-0 (Mitra Kukar win 2-1 on aggregate)

Two more ISL sides fall by the wayside as Persema and Mitra Kukar go through to the 3rd round of the Copa Indonesia.

UPDATE - Whoops, Persiba won 3-0 on agg!


Chinese New Year and Australia

According to the Indonesian FA the Socceroos will be arriving on four separate flights for their game against Indonesia next Wednesday!

Two groups will be landing on the Sunday and two more on the Monday with the manager Pim Verbeek arriving 48 hours before the kick off.

My pub team used to do this, especially for away games. We'd set off from our homes, pick up other players and rendezvous at various before and after the kick off but always before the bar opened.

Of course I'm not suggesting Australia are sending a pub team. An inexperienced one yes and I'm sure Verbeek would agree a not particularly well prepared one. But I think, though I have no confirmation about this, that the staggered flights may be linked to Chinese New Year and not to any slapstick planning downunder.

Also there is the added fact that the players are spread round the country which doesn't help with logistics.

But this lack of preparation could come back to haunt the Aussies. Why didn't they come over and acclimatise?

Another spanner in the works is the Australians ongoing World Cup qualifying campaign that sees them going to Jaoan in a few weeks time. Simply put the Asian Cup ain't that high on the list of priorities...


Results 21 January

Persija v Pelita Jaya 1-0 (Aliyudin) Friendly
PSPS V PSMS 0-0 Copa Indonesia (PSMS win 4-2 on agg)
Persikad v Persikabo 1-0 (Muhamed Husen) Copa Indonesia (Persikabo win 4-3 on agg)
Malaysia v UAE 0-5 (Mohammed Omar-29,45, Ismail Matar-63,76 Faisal Khalil-86) Asian Cup

China v Vietnam 6-1 Asian Cup
North Korea v Denmark XI 0-1 King's Cup
Thailand v Lebanon 2-1 King's Cup (Teerasil, Suchao; Mahmud El Ali)

COMMENT - The Malaysia coach Sathianathan says that domestic Malaysian football is rubbish and slammed the level of player's fitness after seeing his side slump embarrassingly at home to UAE in their first Asian Cup qualifier last night.

In the King's Cup Lebanon twice walked off the pitch during their 2-1 defeat against Thailand leading to on field punch ups which sounds a lot of fun. The ref ended up blowing early 'cos he was so fed up at the players' antics.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Persija trialling Egyptian

Persija's search for a target man continues. Now they are looking at Egyptian Ramadhan Ragab who could well get a run out this afternoon in a friendly against Pelita Jaya.

UPDATE - They're still loking after releasing Ragab!


Persita and Persitara

Persita Tangerang will play their home games at Siliwangi Stadium in Bandung in the second half of the ISL season. High risk home games against Persitara, Persija and Persib will be relocated elsewhere.

Persitara's cup tie with PSIS has been rearranged til 8 February at Tugu Stadium, Jakarta. PSIS have a slender 1-0 lead from the first leg.


Benny calls up four more

Indonesia have added four players to the 18 man squad that travelled to Oman recently. Pieter Romaropen (Persiwa), Elie Aiboy (PSMS), kiper Dian Agus Prasetyo (Pelita Jaya) and Rahmat Latif (PSM) will join the rest as they prepare to meet Australia next Wednesday.

Latif and Romaropen have yet to make their national team debuts.


Hundreds of Aussies

In seven days time Indonesia host Australia at the Bung Karno Stadium in the Asian Cup qualifiers. Officials anticipate something like 500 dinky di Aussies will be supporting their team and arrangements are being made to guarantee their safety in the stadium.

Far be it for me to put the Aussies off from coming but perhaps they should each wear an akubra? Those lads in the upper tier do like a laugh once in a while and they also have very weak bladders so, for a jolly good wheeze, they like to fill plastic water bottles with their teh botol stained piss and throw it in to the seats below.

English though I am this game does have a special meaning to me. I spent a few years living downunder and indeed my first Socceroos game was against 1 FK Gothenburg back in 1988 at Parramatta Stadium. Sorry, that's not strictly true. I also saw them play Arsenal at Highbury in 1984 in front of 4,500 fans!

John Kosmina played in that game for the Aussies and it was a kind of home coming for him having spent some time with the Arsenal in the late 70's. Next time I saw him play was in the early 90's in the NSW State League. A group of us had headed south to see the mighty St George take on the ridiculously named Westfield Sutherland Shire Sharks and golly did we have some banter with Kossie!?

Despite my links to Australia they are in the past and next week the last thing I want is to be mistaken for one. Time to dig out an old England shirt for the game and stick close to the mighty Ibu.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Provisional Electricity Authority look to ACL

Nick McCormack

Thai champions Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA) have a difficult road to this year’s AFC Champions League (ACL) but even if they fail to make the grade the Electric Men have found the spark that can only take the club forward. “Thai clubs have to ensure the professionalism of the players and of course they need the financial support that will enable everyone to become more professional,” PEA head coach Prapol Pongpanich told

Thai sides have struggled at the continental level ever since Bangkok-based BEC Tero Sasana rocked the Asian football scene by reaching the final of the inaugural ACL at the expense of some Asian club football heavyweights. And the reason the Kingdom’s clubs have continually disappointed in the ACL in the years that followed the Fire Dragons’ runner-up finish to Al Ain in 2003 is straightforward according to Prapol.

