Friday, July 31, 2009


Selangor Cup

Selangor v Persib 2-0 (Bambang Pamungkas 2)

Dunno how true it is mind...two first half goals by Indonesian striker, guesting for his former club, gave the hosts yet another trophy in a bumper season for them.

Oh the delicious irony. A Malaysian club side defeats an Indonesian club side with two goals from an Indonesian icon who is synonymous with the Indonesian side's bitterest rivals, Persija.

For those counting Selangor have now won the MSL, FA Cup, Charity Shield and the Selangor Cup


Been wondering about Nwokolo?

I guess the former Persija striker failed his trials in Europe. Now his agent is bigging up his move to Sriwijaya despite earlier reports that indicated the Copa winners already had their three foreigners. If a move to Palembang fails there's always Persiba...

But then this story has Anoure Obiora being replaced by Persija's central defender Herman Abanda saying it's difficult to find Asian players?

Confusing eh?


Bulls held

Geylang United v Gombak United 1-1 (Haruki Seto; Goran Subara) 1,671


Aussie Memories

The fall out from the Kop Comes to Asia continues but I've lost interest now. It's good that there is a debate going on about England fan waving Singaporeans mocking the efforts of their own lads but to put it into a wider context...

...about 20 years agon I went to see Australia play Hajduk Split at the Parramatta Stadium in Sydney. The Aussies won 1-0 with a 30 yard drive in the first couple of minutes, how do I remember all this shite?

The other thing I remember is that in a crowd of about 10,500 the number of Aussies could probably have been counted on a full set of limbs. Pre Balkan break up this was a Croatian party hosted by Croatians. Only the venue was Australian.

Croatian flags, Croatian dancers, Croatian men pissing made in Croatia piss.

I was with the very small number of Aussie fans in the stadium that night and boy it wasn't pleasant. It wasn't often I felt sorry for the buggers in the sporting world but I did that night as the home team was booed in their own country.

Now of course football is trendy down under and has its very own painted faces and inflatable 'roos. Which just goes to show how things can change.

Maybe in 20 years time Liverpool will come to the National Stadium, they'll still be discussing the Sports Hub, and the whole stadium will be full of inflated merlions and banners saying 'Welcome to our Fine country'.


Indonesian football news - you decide!

Elie Aiboy was confirmed signed with IPL side Pro Duta a couple of weeks back. Now today comes a story that Persib may have a natter with him while they are in Malaysia for tonight's friendly between Selangor and Persib. Indonesian international Aiboy played half of last season with the Malaysians and half with PSMS.

Yesterday it was gleefully announced that Indonesia would cancel all upcoming friendlies for their national team and coach Benny Dollo was quoted as agreeing, saying they weren't necessary as they were planning a training camp anyway. Today they are talking about playing Syria and trying to find more opponents, prioritising what the call Central Asia tho I think they mean the Middle East...


The Kop Comes to Asia - and the complaints flood in

THE Football Association of Singapore (FAS) said last night that it was "shocked and disappointed" with the organisers of the Liverpool visit.

In my view, this pretty much sums up how many football fans feel since Liverpool mauled the Lions 5-0 at the National Stadium. Not because the national team lost, but because of the lack of respect shown to the host nation and its fans.

And most certainly, not by Carragher, Torres, Alonso or any of the Reds. But by the event promoters.Citing a couple of breaches to their agreement with Strategic Sports Investments, an arm of the Profitable Group, as well as several "other issues that have been brought to our attention", the FAS said in a strongly worded statement that it would "take up the matter with the promoters".

In fact, the FAS warned bluntly that "appropriate actions" would be taken.And rightly so, I say.One of the biggest bones of contention during the match at the National Stadium was over why the national anthem was not played yet Liverpool's famous You'll Never Walk Alone received airtime twice before kick-off, even as the guest-of-honour, President S R Nathan, was on the pitch.

The FAS said last night: "Since this match was not an 'A' international match played between two national teams, FAS and the promoters had agreed that the Singapore national anthem and the Liverpool club 'anthem' would not be played as part of the official match ceremony.

"We were shocked and disappointed when this agreement was breached when the Liverpool anthem was played immediately after the introduction of our guest-of-honour to the two teams."I was there at the National Stadium and I was among those who were surprised, and even disappointed, that the Majulah Singapura was not played.

Sure it was not an "A" international, but it was at the National Stadium, it was the national team, it was a largely Singaporean crowd and the head of state was the guest of honour. The Majulah Singapura would have united the crowd and motivated Radojko Avramovic's men.

The FAS also took issue with the promoters for failing to "give fair coverage and support to the Lions during the pre-match segments". As for the other issues brought to the attention of the FAS: I know of an ugly incident at the VIP stand involving the promoters and was told of another involving their security personnel behaving unprofessionally.

While Liverpool entertained the 50,000-strong crowd at the stadium, I'm afraid Strategic Sports Investment have disappointed many of them.


Albirex thump Tampines!

Albirex Niigata v Tampines Rovers 3-0 (Kenji Adachihara, Ryota Kobayashi, Akira Takase) 1,506

Woodlands Welington v Sengkang Punggol 0-0 1,167

Tampines Rovers second defeat of the season couldn't have come at a worse time of the season, sitting five points behind leaders SAF who they meet on Sunday. Against the inconsistent Japanese side they were wthout Noh Alam Shah and on 45' lost Riduan Mohamed to a red card.

Worryingly the Stags are just three points ahead of Gombak United who take on Geylang United tonight.


Sriwijaya keep strengthening

Rahmad Darmawan continues to add to his Sriwijaya squad while the rest of the ISL wonder who will be coaching them next season.

He recently signed former Persiter and Persitara striker Rahmad Rivai and has now brought in experienced former national team keeper Hendro Kartiko from Persija.

An stute signing given that the Copa winners maybe withut first choice Ferry Rotinsulu for the opening weeks of the season on international duty.

Thursday, July 30, 2009


Selangor Cup

Tomorrow night sees the Selangor Cup played out between Selangor, obviously, and Persib Bandung at the Shah Alam Stadium in, um, Selangor. Obviously.

Officials are anticipating a crowd of 40,000 to fill the cavernous arena between two of South East Asia's biggest sides. Tickets are still available and cost 10 Ringitt

For Selangor fans they will welcome back
Bambang Pamungkas , wearing his usual number 20 shirt, who had a memorable spell with the Red Giants a few years back, leading them to a domestic treble and netting something like 40 goals in one season. Also putting in a guest appearance will be Elie Aiboy, another Indonesian international who recently signed for Pro Duta in the IPL.

If the game is all square after 90 minutes, extra time will be played and if still no winner then it will go to penalties.

