Monday, February 06, 2012


Not As Planned For Pelita Jaya

Pelita Jaya’s biggest home crowd for many a year saw them beaten 3-1 by Persib. Ok, the game was played at Jalak Harupat which is Persib’s home stadium but it used to be Pelita Jaya’s though when they played there they struggled to attract fans in what is staunch Persib territory.

The game was moved from Pelita Jaya’s usual home stadium of Singaperbangsa in Karawang probably because that stadium would not have been able to handle the travelling support and that makes two consecutive home games played ‘away’ from home; they hosted Persija in Solo for the same reason.

With Rahmad Darmawan now coaching the team big things are expected of Pelita Jaya. Owned by the Bakrie family they have been better known for their accent on youth in recent years but all that changed 12 months ago when they surprised everyone by signing Malaysian striker Safee Sali from Selangor in the wake of his goal scoring exploits during the ASEAN Cup in 2010. A signing on a par with Arsenal snapping up Lionel Messi.

More big names were attracted to Karawang, an industrial city east of Jakarta best known for its expansive cemeteries promptly advertised on billboards along the toll road, as they tore up their very own project youth that had seen players like Egi Melgiansyah, Dian Agusts Prasetyo, Jajang Maulyana and Yohan Ibo get their break under former coach Fandi Ahmad.

During the pre season along came more big names. Greg Nwokolo (pictured in red) came fromPersija, Victor Igbenefo after several years of success with Persipura, playmaker John Tarkpor while Egi was made club captain.

But the season has not gone as planned and club management will be hoping Darmawan, a title winner with Persipura and Sriwijaya, can work his magic for a third time.

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