Sunday, October 14, 2012


Harimau Muda Plan Home Games In Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR - Harimau Muda, the Malaysian national Under-23 team currently competing in the S-League, are likely to set up base in Johor or Malacca next season and host their home matches there, in a move that will give the league's 12 other clubs the opportunity to experience playing competitive football across the Causeway.

This new development was revealed to TODAY by Football Association of Malaysia Secretary General Azzuddin Ahmad.

According to him, the FAM and the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) have agreed that Harimau Muda will play their home matches in either Malaysian state as part of the S-League's plan to widen the appeal of the tournament.

"We will lay out the costs involved and the present venues available, and hopefully we can finalise things by end of November," said Azzuddin.

"Johor Baru or Malacca are the perfect locations to host our team's home matches. JB is only, at most, an hour's drive from Singapore and, likewise, the drive to Malacca will take no more than three hours."

As part of a Memorandum of Understanding signed by the football bodies of Singapore and Malaysia last year, Harimau Muda joined the S-League and are currently based at Yishun Stadium, while the FAS created the LionsXII side to take part in this year's Malaysian Super League and Malaysia Cup.

Azzuddin said basing Harimau Muda in Johor or Malacca will increase Malaysians' awareness not only of their team but also of Singapore football. He said: "It is a good move because Malaysian fans will get to see some teams from Singapore as well as the young Malaysian talent in action."

However, he also told TODAY that the present Harimau Muda team could change next year.

"We are now sending a U-23 team to the S-League but coach Ong Kim Swee has tabled a recommendation that we do not field the same team next year," he said. 

"Ong would prefer to take the team ... elsewhere, maybe Europe. His argument is that this present arrangement is not in the best interest of Malaysian football because it is a SEA Games year next year. Having the U-23 team in the S-League means exposing our SEA Games squad ... to our rivals in the region.

"I do agree with Ong that it is not to our advantage. So I will put forward his proposals to the council for a final decision."

Fans of SLeague time to walk the talk. They who snubbed the LionsXII now let's see your comparison support...
Fans of SLeague time to walk the talk. They who snubbed the LionsXII now let's see your comparison support...
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