Busy day for the visiting Persib players today. They have an official reception with the Indonesian ambassador this afternoon followed by a training session in the early evening at the Shah Alam Stadium. Then everyone gets together for a Selangor/Persib nosebag along with various dignitaries.


SLeague Comings and Goings

Albirex Niigata
In: Kazuki Yoshino, Naoya Kudo, Kohsuke Watanabe, Jun Kochi Out: Keisuke Ogawa, Shunsuke Sunaga, Takasuke Goto, Kenta Shinto

Balestier Khalsa
In: Oh Ddog Yi, Jun Jin, Oh In Kyun (all S.League), Shahrul Hamid, Arif Aiman, Jamie Alan Pitt, Safwan Ramlan (all Prime League)
Out: Mushthafa Kamal, Ednardo Moura, Seth Galloway, Ithamar Rangel (all S.League), Bryan Soane, Faliq Sudhir, Fadzly Shah Jahan (all Prime League)

In: Drazen Govic
Out: Oh Ddog Yi

Geylang United
In: Kim Jae Hong, Adrian Dhanaraj (all S.League), Masnashzreen Masturi (Prime League)
Out: Rickey Harris (S.League), Lloyd Butler, Wahyudi Abdul Wahid, Fazli Ayob (all Prime League)

Gombak United
In: Hamqaamal Shah, Fazrul Nawaz (all S.League)
Out: Gay Jian Hui (Prime League)

Home United
In: Ham Hyeong Gyu (S.League), Kairuldin Ishak (Prime League)
Out: Norikazu Murakami (S.League), Nurhilmi Jasni (Prime League)

Sengkang Punggol
In: Darrel Tan (Prime League)
Out: Winston Yap (S.League)

Singapore Armed Forces
In: Lloyd Butler, Mir Iszunaidi Sukadi, Hafsyar Farkhan Hashim, Rahim As’ari, Khair Azman (all Prime League)
Out: Shafiq Wari, Hafiz Zubir, Faizal Hendra, Ridduan Shukor, Maziz Abdul Rahman (all Prime League)

Super Reds
In: Seo Su Jong, Chang Jo Yoon, Kim Jong Hyeon
Out: Back Dae Hyuen, Shin Seung Ki

Tampines Rovers
In: Nurhilmi Jasni, Rabbani Sudalman (all Prime League)
Out: Fazil Zailani, Safwan Ramlan (all Prime League)

Woodlands Wellington
In: Kamarul Sobhir, Terry Lee (all Prime League)
Out: J. Kalaiselvan (S.League), Ng Choon Kiat, Madhu Mohana, Omar Ismail, Fauzi Yusoff (all Prime League).

Young Lions
In: Fazli Ayob, Madhu Mohana, Nazrul Ahmad Nazari, Safuwan Baharudin, Raihan Abdul Rahman, Khalili D’Cruz
Out: Rahim As’ari, Hamqaamal Shah, K. Sivaseshan, Rabbani Sudalman, Erwan Gunawan, Arif Aiman, Azfar Zainal Abidin

Taken from


Mardiansyah moves

Odd one this. While the ISL clubs run round looking for that elusive striker that will net them 20 goals a season Mardiansyah has quietly moved to pastures new.

Mardiansyah was the Premier League's top scorer last season hitting 15 goals as he led his side Persikabo to a top four place unfortunately falling at the play off hurdle.

Now comes a report he has signed for Persikad. Another Premier League side, they finished in the bottom half of the table last time round, 16 points behind Persikabo.

I don't know much about Mardiansyah. His age, his background. But odd that someone who was so prolific last season should not have a queue of suitors knocking down his door.

Then again neither did Marcio Souza (Persela).


Sriwijaya line up Malaysian friendly

Copa winners Sriwijaya are looking to play a friendly against Malaysian Super League side Perlis in Palembang on 18th August. It will be part of the Malaysians preperations for the upcoming Malaysia Cup which starts a few weeks later.

Meanwhile a club v country row could be boiling in Indonesia after the FA cancelled the friendlies arranged for August against China, Malaysia, Syria and Saudi Arabia. Instead they will call the players back to prepare for the Asian Cup qualifiers, Kuwait home and away, at the end of September and will not release players until those games are over.

Likewise the Under 23s will not be available for their clubs until after the SEA Games in December!

It is hoped to start the ISL in October so we could see big clubs like Persipura and Sriwijaya without their big names for three months and guess what? They ain't happy.

This happens every year. The domestic league season plays second fiddle to the international team and the season gets decimated with lengthy breaks for lengthy training camps. This time round it isn't clear whether or not the whole league will be put on hold while the national teams train. Bloody hope not.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009



Home United v Super Reds (Peres De Oliveira; Park Kang Jin, Yu Hyun Koo) 649
SAF v DPMM 0-0 3,091

Well how about that? SAF's first draw of the season puts them five points ahead of 2nd placed Tampines Rovers ahead of Sunday's crucial clash between the heavyweights. Before then is the small matter of the Stags heading west to take on Albirex Niigata; always a tricky proposition with their swift, free flowing football.

Victory for Noh Alam Shah and his men tonight would see them two points behind SAF going into Sunday's game at Tampines Stadium and the pressure would be on SAF to take something from the cauldron.

Anything less than three points and Richard Bok will be breathing a little easier knowing he still has a reasonable cushion ahead of Tampines.


Singapore Cup Quarter Final Draw

Singapore Cup Quarter Final Fixtures

Wednesday 26 August
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
Time: 7.45pm

Friday 28 August
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
Time: 7.30pm –‘LIVE’ on MediaCorp Channel 5

Sunday 30 August
Venue: Bedok Stadium
Time: 7.45pm

Monday 31 August
Venue: Jurong West Stadium
Time: 7.45pm

Tuesday 1 September
Venue: Tampines Stadium
Time: 7.45pm

Wednesday 2 September
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
Time: 7.45pm

Thursday 3 September
Venue: Clementi Stadium
Time: 7.45pm

Friday 4 September
Venue: Jurong East Stadium
Time: 7.30pm –‘LIVE’ on MediaCorp Channel 5


Who's the best team in the SLeague?

While Singaporeans continue to analyse their defeat by Liverpool and question the future of the game, check out threads on Kallang Roar and HWZ, there is the small matter of the SLeague to be addressed. And Sunday night sees Tampines Rovers v Singapore Armed Forces at the Tampines Stadium.

If this was the EPL then Football fans in Lion City would have been fed a non stop diet of analysis and views on TV, in newspapers and on the internet. Commercials would be screened called the day Showdown Sunday. We'd be seeing loads of pictures of Noh Alam Shah looking mean and moody, perhaps with a new hair style.