“It’s partly because the lack of practice but primarily because the players are not truly professional,” suggested the 2008 Thailand Premier League coach of the year. Inspired by the first-ever ACL MVP Therdsak Chaiman, BEC Tero entertained and impressed in their run to the 2003 ACL final as football fans in the ASEAN nation saw the team come close to becoming only the second Thai side since Thai Farmers Bank won the second of their back-to-back Asian Club Championship titles in 1995 to win top AFC honours.

But the lack of professionalism that Prapol mentioned has since cost Thai clubs on the international stage. Chonburi had their moments last year – including a 1-1 draw in Japan with eventual champions Gamba Osaka – while the nine goals from Krung Thai Bank’s Nantawat Thansopa saw the 24-year-old striker emerge as the 2008 ACL’s top scorer.

But the reality remains that Thai clubs have struggled to keep pace in Asia’s premier club competition. In the tournaments that followed 2003, teams from Thailand won just nine out of 42 matches, while an administrative bungle resulted in PEA and then league champions Thailand Tobacco Monopoly being disqualified from the 2006 ACL.

Things won’t change overnight for Thai football but by embracing the ethos of professionalism that the AFC firmly believes will develop Asian club football the situation for Thailand can certainly improve.

Qualification to this year’s ACL provides an additional impetus towards professionalism for PEA but Prapol’s side face two tough one-leg play-offs in order to book their ticket to Group G, where two-time Asian Club Championship winners Suwon Samsung Bluewings, Kashima Antlers, and 2006 ACL quarter-finalists Shanghai Shenhua await.

They must overcome AFC Cup 2008 quarter-finalists Singapore Armed Forces and then, if successful against the seven-time S.League champions, PEA will enter the unknown with a match against Indonesia’s PSMS Medan.

“Playing Singapore Armed Forces is very good because it can be an indicator of each national league’s performance but at the moment I don’t have any information at all on the team from Indonesia,” said Prapol, whose team will have home advantage against the Warriors when they meet on February 18.

“We are well prepared to practice over coming weeks and we will play at least four warm-up matches with Thai teams,” Prapol continued “We have added ten more players, including A-list local and international players.”

While a place in the revamped ACL is by no means guaranteed there is still a palpable buzz around Provincial Electricity Authority as Prapol and his charges generate an atmosphere of professionalism at the club. And that can only bode well for the future of Thai football.

COMMENT - perhaps they could make a start by changing their name? Football clubs increasingly are becoming brands and who the hell wants to be associated with some sparkies? Oh and for the latest with PSMS keep watching this space!


Oman v Indonesia 0-0

Great result last night for Indonesia in Muscat as they held the newly crowned Gulf Cup winners to a 0-0 draw.

Playing away in the gulf is never easy and perhaps the Omanis were a bit knackered from their exertions against Saudi Arabia but football is all about results and, like Thailand last week against Jordan, Indonesia will return home thinking job well done.

Next up, the Aussies at the Bung Karno.

Markus Horison

Ricardo Salempessy Charis Yulianto Mahman Abdurahman Isnan Ali

Firman Utina Ponaryo Astaman Hariono

Boaz Solossa Bambang Pamungkas Budi Sudarsono

Musafri replaced Budi Sudarsono 46'
Nova Arianto replaced Firman Utina 65'
Erol Iba replaced Boaz Solossa 83'

Monday, January 19, 2009


Persitara cup tie cancelled

Persitara's game against PSIS was called off at the last minute earlier this afternoon. Security officials are apparently unable to handle more than one task at a time and a fire had them overloaded.

No news yet on a rearranged date.

I got home from work hoping to catch this on TV and there was nothing there. Nothing I tell thee. It's a good job I'd decided against going to the game or I'd be one unhappy bunny


Former Perak players look for FIFA intervention

Christopher Raj

FORMER Perak players Carlos Caceres, Jorge Nunoz and Mario Bario (left), who featured for Perak in the 2007 and 2008 seasons, have written to Fifa seeking the world body's assistance to help claim a combined total of US$54,000 (RM186,000) owing to them in salaries by the Perak FA.

The Chilean trio have waited for about four months since writing to the FA of Malaysia and have not received a reply.The FA of Malaysia said that it's is not its fault since it is the Perak Football Association (PFA) who owe the money.But where Fifa is concerned it only deals with the national association and not state FAs. "We have officially written to Fifa with our complaint regarding the late payment of our salaries.

We cannot wait any longer as there has been no response from the Perak FA at all," said one of the players who wished not to be named.The players decided to write to Fifa after learning that Perak FA president Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin had said that its (Perak FA) immediate concern is taking care of the current squad."At the moment, we can only take care of the present squad.

"The former players who have not been paid for five to six months will have to wait. "We will only be able to pay them when our financial standing improves," Nizar said at a recent PFA press conference.

The PFA, in wages alone, owes RM600,000 with its former coach Steve Darby claiming RM 120,000.

"The PFA can take up to two years to pay, are we suppose to wait that long? How can a professional association treat players like this," added the player.


Myanmar Premier League

YANGON (17 Jan 2009) – Finance & Revenue are at the top of the Myanmar Premier League after three matches in the new 2008/2009 season.Finance & Revenue have picked up seven points from two wins and a draw while Energy are second with the same number of points from matches played.And both teams are on the same goal difference although Finance & Revenue have scored more goals with five as against Energy’s three goals.Third in the standings are Commerce, who have picked up six points from two wins off their first two matches of the new season.