There would be analysis of past incidents between NAS and SAF defender Daniel Bennett as media try to cover every angle and then some.

The papers would be full of graphics showing how past games have been won and lost. We'd have comments by experts and non experts alike. Coffee shops across the island would be full and fans would be advised to arrive early to get the best seats.

If this was the EPL.

But it ain't. It's some poncey local shit that is deemed unworthy of attention by 99% of Singaporeans. Too many foreigners (how many English in the Liverpool side?), no famous players (?), low quality football (oh really?)

Low quality football eh? I wonder if the folk that repeat this mantra have ever been to a game.

Watch a DVD of Albirex Niigata v Gombak United. As good a game as you're gonna see anywhere. Or Albirex Niigata v SAF, described by commentator Dez Corkhill as the best game he'd seen all season.

There is quality football and it can be found in people's own neighbourhoods.

No guarantee of course that Tampines v SAF is going to be a classic. Think of the hype surrounding games in England and how often does the reality come close to the hyperbole. Rarely. But still people watch.

Victory for Tampines could put them a point behind the leaders and back to back champions (depending on mid week games) while three points for Richard Bok's men, left with only the SLeague to play for, could give them breathing space at the top.

Now is the time to put the pointless Liverpool game to bed and concentrate on the real issues.


Thai media blasts Liverpool visit


Liverpool will never walk alone but they probably have more "enemies" here in Thailand following their visit to Bangkok last week.

While several Reds followers still have a vivid memory of watching their beloved football club draw 1-1 with their national team at Rajamangala National Stadium last Wednesday, a large number of fans and journalists are still complaining about the trip.

It was one of the most chaotic and controversial visits by a European football club. Some critics said it was fortunate that Liverpool were just runners-up in the English Premier League and the situation could have been worse had they been champions.

Understandably, many Liverpool players are millionaires who should receive protection anywhere they go. But security for their Bangkok trip was so tight that in the eyes of many it was over the top.

It was reported in the Thai press that a kid, who is around four or five years old, was pushed by a security guard and fell as she was trying to get closer to Liverpool players when they visited the Grand Palace.

I do not blame Liverpool but the organisers. The company that organised Liverpool's Asia trip was Britain's Profitable Group. The Reds' other destination on the tour was Singapore.

The company acted like an amateur. There were very few press releases from the firm in the run-up to the game. They did not care much about promoting the match probably because tickets had been sold out.

Popular football writer "Jackie", a Liverpool fan, wrote in his column in Star Soccer that Liverpool were far behind the likes of Manchester United, Real Madrid and Chelsea in terms of marketing and promoting their image.

It's a pity that they did not have a "professional" organiser to help increase the club's value, he said.

"The tour was handled by conservative people who only thought about playing football and selling tickets," Jackie wrote.

The organisers were happy because the stadium was packed and they were not making a loss. But the club lost part of their image as it was difficult for fans to reach the players, he said.

"One of the company's directors is a former Liverpool player. May I ask if you have a vision," he wrote.

"I am thinking about sending a letter to the club's PR director that next time when they come to Asia they should hire a company which is capable of making the club look great. They should not come just to play football and take a small amount of money home."

A Thai Rath reporter who wrote under the pen name "Power Bomb" pulled no punches against the organisers.

"As a journalist who covered Liverpool's visit, I saw several things that I had not thought that I would see," he wrote in his column.

"And the one to blame was that company. They tried to work like professionals while in fact they were not!"

The organisers might have known a long time ago that Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard, their most popular player among Reds fans here, would not be able to join the Asia trip.

In his absence, the club or the organisers should have made striker Fernando Torres the star of the Bangkok trip.

As it turned out, the Spain international did not take part in any promotional event or press conference. All he did was visit the Grand Palace and play a few minutes.

Surprisingly, I saw on TV that when Liverpool were in Singapore, Torres attended a press conference and fans were allowed to seek his autograph and hug the popular forward.

This was probably because the firm's head office in Asia is in Singapore or the organisers thought Thailand was a dangerous place.

Liverpool commercial director Ian Ayre insisted on several occasions that the trip was not about making money but more about giving their fans a chance to see the players in the flesh. But after their visit to Thailand, one could be forgiven for thinking otherwise.

Hopefully, Liverpool and the company have learned a few lessons from the Bangkok trip and will make things right when the Reds come next time.

COMMENT - first Singapore and now Thailand. Of course these tours are purely commercial and to suggest otherwise is nonsense. But then again what do the media expect? 24/7 access to the players? Cos that ain't gonna happen is it? It's unfortunate that much of the media coverage of the game revolves around individuals and not the team, encouraging fans to 'believe' in certain players at the expense of others in the squad. Yes, have a pop at the organisers but also perhaps the media should look at themselves. In their quest for copy perhaps they raised expectations to an impossible level?


Bulls end Tigers win streak

Gombak United v Balestier Khalsa 2-1 (Obatola 2; Oh Ddog Yi) 2,013


Thais in Indonesia

Wasan Sankpurn Persik 2005
Jetsada Jitsawad Persibat 2005
Sakda Joemdee Persibat 2005
Tanasit Thong In PSS 2005
Anucha Chausri Mojokerto Putra 2005
Phaitoon Thiabma Persijap 2006-2009
Manit Noyvach Persijap 2006
Kosin Hathairattanakul Persib 2006
Worawut Wangsawat Persikab 2007

Taken from Top Skor. Kosin is by far the highest profile Thai to have played here and is fondly remembered by the Persib fans. I also understand he would not mind coming back. Phaitoon has been here the longest while most of the rest did their thing at lower division clubs.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Free Scoring Hariss

Hariss Harun (born 19 November 1990) is a Singaporean footballer and plays for S-League team, Young Lions as a central midfielder. He is S.League's and also the national team's youngest ever player, playing at the age of 16.

Football career
24 June 2007, only 16 years 7 months and 5 days old (16 years and 217 days old), Harun became the youngest ever player to don the national jersey as he came on in the second half in a friendly against North Korea. He currently have 53 international caps to his name, starting in all Singapore international matches for the past 2 years. In his 53 caps, he scored an amazing 26 goals for Singapore and had 31 assist.

He is known as a hard-tackling player, and he has been booked and sent off quite a number of times, most notably during the friendly with the Singapore Under-23 side against
He was part of the
Singapore Under-23 team that took part in the 2007 Southeast Asian Games in Korat, Thailand that won a bronze medal.

In August 2007, he was Singapore's winner of Nike's Who's The Next contest, and secured a training stint at
Barcelona's famed academy, La Masia. He trained at the Catalans' youth academy for a week, with 13 other players from six Asia Pacific countries including Korea and Japan. The youngsters participated in three friendly games against players from Barca's youth academy, where he was selected captain for all the games. He returned a week later with the MVP award.[1]

After his outstanding performance in the match between Singapore and Liverpool, he has attracted interest from many English clubs. These clubs include Arsenal and Leeds United.[citation needed]

COMMENT - it's on Wikipedia, it must be true!!!


Plugging the SLeague talent drain

The close season isn't my favourite time of the year. Stories switch from on the field to off it and often come through second or third hand sources. With no action people have to elsewhere for their fix and of course that means gossip.

Hardly a day goes by without one of the Indonesian sports tabloids linking a Singaporean or Thai with clubs here. The Greg Nwokolo saga is lasting longer than Ken Barlow in Coronation Street.

To be fair people in the game take much of the hype/gossip with a pinch of salt. It's part and parcel of the game and like politicians there are players, coaches and agents who love being the centre of attention.

With the Indonesian FA adopting 3+2 (three foreigners + 2 Asians) it's only natural the media start scampering about looking for Asian players who maybe able to adopt to the rough n tumble world of Indonesian football. And Singapore is the logical place to look.

But seriously how many Singapore players would come here? To be negative they would get the shit kicked out of them on the pitch and would go months without a pay check off it. All a far cry from the squeaky clean life they are used to.

On the other hand we shouldn't underestimate the attraction of playing in front of large, passionate crowds. To be cheered on by 15,000 nutty locals or have half a dozen people beating drums and chanting 'defend, defend.' No brainer innit?

Worst case scenario. Take the likes of Noh Alam Shah, Lionel Lewis, Daniel Bennett, Baihakki Khaizan, Indra Sahdan Daud and Noh Rahman out of the SLeague and we can see national team coach Raddy looking for an apartment in Jakarta.

How would the normally apathetic football media react? Would an exodus of national team players be the death knell for Singapore football or would we see the media taking an interest in the sons of Singapore playing abroad? And would that in turn create an interest in the local game?

Perhaps more importantly where would Singapore look to fill the void left by the aging, departing stars? Patently the Young Lions aren't ready to make that leap yet. Balestier Khalsa have started looking to South Korea while other sides like Gombak United have looked to lower league Australians.

Why not look to Malaysia? Young players dominated the national team selections against Manchester United and The Club Masquerading as Zimbabwe recently with promising players from Harimau Muda and My Team stepping up and showing their wares.

Of course this all nothing more than conjecture and the ramblings of a mind with way too much free time.


Indo agent looks at Singapore

Local FIFA registered agent Edy Syahputra sees plenty of opportunities for Singaporean players to ply their trade in Indonesia, especially following the introduction of the 3 = 2 rule which says that two foreigners must be Asian.

Sriwijaya are still interested in Agu Casmir while rumours about Lionel Lewis moving to Persija persist. Syahputra, quoted in today's Top Skor, says he is prioritising 'Lewis, Baihakki Khaizan and Daniel Bennett' while national team striker Indra Sahdan Daud and Noh Rahman, both with Sengkang Punggol are both thought to be interested in moving south, perhaps encouraged by their team mate Abdoulaye Djibril who has played here in the past.

There are a couple of teething problems though before any transfers could go ahead. The Singapore season ends after the Indonesian one begins and also there will be the Asian Cup qualifiers to be factored in. Singapore are up against Thailand.

It's likely no Singaporean could actually play in the ISL until December at the earliest.

Until now the papers here have pretty well linked everyone of the Lions national team with a move but will any actually do it and folow in the footsteps of Fandi Ahmad, David Lee, Ahmad Latiff and Itimi Dickson?

Monday, July 27, 2009


Those Malaysia v Zimbabwe friendlies

Malaysia fury over fake Warriors
Nkanyiso Moyo
IMAGINE Arsenal turning up for a friendly against Zimbabwe wearing the England kit?

Unimaginable of course!
But Zimbabwean soccer fans will be outraged today as New reveals the deception that saw Premier Soccer League champions Monomotapa don the national team colours and play in two “international” friendly matches against Malaysia this week.

Monomotapa lost 4-0 on Sunday and 1-0 on Tuesday to the Malaysians who are ranked 157th in the world.

Malaysian football authorities and the media were under the impression the team led onto the pitch by Rodwell Dhlakama was a national select side. The Malaysian FA showed local journalists letters from ZIFA stating that they were sending a national team.

Following Sunday’s defeat, Dhlakama insisted he was the national team coach, said local journalist Haresh Deol of the Malay Mail.

And on Tuesday, Dhlakama’s assistant Taurayo Mangwiro, keeping up the deception, addressed local journalists as if he were a member of the Warriors’ technical staff.

He said: “Since we have failed to qualify for the 2010 World Cup, we will now gather again and train hard for our coming international (friendly) matches."

ZIFA officials have refused to go on the record over the champions’ trip – with the top brass holding off-the-record briefings with journalists to deny giving Monomotapa the green light.

“Their participation in those matches depended on them getting clearance from the PSL, which they insist they sought but got no reply. There is clearly a reason to believe Monomotapa have done this without PSL and therefore ZIFA permission,” said one ZIFA official, threatening disciplinary action against the club.

But ZIFA’s culpability in the fiasco was magnified last night after New obtained exclusive pictures showing Monomotapa in Warriors colours – complete with the national emblem.
And Malaysians were also demanding answers.

In an editorial, the Malay Mail asked: “Don’t they check? Are we such a gullible nation that we assume everything told to us is the absolute truth?”

The paper said the local FA was “proving incompetent as they can't even tell the difference between a national champion club and a national team.”

It declared: “We have a Zimbabwean football club team masquerading as the national team. The coach of Monomotapa - Rodewell Dhlakama - even went on record to claim his was the national team. Checks with the media in Zimbabwe and other sources have proven otherwise.

“But never mind all that. People will claim a lot of things. Isn't the onus on us - the FA of Malaysia - to check the authenticity of the claims? Or was FAM party to this web of deceit?”

Local media in Malaysia reported the two meetings between the fake Warriors and the hosts as an "A" international match.

The Malaysian FA insists it only paid for Monomotapa’s hospitality and would not be footing the cost of travel. The FAM also insists it will not be paying Monomotapa an appearance fee.

But that will do little to appease Malaysians, with the Malay Mail insisting FAM has “provided a two-bit club side from Zimbabwe with a paid holiday.”

Story from : NEWZIMBABWE.COM NEWS:Published On: Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Then there is this from the Malaysian FA

The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM), wish to draw your attention to the article under the aforesaid headline published by Malay Mail on July 14, 2009, which had indeed caused much distress and anxiety in FAM.