1. Finance & Revenue 7pts
2. Energy 7pts
3. Commerce 6pts
4. Transport 4pts
5. Forestry 4pts
6. Construction 4pts
7. Air Bagan 4pts
8. KBZ 4pts
9. Defence 3pts
10. Home Affairs
11. Railways 2pts
12. YCDC 1pt
13. Post and Telegraph 0pt
14. Agricultures Irrigation 0pt

COMMENT - Maybe I've been here too long but that looks less like a football league table and more like a ranking of corruption!


Australian squad to face Indonesia

Australian coach Pim Verbeek has announced his squad for the upcoming Asian Cup qualifiers against Indonesia on 28 January. As expected he has gone with an all A League selection, no European club would release a player for a non FIFA date, so there will be plenty of debutants stepping on the field at Bung Karno next Wednesday.

Given a full round of fixtures the weekend before in Australia, the squad won't be getting much quality preparation before the game. They are due to arrive in Jakarta on the Sunday before the game.

Danny ALLSOPP Melbourne Victory 2 (0), Billy CELESKI Melbourne Victory -, Shannon COLE Sydney FC -, Robert CORNTHWAITE Adelaide United -, Tarek ELRICH Newcastle Jets -Eugene GALEKOVIC Adelaide United -, Dean HEFFERNAN Central Coast Mariners -, Scott JAMIESON Adelaide United -, Dylan MACALLISTER Central Coast Mariners -, Matthew McKAY Queensland Roar 1 (0), Craig MOORE Queensland Roar 40 (3), Tom PONDELJAK Melbourne Victory 4 (0), Paul REID Adelaide United -, Matt SIMON Central Coast Mariners -Michael THEOKLITOS Melbourne Victory -, Archie THOMPSON Melbourne Victory 30 (21), Matthew THOMPSON Newcastle Jets -, Nikolai TOPOR-STANLEY Perth Glory 3 (0), Rodrigo VARGAS Melbourne Victory -, Danny VUKOVIC Central Coast Mariners -, Michael ZULLO Queensland Roar -

When Sydney played Persik Kediri in the Champions League back in 2007 they were woefully unprepared and lost 2-1. Surely Verbeek with all his experience won't make the same mistake?


Dolphins aim higher

You almost got to feel sorry for Sengkang Pungol last season in the SLeague. In their 33 league games they managed something like 12 goals, I forget the exact figure, and wins were as common as snow on Bukit Timah.

But a breath of fresh air is blowing through Hougang Stadium now. A high profile coach has come in and money has been invested on established and aging star names while there is also even a blog now for die hard fans.

Former Woodlands Wellington coach Jorg Steinebrunner being appointed sent out a strong message that the Dolphins finally meant business. Ironically I was at the SP v WW game last season at the Hougang and before I fell asleep (jetlag!) the highlight had been the abuse hurled at JS by some of the home support.

Former national team captain Aide Iskander came in but he wasn't the last major signing. Murphy Wiredu and Anthony Bahadur were signed after impressing in a sries of friendlies between Singapore sides and a group of Canucks who came over looking for some warmth and a kick around.

Abdoulaye Djibril left Persiraja in Indonesia to join Jorg's revolution while former Rams defender Jerry Bartholomeusz followed his old boss to the Hougang.

But there was more to come as current internationals Noh Rahman and Fazrul Nawaz left Geylang United.

Sengkang Punggol have rarely hit the headlines even in the small world of Singapore football but a hectic pre season has raised the profile of this club from the north east of the island. Whether success follows remains to be seen but the Dolphins are giving it a go in 2009.


Indonesia v club sides

With Indonesia looking to play Manchester United in July I thought the time was right to list previous country v club friendlies.

Other clubs have been like AC Milan and Arsenal but they played club sides. But as you can see when compared to places like Thailand and South Korea, Indonesia has been sorely starved of foreign sides.

05/08 - Bayern Munchen 1-5 Jakarta
12/07 - Borussia Dortmund 0-1 Jakarta
07/04 - Kitchee 1-0 Hong Kong
03/04 - BEC Tero 0-0 Bangkok
10/00 - NAC Breda 1-7 Netherlands
10/00 - Drodrecht 1-4 Netherlands
10/00 - Vitesse Arnhem 2-4 Netherlands
08/00 - Instant Dict 1-1 Jakarta
07/99 - Tulevik Viljandi 0-3 Estonia
07/99 - Levadia 0-2 Estonia
06/96 - Sampdoria 2-1 Indonesia
1993 - FC Aarau 0-5 KL
1991 - Admira Wacker 0-2 KL
1988 - Hamburg 0-6 KL
06/82 - PSV 0-4 South Korea
1980 - Västerås SK 0-0
05/79 - Fiorentina 0-4 Japan
05/79 - Tottenham 0-6 Japan
09/78 - Sao Paolo U21 0-3 South Korea
06/75 - Ajax 1-4 Jakarta
06/75 - Manchester United 0-0 Jakarta


Quoc Khanh 1974

I have an interest in South East Asia that goes beyond football and when I came across this competition my interest was piqued. With much of what was known as Indo China engulfed in war the politics of this competition intrigue.

The US was at war with Laos but allied with South Vietnam and Thailand as well as Khmer. Just a few months after this was played Laos, South Vietnam and Khmer fell to communism.

And Persipura were in the final?! I'd love to see some pictures of all this!