The said article contained defamatory statements, unwarranted accusations and inaccuracies which had caused a reputable organisation like FAM, great damage, globally and domestically. The said article represents a malicious intent and an attempt to tarnish FAM's reputation.
FAM tolerates criticsm, constructive or otherwise, but the said article contained words, allegations and insinuations that expose FAM to hatred, contempt and ridicule to the right-thinking members of the society.
In particular Paragraph Six of the said article implied FAM officials as deceitful and Paragraph 10 of the same article which claimed FAM had paid for airfare, accommodation and appearance fee for the visiting team was inaccurate and malicious. The writer attempted to justify the paragraph by insisting that FAM was not forthcoming.
The said article had called into question our reputation, standing and above all, integrity. The article was written in bad faith to mislead the public by potraying FAM in bad light.
Therefore, an apology and a retraction must be made as soon as possible via the online and print versions of the newspaper, failing which the FAM would not hesitate to institute legal recourse.Yours faithfully,Football Association of MalaysiaLT GEN DATO' AZZUDDIN BIN AHMAD (Retired)General Secretary

COMMENT - all very nice and hunky dory but who went ahead and booked some club side?


Sunday's results

Thai Premier League

BEC Tero v Chonburi 1-2
Osotsapa v PEA 2-2
Nakorn Pathom v Bangkok United 1-3
Thai Port v Muang Thong United 1-0
TOT v Bangkok Glass 2-1
Sri Racha v Pattaya United 0-1

A good weekend for Chonburi sees them go three points clear at the top of the TPL after rivals Muang Thong United and Bangkok Glass suffered away defeats.

1 - Chonburi 16 10 3 3 27-18 33
2 - Bangkok Glass 16 8 6 2 20-13 30
3 - Muang Thong United 16 8 5 3 22-11 29
4 - Osotsapa 16 16 8 5 3 20-14 29

International Friendly

Singapore v Liverpool 0-5

Sunday, July 26, 2009


Singapore's whiney sporting culture?

I’m convinced that if ever the Olympic Games added whinging as a sport Singapore could give the original whingers Australia a run for their money.

The Sleague is one of the top leagues in Asia without a doubt, next weekend sees Tampines Rovers take on Singapore Armed Forces in a classic first v second match that would have fans salivating in their coffee shops…if it was Liverpool v Manchester United.

But it’s not. It’s only between two Singapore sides and we will be lucky if the crowd tops 3,000. And I have read and heard on many occasion that 5 Singapore Dollars is too expensive to watch a game of football. That people paid 10 dollars to watch Sheikh Haikul parade his skills against Fandi Ahmad being conveniently overlooked. Because they’re ‘famous’.

Football fans ambitions will have been whetted a few days earlier when Liverpool came to town.

It’s been a good few years since any English clubs had passed through the Lion City and fans had looked on jealously while Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok had cashed in on EPL mania. Singapore was like the spotty guy with glasses on the edge of the dance floor. Everyone knew here was there but did their best to avoid him.

But finally Liverpool were to arrive for a pre season friendly. Note the word friendly. Rafael Benitez is still looking at his squad and its fitness. He wants to use the games both in Singapore and Thailand to develop team spirit, try new ideas and give everyone a run out in difficult conditions.

Tell it to the locals. They are now feeling cheated because they won’t get a chance to see Steven Gerrard up close and personal. Despite the fact that he had featured prominently in the pre match build up.

They’ve been here before and recently. New A League club North Queensland Fury breezed into town with their new striker Robbie Fowler, another Liverpool legend. He was injured and he didn’t play. Cue more whines.

Once upon a time football was a team game but not it seems anymore. Football, at least in Singapore, is about individual players who have become greater than the club they represent.

Then we had a recent friendly against Vietnam played at Juring east Stadium. The ground was filled as were the letter boxes of the local papers. Too many people, writers opined, nowhere to sit, not comfortable.

Brought up on a wall to wall diet of English Premier League football perhaps Singaporeans expectations are too high. Why should they get a chance to meet the players when most fans back in England will never see a footballer in normal clothes?

Or maybe we should be positive. Maybe we should see the comments not as negativity but as feedback from a few disgruntled customers looking for more bang for their buck? After all, most of the fans at the National Stadium this afternoon will be happy enough just to see real Liverpool players wearing real Liverpool shirts in Singapore.


Are you watching Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore?

Thai Premier League opens one stop shop


Weekend's results

Thai Premier League

Chula United v Samut Songkhram 0-0
TTM Samut Sakorn v Raj Navy Rayong 1-1

Malaysian Super League

Selangor v Pahang 5-1 (Safee Sale 2, Amri Yahyah 2, Surendran; Badrul Hisani)


Ponaryo moves

Ponaryo Astaman has movd to Sriwijaya for next season. Negotiations are still ongoing with Ismed Sofyan while Bambang Pamungkas may be waiting for a move from Persija's new owners before deciding his future.

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Jaya stays in Bandung

In a surprise move Jaya Hartono, who had seemed on the verge of signing for Persebaya, has decided to stay with Persib, crediting the strong relationship he has with club officials there.


Sriwijaya looking to Singapore

Rahmad Darmawan, the Sriwijaya coach who has led his side to three trophies in the last two seasons, is considering his options regarding the two Asian players he can use to complete his squad for next season.

Under the new regulations teams in the ISL can have three foreigners plus two Asian players. The Copa winners already have Kieth Kayamba, Zah Rahan and Anoure Obiora signed up. Now they are loking to Asia.

Sriwijaya have been linked with a few Thais recently, doncha love the way clubs are so open about who they covet? Total contrast to the likes of Wenger who like to keep mum.

Now Darmawan has mentioned the Singaporeans he is interested in. Precious Emujeraye the Woodlands Wellington defender is one. Funnily enough he was offered to Indonesian sides last December but no one went for it.

Itimi Dickson is another name on Darmawan's list. Currently with Home United he spent time with Persitara and was keen to come back last season but priced himself out of a move.

Noh Alam Shah, the Tampines Rovers striker, is the third name on the list. Personally I would love to see him play here. Just what would he have made of Ernest Jeremiah's headbutt of the ref during the recent Copa final? NAS deserves a bigger stage than Uncle Popper in the SLeague, he has all the makings of a big stage player and perhaps, finally, this is his chance?

Sriwijaya are also interested in three Persija players. They had given a deadline of today to Ponaryo Astaman, Ismed Sofyan and Bambang Pamungkas but there are indications the costs are too high and they are now looking elsewhere. To Pelita Jaya midfielder Firman Utina and Persitara striker Rahmat Rivai who also interests Persik.

Most of course could be bollocks but it feels good to be talking about football again!


Persija target Portuguese coach

One text I received this morning described Persija's new investor, Eddy Joenardi, as 'Abramovich' coming to Persija. To extend that analogy it is only right that the club nicknamed the Kemayoran Tigers will to a Portuguese coach to do a Mourinho. Alberto Rafael Gomez is 54 and I know nothing beyond that.

Now of course they are going to be linked to all and sundry including a couple of young Portuguese players, Persijap's Thai wing/full back Phaitoon Thiabma, Singapore keeper Lionel Lewis, with one paper cheekily slipping in Persib's Eka Ramdhani!

Joernardi is looking to investing 30 billion rupiah (10,000 rupiah = 1 USD) a year for a five year period.


Persija to go it alone?

Following yesterday's meeting looking into the possibility of Persija and Persitara merging I understand there was no agreement and that Persija are looking for a sponsor for next season so they will not be reliant on local government subsidy


Balestier continue winning ways

Balesiter Khalsa v Albirex Niigata 2-0 (Oh In Kyun, Jun Jin) 1,184

Three goals in three games for Oh In Kyun, Balesiter's Korean led revival has seen them climb off the bottom of the SLeague, overtaking Young Lions in the process. Unprecedented back to back wins, indeed we could go back further and say one defeat in four games, has changed the Tigers fortunes but...

...their next six games are

Gombak Away
SAF Home
Tampines Home
Super Reds Away
Home United Away

For context they had previously been on an 11 game run which had seen them beaten eight times...

Friday, July 24, 2009


Easy headline


Fabio Capello may bring the England squad to Thailand to play a game in the build-up to next year's World Cup in South Africa, officials said yesterday.

Andy Anson, the chief executive of England's bid team for the 2018 World Cup, said Thailand, coached by former Everton and England midfielder Peter Reid, had extended an invitation and it was being considered."We are actively trying to find a date for England to play here in Thailand," he said while on a visit to Asia to drum up support for England's bid.

"Ultimately that is Fabio Capello's decision -- he is the one who decides what type of teams England need to play against. But I think it would be fantastic to see England out here.

"There is a passion for England and the national team, it could work very well.
"We have to ultimately wait for England to qualify, then the draw and finally Fabio Capello and that is the way it should be."

England are 10 points clear of Croatia at the top of Group Six in European qualifying and are just one result away from booking their place in South Africa.


Persipura kicked out

Persipura have finally been punished after walking off the field during the Copa Indonesia final earlier this month.

They have been suspended from next season's Copa.

Other punishments include:

Striker Ernest Jeremiah has been suspended from Indonesian football for three years after headbutting the ref

Alberto Goncalves received a similar ban

Other cash fines were also meted out during the hearing.

Sits back and waits for the decisions to be overturned...


Selangor call for foreigners return

KUALA LUMPUR: Newly crowned Malaysian Super League champions Selangor have declared their determination to shine in next year’s AFC Cup.

Team manager Zakaria Ab Rahim told the local media that Malaysia’s most popular club would now strive to make an impression in continental competitions.

“It’s time to move forward and be counted in Asia,” said Zakaria. “We have to start preparing early and have to strengthen the squad with foreign players if we are to make a strong impression in the AFC Cup.”

“We will submit our proposal to the FA of Malaysia (FAM) to open the doors to foreign players again. We have to raise the bar in our own league first. Our league is ranked 18th in Asia behind Indonesia (12) and Singapore (8).

“Teams should move forward all the time. Our aim is to make it to the AFC Champions League. It is quite lucrative to play in the AFC Champions League with US$7mil prize money up for grabs. There is money to be made in every stage.

“We are serious about elevating our standards and hope to move up from the AFC Cup.”
The Red Giants, as Selangor are known, have won the Charity Sheild and FA Cup this season and are looking to win the Malaysia Cup as well to sweep all the four Malaysian football trophies.

COMMENT - Certainly Selangor are one of a handful of sides from this regions who could become regional powers given the will along with Persib and Persija. They have large fan bases and once they find a way to tap into them there is no reason why they could not start challenging teams from Japan and South Korea...


Persik eye Persitara duo

Persik are famous for their cavalier football, everyone heads forward leaving the keeper to assume all defensive duties.

In the latter of of last season it was Persitara who were the great entertainers.

So it is appropriate that the side from Kediri, who have twice been champions in the last six years, should be raiding North Jakarta. Reports have them linked with striker Rahmat Rivai and midfielder John Tarkpor


Good news for SAF

Gombak United v DPMM 3-3 (Emmanuel Emuejeraye, Gabriel Obatola 2,; Shahrazen Said 2, Abdelhamid Berguiga) 2,062

They went 2-0 up, DPMM pulled back that deficit, Obatola netted a late pen but the visitors resuced a point with Said's last gasp equaliser. It may have ben a great game of football but with the SLeague title at stake you can be sure that the respective coaches would have prefered a scrappy 1-0 win and with it three points.

But as the table shows it is SAF and Tampines who are the real winners from this stalemate.

1 - SAF 20 15 0 5 54-22 45
2 - Tampines 20 11 8 1 33-15 41
3 - DPMM 20 10 6 4 28-20 36
4 - Gombak 20 10 5 5 38-25 35

Leading scorers

18 - Duric (SAF)
16 - Obatola (Gombak United)
11 - Ludovick (Home United), Noh Alam Shah (Tampines Rovers

Thursday, July 23, 2009


MSL Leading Scorers

16 - Nizaruddin Yusof (Perlis)
14 - Indraputra Mahayuddin (Kelantan)
13 - Razali Umar Kandasamy (Perak), Ashaari Shamsudin (Terengganu)
12 - Azlan Ismail (Terengganu), Khyril Muhymeen (Kedah)
11 - Zaquan Adha (Negri Sembilan), Amri Yahyah (Selangor)

10 - Safee Sali (Selangor), Manaf Mamat (Terengganu), Norshahrul Idlan Talaha (MyTeam)


And then there was one?

Tomorrow sees a meeting in Jakarta that could change the face of football in the capital city. Again.

Following weeks of conjecture and rumour talks will go ahead about a proposed merger between Persija and Persitara, the two Jakarta based clubs currently in the ISL.

At face value these two sides merging is akin to Chelsea and Millwall becoming one. Persija, big, brash, cosmopolitan. Persitara. Rough and ready, proud of it's north Jakarta roots and Betawi heritage.

But with the North Jakarta government unwilling to back its own side and with all clubs supposedly free of any state or provincial funding, perhaps this is the only way to go. If the fans can be brought on board.

Last season they only played a few home games at Lebak Bulus Stadium, one time of Persija, after much teeth grinding.

Jakarta has seen clubs come and go before. Pelita Jaya once played here. So did Persijatim before finding success in Palembang rebranded as Sriwijaya.