1st-10th November 1974

Group A

1-11-1974 Laos v South Vietnam 0-1
2-11-1974 Malaysia v Laos 0-0
3-11-1974 Malaysia v Taiwan 0-0
5-11-1974 Laos v Taiwan 1-2, Malaysia v South Vietnam 0-1
7-11-1974 South Vietnam 1-1 Taiwan

1.South Vietnam 3 2 1 0 3- 1 5
2.Taiwan 3 1 2 0 3- 2 4
3.Malaysia 3 0 2 1 0- 1 2
4.Laos 3 0 1 2 1- 3 1

Group B

2-11-1974 Persipura v Khmer 3-1
3-11-1974 Thailand v Khmer 2-2
7-11-1974 Thailand v Persipura 1-1

1.Persipura 2 1 1 0 4- 2 3
2.Thailand 2 0 2 0 3- 3 2
3.Khmer 2 0 1 1 3- 5 1


9-11-1974 South Vietnam v Thailand 3-2, Persipura v Taiwan 2-0

Third Place Match

10-11-1974 Taiwan v Thailand 3-2


10-11-1974 South Vietnam v Persipura 2-0

NB: Persipura (Jayapura) played as representatives of the PSSI (FA of Indonesia)


Waiting for their Prince

Persitara host PSIS in the second leg of their 2nd round Copa Indonesia tie still unsure as to whether new signing Prince Kabir Bello can line up for them or not.

His ITC hasn't been recieved here and without it he can't join his team mates on the pitch. He is supposed to have left his former club, Iranian side Sepahan, last June, and certainly I met him in the second half of last year in Jakarta, so it's difficult to know what the delay.

Persitara go into this afternoon's game 1-0 down from the first leg but feeling confident they can defeat the Semarang side in their own compact Tugu Stadium.


Oman prepare for Indonesia

Indonesia go into tonight's Asian Cup qualifier against a nation buzzing after Oman won the Gulf Cup for the first time in their history. The Omanis defeated Saudi Arabia on penalties.

Will they be tired? Will they find Indonesia a bit of a come down? Catch the excitment here...if I can stay awake!


Copa Indonesia Top Scorers

6 Syamsul Arif (Persibo)
5 Pablo Frances (Persijap)
3 Dicky Firasat, Jimmy Suparno (Persela), Gaston Castano (PSIS), Varney Pas Boakay (Persibo), Germain Bationo (Mitra), Rachmat Afandi (PSMS), Yongky Ariwibowo (Persik)


Thai squad for King's Cup

The King's Cup kicks off Wednesday with Denmark facing North Korea and the Thais against Lebanon with the final on Saturday. According to Thai Football News this is the squad announced by Peter Reid.

Goalkeepers:Kosin Hathairattanakool (Chonburi, 45 caps, 0 goals) Kittisak Rawangpa (Osotsapa M-150, 43, 0) Sivaruck Tedsungnoen (BEC, 4, 0)

Defenders:Niweat Siriwong (BEC, 89, 3) Nattaporn Phanrit (Muang Thong Utd, 43, 2) Suree Sukha (Chonburi, 42, 2) Natthaphong Samana (Chonburi, 25, 1) Patiparn Phetphun (PEA, 12, 4) Cholratit Jantakam (Chonburi, 10, 0) Rangsan Viwatchaichok (PEA, 9, 0) Panupong Wongsa (PEA, 2, 0)

Midfielders:Datsakorn Thonglao (Hoang Anh Gia Lai, 58, 8) Sutee Sukomskit (Tampines Rovers, 58, 14) Pichitphong Choeichiu (KTB, 38, 2) Suchao Nutnum (TOT, 36, 5) Surat Sukha (Chonburi, 10, 0)Arthit Sunthornpit (Chonburi, 7, 2) Salahudin Arware (Muang Thong Utd, 4, 0)

Forwards:Teerasil Dangda (Muang Thong Utd, 23, 10) Ronnachai Rangsiyo (PEA, 10, 4) Anon Sangsanoi (BEC, 7, 2) Issarapong Lilakorn (Khon Kaen, 1, 0)


Copa Indonesia 18 January

Persela v Persema 1-0 8,000 (Jimmy Suparno)
Mitra Kukar v Persiba 0-2 6,000
Persires v Persib 0-1 8,000 (Nyeck Nyobe) Persib win 2-0 on agg
Persih v PSP 2-0 4,556 (Gallardo, Nsangue)


Indonesia v Australia and Australia Day in Jakarta

The Australian national football team, fondly known as the Socceroos, will be playing Indonesia in an Asian Cup qualifying clash on Wednesday evening, 28 January 2008. This is the first time the Socceroos have played in Jakarta for 25 years!
They will also be participating in a series of activities in Jakarta, starting with the 5th Annual Australia Day celebration at Mad Dogs Bar and Restaurant, Cilandak Commercial Estate, on Monday, 26 January, 2009, which also happens to be a Public Holiday in Indonesia.As the Official Pub for the Socceroos, Mad Dogs will be offering an All Day Aussie Buffet, which includes a full BBQ, Meat Pies, Lamingtons and more.
Early Bird Discount 15% if payment is made by Friday 23 January 2009
Socceroos representatives, including the legendary Graham Arnold, Henk Duut, Tony Franken and others will participate in the evening and will be available for autographs and photo opportunities, plus taking part in the football memorabilia Charity Auction. All proceeds will be Donated to Rotary Cilandak.
Mad Dogs will also feature a Lucky Draw and provide a Live band to continue the celebrations into the evening.

VIP tickets for the Big Game
A limited number of Australian fans will be able to sit together in the best, most comfortable and most secure seats in Bung Karno Stadium, Senayan, to watch the Socceroos’s historic game against Indonesia on the evening of Wednesday, 28 January.
Mad Dogs is the only place where the VIP tickets will be on sale prior to the day of the big match. By special arrangement through Football Dynamics Asia, the tickets are priced at only Rp.100,000 each or Rp.145,000 which includes ‘refreshing’ return coach transport between Cilandak Commercial Estate and the Stadium.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Copa Indonesia

PPSM v Persibo 0-3 (Syamsul Arif, Nurhidiyat, Abel Quioh) 0-9 on aggregate
Persebaya v Persiwa 3-0 6,808 (Jairon, Anang Ma'ruf. Purwanto) 3-2 on aggregate
Persiba v Persik 3-1 15,000 (Gonzalez, Setiawan, De Olivera) 3-1 on aggregate
Persikabo v Persikad 4-2 8,000 (Moraga 2, Pagbe, Santoni; Sodik, Hosen)
PSMS v PSPS 4-2 5,000 (Zada 3, Maniani; Epandi, Agus Pianto)

Persibo breeze through to the 3rd round after thumping PPSM 9-0 on aggregate with Syamsul Arif again on the score sheet. I saw the first half of the Persebaya game and they may have been missing Javier Roca but it was still a lot of fun. Timotius in goal for Persiwa was inspired especially first half but as a game of football it was good value and despite Timoius saving a penalty the home team were good value. Probably. Whatever, it was still an upset and a good star for new coach Arcan Iurie.


Persijap triumph

Persijap beat Persikab yesterday in the Copa Indonesia 2-1 but Persikab maybe in trouble for playing players who are on some kind of restricted list. Dunno all the ins and outs but in a nut shell Persikab are looking at being kicked out of the competition.

Greay quote from the Persijap coach after the game. Asked about one of Persikab's players he said that it wasn't till after the game that he was aware said player was Liberian and not Indonesian!


Malaysia v UAE ticket sales

Tickets go on sale at the Sepak Bola Stadium in Cheras in KL on 21 January from 11 am. Adults 10 RM, kids 5 RM.

The game will be held at the same stadium on the same day with kick off 8.45 apparently.

Recent clashes between the two sides thanks to Malaysian Football:

09/09/80 UAE v Malaysia 0-2 Asian Cup
12/09/81 Malaysia v UAE 0-1 Merdeka Cup
07/10/82 Malaysia v UAE 1-0 Merdeka Cup
21/06/07 Malaysia v UAE 1-3 Friendly


Singapore v Jordan ticket sales

SINGAPORE, 16 January 2009: Singapore will play Jordan in the final qualifying round of the AFC Asian Cup 2011 on 28 January at the National Stadium.
AFC Asian Cup 2011 - Final Qualification Round (Group E) Singapore vs Jordan Wednesday 28 January 2008, 7.30pm National Stadium, Singapore
Pre-sale of tickets will start from 20 to 23 January at the FAS office. Match day tickets will be sold at the National Stadium East and West Entrances from 5.30pm onwards.
20 to 22 Jan: FAS Office (12pm - 7pm)
23 Jan: FAS Office (9am to 1pm)
28 Jan: National Stadium East & West Entrances (5.30pm onwards)
Category S$
Grandstand 10.00
Gallery (Adult) 6.00
Gallery (Student / Senior Citizen)* 2.00
* Only applicable for secondary school, ITE & Junior College students with proof of valid concession passes; Senior Citizens must be 60 years and above as of 2009 with proof of identification)
^ FREE entry for primary school students and below (applicable for Gallery seating only; students must display valid concession passes for entry into stadium).

Friday, January 16, 2009


Indonesia beat Omani side

In their last warm up game before taking on Oman on Monday Indonesia beat local club side Al Shabab 3-2 with Bambang Pamungkas netting a couple and Budi Sudarsono the other.

Oh, and apparently it's cold there!

Fery Rotinsulu

Ricardo Salempessy Maman Abdurahman Charis Yulianto Isnan Ali

Firman Utina Ponaryo Astaman Hariono

Budi Sudarsono Bambang Pamungkas Boaz Solossa


Markus Horison replaced Fery 70'
Nova Arianto replaced Charis 71'
Erol Iba replaced Isnan 70'
Musafry replaced Bambang 70'


Copa Indonesia

PSIS v Persitara 1-0 18,125 (Firman Basuki)

No sign of Prince Bello for the Jakarta side who had a reasonable support follow them to Semarang for this 1st leg.

Two reds on 84' but I missed the second half. It was free beer you know...

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Jordan v Thailand 0-0

AMMAN - Thailand coach Peter Reid was satisfied to see his side open their 2011 AFC Asian Cup qualifying campaign with a hard-earned point following a goalless draw in Jordan. Both sides had chances to win the game at Amman International Stadium but it was the Thais who came closest to claiming the three points when Suchao Nutnum hit the post in the 28th minute.

It was a heartening result for the visitors following their AFF Suzuki Cup disappointment and Reid feels it set them up nicely for the rest of their Group E campaign.

"The draw is good for us because it's our first game and I hope that we can go all the way and qualify from the group to the finals," he said. "I'm happy with the result, especially as it was against a strong team who put plenty of pressure on us throughout the whole game.

"We tried to close the gaps all over the field and managed to hold on until the end." Jordan coach Nelo Vingada, on the other hand, was disappointed they could not convert their dominance into goals.