Can a united Jakarta FC bring success back to the capital city?


Greg Nwokolo

It's been a while since anyone has mentioned the former Persija striker last heard of heading to Germany for trials.

Now it may be quiet in the office today but I have noticed half a dozen googles for Nwokolo coming this way over the last few hours...all from Portugal!

Anything or nothing?


Asian football benefits how exactly?

With the Manchester United circus flying its merry way to South Korea and Liverpool landing in Singapore we can look back on some high profile friendlies, a high profile non event and plenty of new snaps on Flickr.

But long term will Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore football be the better for their one night stands with England's most popular?

How many Kop wannabes who braved Bangkok's trafic the other night and who will fill the National Stadium in Singapore soon will be converted to the local game? How many will savour their experience enough to want to start following the fortunes of their local sides be it BEC Tero or Nakhorn Pathom?

Or will they still look down their noses at the local product?

How many people will have seen Sir Alesx Ferguson's comments after the first Manchester United game in KL that Malaysians need to look to South Korea and Japan for football development and head to the airport on the next available flight to check out how the north east Asian nations run the game.

How many Chinese kids in Singapore will want to take up playing football professionally, risking parental wrath that they don't become doctors or engineers, because they were inspired by Mascherano's all action performance.

Liverpool are cool, Tampines Rovers aren't. Fernando Torres is cool, Noh Alam Shah isn't. Why exactly?

One reason why colonialism is such a dirty word is because all a countries energies were directed towards providing wealth and comforts to the mother country far across the sea, neglecting their own. Independance was supposed to have changed that. Instead we now have globalisation where people choose to provide wealth and comforts to a distant country far across the sea, neglecting their own.


Selangor v Persib 31/07

Persib squad


Cecep Supriyatna, Dedi Heryanto


Wildansyah, Edi Hafid Murtado, Maman Abdurahman, Nova Arianto, Tedi Siamsyah, Anggi Indra Permana


Atep, Eka Ramdani, Gilang Angga Kusuma, Irwan Wijasmara, Munadi, Dias Angga Putra, Rendi Saputra, Jejen Zaenal Abidin, Wahyu Korpriyana


Christian Gonzales, Airlangga, Rudi Geofani Somantri

Despite being included in the squad for this friendly, Selangor Cup, there is no guarantee that players like Nova Arianto and Christian Gonzales will be with the Maung Bandung next season. Indeed yesterday Arianto was in discussions with his former club Persebaya.


More Indonesian friendlies?

It's a slow work day...

I'm not sure of the status of the friendlies against Malaysia and China which were scheduled for next month but the Indonesian FA are still looking at preparing the national team for the sian Cup qualifying ties against Kuwait in November.

There is a good chance they will play Saudi Arabia at the end of August while a game against Syria is being pencilled in for early November.

The last time Indonesia played the Syrians was in the last World Cup qualifying round when they came off distinctly second best, losing 4-1 at home and 7-0 in Damascus.

Still n all, China, Saudi Arabia and Syria are just the sort of opponent Indonesia needs to pitt themselves against.


Bridging the culture gap

With Thai striker Teerathep Winothai returning from his spell with Belgian side to play for Muang Thong United in the second half of the Thai Premier League the question remains. Who will be the first south east Asian player to successfully make a career in Europe.

Fandi Ahmad (Singaporean) - was offered a chance with Ajax but was persuaded to move somewhere closer to home, NIAC Mitra in Surabaya, by his family. Later on had spells with Groningen in the Netherlands where he is still fondly remembered

Bambang Pamungkas (Indonesia) - spent one season with EHC Norad, a team from the Dutch nether regions but soon returned home

Noh Alam Shah (Singapore) - had trials with Notts County and Skonto Riga (Latvia) and regrets he never had the chance to play there

Teerathep Winothai (Thailand) - after six months with Belgian side Lierse (6 games, 1 goal) he has returned to Thailand. Had spells with Crystal Palace as a youngster

Suree Sukkha, Kiatprawut Saivaew, Teerasil Dangda (Thailand) - went to Manchester City when Thaksin Shinawatra owned the club but never played in the first team

Lionel Lewis (Singapore) - had trials with Manchester City and Grasshoppers in Switzerland

Irvin Museng (Indonesia) - spent some time on Ajax's books but think I read somewhere he was now in Makassar. Still only 16.

So who's it gonna be? Who will cross the linguistic, cultural divide and make their mark on Europe like Park ji Sung has? Could it be Hariss Harun, now with the Young Lions? Or is there a second chance for Teerathep?


AFC Under 19s Qualifying Round

Seven groups in all, these are the fixtures for Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. Complete fixtures and kick offs here. Of course will Indonesia still be hosting come November? I hope so...

01/11 - Thailand v Macau (Rajamangala Stadium)
01/11 - Indonesia v Singapore (Bung Karno Stadium)
01/11 - Malaysia v Myanmar (XinJiang Sports Stadium)

03/11 - Thailand v Laos (Rajamangala Stadium)
03/11 - Japan v Indonesia (Lebak Bulus Stadium)
03/11 - Singapore v Hong Kong (Lebak Bulus Stadium)
03/11 - North Korea v Malaysia (XinJiang Sports Stadium)

06/11 - Bangladesh v Thailand (Royal Thai Army Stadium)
06/11 - Chinese Taipei v Indonesia (Bung Karno Stadium)
06/11 - Australia v Singapore (Bung Karno Stadium)
06/11 - Guam v Malaysia (XinJiang Sports Stadium)

08/11 - Vietnam v Thailand (Rajamangala Stadium)
08/11 - Singapore v Japan (Lebak Bulus Stadium)
08/11 - Indonesia v Australia (Lebak Bulus Stadium)
08/11 - Malaysia v China (XinJiang Sports Stadium)

11/11 - South Korea v Thailand (Rajamangala Stadium)
11/11 - Hong Kong v Indonesia (Bung Karno Stadium)
11/11 - Chinese Taipei v Singapore (Bung Karno Stadium)
11/11 - Philippines v Malaysia (XinJiang Sports Stadium)


Would Gonzales thrive in Singapore?

I know it's hypothetical but were DPMM succeed in taking Christian Gonzales to Singapore would he be as successful there as he has been in Indonesia? A post on Kallang Roar got me thinking about that one.

Success in one league, or indeed in one club, doesn't always mean the same degree of success is guaranteed elsewhere.

Gonzales is a deadly finisher. That's about it. He needs delivery and in his spell with Persik he was able to rely on Ronaldo Fangundez, Budi Sudarsono and Danilo Fernando to lay things on a plate for him.