"I'm not happy as a coach and the players are also not happy with the result," said the Portuguese boss. "We wanted to win for our fans, who are waiting a victory from us. We wanted to have a good start in the qualifiers and a win could have been good for us.

"We did everything to score a goal but things didn't go our way and we were not very lucky. "We played with two clear strikers and we created a lot of chances but the final touch was missing," he added.

"The players produced a fighting performance and they managed to get the ball back but we just couldn't score."

"We were clearly the best in the game and our opponents tried to score from quick counter-attacks but our goalkeeper and defenders stopped them from doing so."


Iran v Singapore 6-0

Lions succumb to Iran
TEHRAN, 15 January 2009: Singapore's AFC Asian Cup 2011 qualification campaign suffered a rocky start as Group E favourites Iran claimed a comprehensive 6-0 victory at the Azadi Stadium.
Radojko Avramovic's side had started the game well, keeping a tight leash on the Iranians with a compact team setup that limited the hosts to long shots for much of the first half.

But the game took a dramatic turn in the 40th minute, when Ismail Yunos was shown the straight red card for a tackle from behind on midfielder Reza Khalatbari.

The Lions were still smarting from the right back's ejection when Majid Gholamnejad broke the deadlock three minutes later by latching on to a deflected clearance by Precious Emuejeraye before firing a powerful shot from the edge of the box that gave Lionel Lewis no chance.

Encouraged by the opening goal, Ali Daei's side, swarmed forward looking for another goal before the half time whistle and went close with Arash Borhani and Karim Bagheri but Singapore keeper was on hand to deny them further ahead before halftime.

However, within ten minutes of the restart the Iranians were 3-0 up. Skipper Bagheri tapped home from six yards out with a simple finish in the 52nd minute before Gholamreza Rezaei got onto the scoresheet himself after a neat lay off from Borhani a couple of minutes later.

Singapore valiantly rallied in an effort to stay in the game, but the three-time Asian Cup winners proved too strong as Maziar Zareh, given plenty of space outside the penalty area, rifled home a shot that narrowly eluded Lewis for the Iranians’ fourth.

Substitute Mohamad Nouri added two more within a span of two minutes late in the game to wrap up an emphatic win for the Iranians.

"This was a very heavy defeat for us but we played very well in the first half. Until the sending off, we were very organised and compact. We did not let them play,’ said coach Avramovic.

"But things were very difficult in the second half as we had one man down and against a good team like Iran, this makes a very big difference.

"They also had very physical and tall players and they took advantage of that as we had difficulty in dealing with their crosses," he added.

"I did not see the will in my players when we had possession of the ball. We defended well, especially in the first half, but when we got the ball we didn’t know what to do with it. None of the players wanted to get the ball and start an attack.

The Iranians pressed us and they constantly won the ball and we kept losing balls in places we shouldn’t have and this is one of the reasons why we lost this game,’ concluded Avramovic.

Line-up: Lionel Lewis (GK), Ismail Yunos, Baihakki Khaizan, Precious Emuejeraye, Daniel Bennett, Shahril Ishak (Juma'at Jantan 57'), Fahrudin Mustafic, Isa Halim, John Wilkinson (Agu Casmir 67'), Noh Alam Shah, Indra Sahdan (Ridhuan Muhammad 46')
Subs not used: Hassan Sunny, Shaiful Esah, Rosman Sulaiman, Mustaqim Manzur

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Persib v Persires

Persib Bandung mirrored perfectly the national team in the first half of this Copa Indonesia 2nd round 1st leg tie. Prompted by Lorenzo Cabanas they had chance after chance but just couldn't score as they hit the post, hit it wide and just didn't hit the bloody ball.

They finally took the lead on 55' with a penalty. Bastos was felled by the keeper and after the usual futile protests Cabanas sent the keeper the wrong way to make it 1-0.

Last minute of injury time and Airlangga Suciptio made it 2-0.


The Mancs are coming

United will play four matches in Asia this summer:
China - Date, city to be confirmed
Korea - 20 July, Seoul
Indonesia - 24 July, Jakarta v ISL Select
Malaysia - 26 July, Kuala Lumpur

Tour dates provisional, subject to local & English FA confirmation.

COMMENT - Indonesia will be holding presidential elections sometime in July I think...also the FA here would prefer United to play the national side rather than a select XI as part of their Asian Cup qualification warm up


Belgian groundhopper does KL!

A few weeks back I was contacted by a Belgian guy who would be travelling in this region and fancied taking in a couple of games while he was here. There were two legs to his journey, sitting on a beach in Bali is doesn't count (!), in KL and Jakarta.

Unfortunately he will probably miss out on any games in Jakarta, though I understand Persija may be playing Pelita Jaya in a friendly on 21 January Pat, but he managed to see a scouple in KL.

First up was Felda United at home to Johore in the Malaysia Premier League while last night he went to see My Team go down 1-0 at home to Pahang.

Pat's Comment - Went yesterday to My team FC, they were the better team with some good chances but a nice counter of Pahang but the 0-1 score on the board. They deserved better, My Team even missed a penalty and a header on the crossbar. Was surprised by the low interest at both games 200 and 300 spectators I think.


Malaysian squad for Asian Cup qualifying training

Goalkeeper: Syed Adney Syed Hussein (UPB My Team), Farizal Marlias (Perlis), Mohd Syamsuri Mustaffa (T-Team Terengganu)

Defence: Mohd Fauzie Bin Nan (Perlis), Thirumurugan Veeran (Kedah), Shafizan Hashim (Kedah), S. Subramaniam (Perak), Norhafiz Zamani Misbah (KL Plus), Mohd Aidil Zafuan Abd Razak (Negeri Sembilan), Mohd Daudsu Jamaludin (Kelantan), Mohd Marzuki Yusof (Terengganu), Rosdi Talib (T-Team Terengganu),

Midfield: Badrul Bin Baktiar (Kedah), Mohd Hardi Jaafar (Selangor), Mohd Amirulhadi Zainal (Selangor), Kaironnizam Sahabudin Husain (UPB My Team), Muhammad Shukor Adan (Negeri Sembilan), Hairuddin Omar (T-Team Terengganu)

Strikers: Mohd Khyril Muhymeen Zambri (Kedah), Nizaruddin Yusof (Perlis), Mohd Safee Sali (Selangor), Mohd Fadzli Shaari (KL Plus), Norsharul Idlan Yahala (UPB My Team), Mohd Zaquan Adha Abd Razak (Negeri Sembilan), Indraputra Mahayuddin (Kelantan), Norfarhan Mohamad (Kelantan), Mohd Ashari Samsuddin (Terengganu)

Malaysia play UAE 21 January at MBPJ Stadium


Selangor slip up while Kedah still struggle

Negeri Sembilan v Perak 3-0
Johor v Selangor 2-1
Perlis v Kedah 1-0
KL Plus v Penang 3-1
My Team v Pahang 0-1
Kuala Muda v Terengganu 1-0
PDRM v Kelantan 2-4

1 - KL Plus 4 4 0 0 10-3 12
2 - Selangor 4 3 0 1 11-4 9
3 - Negeri Sembilan 4 3 0 1 9-6 9
4 - Kelantan 4 3 0 1 10-8 9
5 - Perlis 4 3 0 1 7-5 9

The MSL now takes a break till next month for Asian Cup qualifiers and the 1st round of the FA Cup


Copa Indonesia 2nd round 1st leg

Persibo v PPSM 6-0 20,000 (Iswandi, Varney Pas Boakay 2, Syamsul Arif 2, Arif Kurniawan)
Persiwa v Persebaya 2-0 7,000 (Mamgbrasar, Romaropen)
PSP v Persih 1-0 2,000 (Zaenal Fanini)
Persik v Persiba Bantul 1-0 8,000 (!) (Saktiawan)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Long road for KL Plus

PETALING JAYA: Super League newcomers KL Plus FC are feeling the heat in the fast lane.
But they have coped well with it early on in the season to tag themselves as the surprise package in the 14-team competition. The squad under former Kuala Lumpur coach Mat Zan Mat Aris have full points from three matches thus far and they are in second place in the standings behind Selangor on goal difference.
“It’s a good start for my boys but it is just the beginning and we have a long way to go ahead,” said Mat Zan.
Team manager Husni Mohd Yusof said that playing in the top flight was a different ball game for KL Plus, who had competed in the lower Premier League for two seasons.
“Yes, we have got off to a strong start but the task to maintain it will certainly get more difficult,” said Husni.
KL Plus won their opening away game against Kelantan on Jan 3 by default. They were awarded three points and a 3-0 win because the FA of Malaysia (FAM) ruled that the hosts did not make proper preparations on the venue to stage the match.
In the next match, KL Plus edged Terengganu 2-1 and they returned with full points from Kuantan on Saturday after edging Pahang 1-0.
In their debut season in the M-League in 2006-07, KL Plus finished at the bottom of the Premier League but bounced back the following season to win promotion to the Super League as the runners-up to Kuala Muda Naza.
Mat Zan has only two national players in his side — centreback Norhafiz Zamani Misbah (pic) and leftback Irwan Fadli Idrus.
Among the other notable players in the team are Bobby Gonzales, Amir Shahreen Mubin, Mohd Fadzli Saari, Reshafiq Alwi, Shafiq Rahim, Ramesh Lai and Mohd Lot Abdullah.
KL Plus will aim to extend their winning run tonight against Penang at the KL Football Stadium in Cheras.


Persik v Persiba Bantul 1-0

There's never a dull moment watching Persik Kediri. Indonesian football's very own Haarlem Globetrotters have been having a hard time of late with coach Arcan Iurie, goalie Markus Horison and midfielder Danilo Fernando already gone. Budi Sudarsono is also keen to leave the East Javan side while striker Christian Gonzales is suspended for 12 months.

But new coach Aji Santoso is still able to field players like Ahmad Kurniawan, Hamkah Hamza, Ronald Fagundez and striker Saktiawan Sinaga as well as fielding promising young striker Yongky.

It was the former PSMS striker Saktiawan who gave the home side the lead with a delicate chip with the outside of his boot and moments later Hamza ghosted in at the back stick to make it 2-0 but the goal was disallowed by the linesman.

A healthy crowd shows the Persik fans are keeping the faith despite the money troubles while on the field Aji Santoso is sticking to the champagne football that has brought the side so much success in recent years.

The start of the second half sees some sustained pressure from the visitors but three or four times in three or four minutes keeper Ahmad Kurniawan is called upon to make vital saves.

Last minute and Persiba looked to have snatched a surprise draw but Kurniawan saved his team again.


Singapore to impose tough new regulations on fans

Following on from the crowd trouble that marred the recent AFF Cup semi final between Singapore and Vietnam I understand the Singapore authorities have been looking at ways to ensure the scenes are not repeated. In addition they have been looking at how they cam encourage more fans through the turnstiles at SLeague games.