Likewise at Persib he had the likes of Eka Ramdani, Lorenzo Cabanas and Hilton Moreira supplying the ammo. All he had to do was find a yard of space, something he excels at, and the chances are the keeper would be picking the ball out the net.

But does Singapore have creative players like the aforementioned? DPMM are reknowned less for their silky skills or more for a robust approach, something that also appeals to the Uruguayan.

Defences of course are different with the SLeague being unfailingly polite while in Indonesia the two footed challenge lives on and attacking players are reknowned for their ablity to swivel and twist in mid air after being sent into orbit by defensive destroyers that make Norman Hunter and Ron Harris look like pussies.

Perhaps at SAF where Aleksander Duric seemingly pops in goals with the minimum of effort.


Jacksen stays at Persipura

Brazilian Jacksen Tiago has decided to extend his contract with ISL Champions Persipura. Jacksen is one of the most successful coaches in the country having also won the championship with Persebaya.

Funnily enough the Green Force from East Java had hoped to entice the toothpick chewing one back but now must start looking elsewhere as they prepare for a return to top flight football.

Last season began so well under Fredy Muli but come December financial worries saw him depart to be replaced by Moldovan Arcan Iurie. A less consistent second half to the season followed as Iurie's new signings struggled to settle and Persebaya went into a play off against PSMS, coincidentally Muli's old side, with Iurie out of contract and the highly rated Aji Santoso drafted in.

They won, on penalties, but Santoso was already committed to another newly promoted side, Persisam and the Surabaya team were left looking for another new coach.

With Jacksen no longer available they are runoured to be interested in former Persib, Deltras and Persik coach Jaya Hartono.


Football last night


Sengkang Punggol v Home United 1-2 (Yamamoto; Peres de Oliveira 2) 1,648

International Friendly

Thailand v Liverpool 1-1 (Sutee Suksomkit; Ryan Babel)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Work permits

Do DPMM's foreign players need two work permits? One for Brunei and one for Singapore?

Any thoughts?


Home United deny interest in Lewis

Following on from my earlier story about Home United keeper Lionel Lewis attracting the interest of Indonesian side Persija, his coach Sivaji has denied the rumours saying the club had recieved no offers for the 27 year old.

I showed a picture of Lewis to a Persija official here and he was gobsmacked. For some reason he thought the keeper was African!


Salute the Champions - Selangor!

Plus v Perlis 2-1
My Team v Johor 0-5
Kuala Muda v Negeri Sembilan 1-0
PDRM v Selangor 1-6
Kedah v Kelantan 1-0
Pahang v Perak 2-1

1 - Selangor 25 19 3 3 59-20 60
2 - Perlis 25 16 5 4 38-18 53
3 - Kedah 25 15 3 7 44-28 48

With the MSL wrapped up alongside the FA Cup next is the Malaysia Cup as the Red Giants line up a treble. And how Kedah must be cursing their poor start to the season and Kelantan being forced to play some home games in KL. But that's football innit??? If ...

The only remaining question is will PDRM win their last game or will they go through the whole season winless?


NJ Mania reject merger

Persitara fans, NJ Mania, took to the streets yesterday to protest against any possible merger with hated city rivals Persija. TV news showed them congregating near the Mayor's office up north.

One channel of reasoning has suggested it would make more economical sense if there was just one Jakarta side which would absorb local funding, unity in strength type thing.

Of course most large cities round the world have two or more clubs but they tend not to rely on taxpayer's money.

I understand last year there was an investor keen on buying Persitara but it never happened for one reason or another.


New imports inspire Balestier Khalsa

Balestier Khalsa v Young Lions 2-1 (Oh In Kyun, Jamie Pitt; Madhu Mohana) 1,452

New signings Oh In from South Korea and Jamie Pitt from Wollongong Community, sorry but are they NSW State League or lower, scored the goals that gave the Tigers just their second win of the season. Their last three points came in a home win over Geylang United back in March.

They remain rooted to the bottom of the table on 12 points, two behind Young Lions who sit 11th.

It was the Korean's second goal since arriving from K2 side Yesan, he is already second top scorer with them, while Pitt was making his debut last night.

UPDATE - thanks to ruce for pointing out that Woollongong Community are a continuation of Woollongong Wolves from the old NSL days. I saw the Wolves play a few times, their stadium was at the delightfully named Fairymeadow and they had former Tottenham and Manchester United striker Alan Brazil guest for them on a couple of occassions. Would be nice to see a Woollongong presence in the A League...


SLeague side join chase for Gonzales

Christian Gonzales is a man in demand. The barrel chested Uruguayan striker is the highest paid foreigner in Indonesia as well as the leading scorer in the game.

Since arriving in Indonesia he has scored freely, first in two seasons with PSM, then three and a half with Persik, with whom he won the title back in 2006,and most recently with Persib where he spent the second half of the season and continued his free scoring ways.

Now he is being sought by Persiba, led by his former Persik mentor Daniel Roekito. DPMM Brunei are also in the fray, says his wife, but it appears his first choice is Persib.

Problem is Persib have yet to appoint a coach and the local government is reluctant to give funding for next season.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


All ticket clash shows healthy TPL

The Thai league returns this weekend with some cracking fixtures gromit including an all ticket affair between Thai Port and Muang Thong United in Klong Toey. By all ticket I mean tckets go on advanced sale several days ahead of the game.

I've never heard of this happening at Indonesian league games, and definitely not in Singapore, and is probably more a reflection of the inadequacies of PAT Stadium rather than booming interest in the TPL.

I was at the recent game against Chonburi when the ground was filled to bursting point but the crowd would have looked average had the game been moved to somewhere like the Chula Stadium. A point perhaps but largely irrelevant.

You can only fill what you have and kudos to Thai Port, along with teams like Chonburi and Muang Thong, who are taking a professional approach to the game, and it's marketing, and I urge all club managers in Indonesia and Singapore to head to Bangkok for the game and check out the trade being carried out in the club shop and the potential a well club run has. Quite why clubs like Persib and Persija need tax payer subsidies is beyond me.

Oh look, there's me on that old hobby horse again.

Other games see an Eastern Seaboard Derby between Sri Racha and Pattaya United while glamour club Pattaya (whoops, that should be Chonburi!) travel to Bangkok to duke it out with BEC Tero.


To be decided

Indonesia have friendly internationals pencilled in for early August against Malaysia and China as well as an AFC Under 19 qualifying round and an Asian Cup qualifier against Kuwait in November. Will these go ahead or will they be moved because of the percieved threat here?


Sriwijaya strengthen midfield

Sriwijaya have reportedly added Arema and Indonesia midfielder Arief Suryono to their ranks. He joins Zah Rahan at the heart of a side that coach Rahmad darmawan hopes can regain the title next season

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