The SLeague are very concerned about domestic attendances and are looking to introduce a number of measures next season to both improve the atmosphere inside the stadium as well as put more bums on seats. ‘Value for money’ is the key says one anonymous official while at the same time maximizing match day income.

Players have long complained about seeing fans wearing replica shirts of non Singaporean teams and the SLeague is set to crack down hard on this. One leading player said ‘it’s insulting when you run out on the pitch and see spectators wearing Chelsea or Manchester United shirts. It’s demoralizing.’

And it’s a sentiment echoed throughout the corridors of power.

Yusuf bin Kidin is a football consultant and he has been heavily involved in the talks that have centred on the path Singapore football needs to take in the future.

‘Plain and simple,’ he told me, ‘we need fans in the stadiums. But we need fans that contribute to the development of the game of football. Not just a bunch of moaning ninnies who get upset when they lose money.’

'We want to work closely with the young fans who come to games and write about games. We want to identify new fans and generate a new fan culture in Singapore and if that means taking ideas from other countries then so be it. But we're still Singapore and any new ideas will have a uniquely Singaporean twist.'

From next season spectators seeking to enter domestic games in Singapore will be required to pay a surcharge if they are sporting a non Singaporean football shirt or they will be refused admittance. ‘You don’t go to see Liverpool and see fans wearing Home United shirts do you?’ said my source. ‘We want to encourage a new breed of fan proud to support their local side. Forget the EPL, support Geylang or Gombak.’

The move is likely to meet resistance from the fans but authorities are unrepentant. ‘Why should we be ashamed of what’s on our doorstep. People can still support other teams, they can still go to London or Milan or whatever. But in Singapore we ask they put the local game first.’

At least one fan contacted me to express his virulent opposition to the proposed move. ‘It’s stupid lah.’

The league also has its eyes on supporter’s clubs. After watching a couple of games in Indonesia my source told me to expect a wholesale revamp. ‘These supporters clubs are too molly coddled. They get cheap tickets, sit down, eat chicken rice and send text messages to their mates while ignoring the game. Why we give them subsidy?’

Before the next season the league are looking to bring over some representatives of Indonesian supporters clubs and have them give workshops on how fans can do their bit to improve the atmosphere. One spectator isn’t convinced. ‘Not good lah. I get driven to the game, I get told to stand up, sit down, get given song sheets and food lah, why change?’

Why change indeed? Maybe because, as one player told me, the atmosphere at Singaporean games sucks?

The workshops will include presentations and movies where local fans will be shown how fans overseas can generate an atmosphere that doesn’t sound rehearsed. ‘If someone doesn’t tell me when to cheer, how will I know?’ asked one concerned fan.

My source is adamant. ‘We want to create an atmosphere inside stadiums here like we had in the Malaysia Cup days.’

One way to achieve this is the League will start branding certain fixtures. Tampines v Geylang United will be the East Coast Derby and will be promoted as such in local media. ‘Enough politeness in our stadiums, we want more venom,’ my source explained.

Members of the local Celtic and Rangers supporters clubs will be invited to give talks to the fans of different clubs where local supporters will be encouraged to engage in mindless hatred and bigotry during the football match. ‘When there’s a better atmosphere on the terraces more fans will come.’

Geylang fans were nonplussed with one asking ‘what’s a derby?’

The FA and clubs are looking into schemes where fans who buy their tickets in advance will get a discount. ‘Clubs need cash flow so it makes sense to have revenue trickling in nearly every day and not just on matchdays. Why not reward fans if they commit themselves before the game?’

There will also be no more free tickets for fans. ‘Football is a business. At the moment we have people who go to every game saying they support Singapore football but they demand free tickets. That’s not supporting the local game. That’s sad. If they want to support the game, buy tickets, bring friends but don’t just turn up at the stadium and say look at me. I’m a friend of football. Let me in free.’

If they don’t want to buy tickets there is another option. ‘The crowd trouble in the Vietnam game really embarrassed Singapore and we hope to never have to witness that sort of behaviour again. If these regular fans don’t want to buy tickets for games they can still get in free. They can become matchday stewards. With their unparalleled knowledge of the game and culture locally they will be a great help in ensuring spectator’s safety at matches.’

Fan X isn’t so keen on the excited. ‘Wah, dangerous lah. Maybe get hit by people. Not fair. You know, when nobody goes to games I always turn up and bus fare expensive lah. If must buy ticket as well better stay home lah.’

There is much work to be done off the field to improve the atmosphere inside SLeague stadiums but at least these proposals show football in Lion City is heading in the right direction.


Indonesia look to SEA Games

The Indonesia FA (PSSI) have decided to send their soon-to-be-formed Under-19 squad to Uruguay in preparation for the SEA Games 2009 which Laos will be hosting at the end of the year.
At a recent meeting, the PSSI announced that after the selection process with potential players from the Under-19 squad, the team will then be send for attachments with various Uruguayan clubs.
“Up to this point, the PSSI have already selected 19 players from the U19 squad although only five players have met the requirement of being at least 180cm tall,” said Mafirion, an Exco member of PSSI.
The selected players who are sent to Uruguay will play in their age-group league competition until August before returning to Jakarta in preparation for the AFC Under-19 qualifiers prior to the SEA Games.
From there, the best players will then be brought into the squad which will feature the best Under-23 players from the Djarum Super League or the Esia Main Division League.
“So the squad for the SEA Games will comprise of the best players from the U19 and also those from the U23,” added Mafirion.

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