Monday, April 30, 2012
Bobotoh Go Where Blackburn Fans Fear To Tread
Persib fans recently decided they had tired of Persib manager Umuh Muchtar, known in these parts as Um-Mourihno. Certainly under his stewardship the club, one of the biggest in the country, have become nothing more than also rans. Coaches have come on gone, accusations of player power have filled the air and Persib are no nearer winning a trophy.
So the fans are revolting. Their home game against Persipura was played behind closed doors, apparently because said Umuh didn't fancy the protests that were being promised by the Persib faithful, win or lose. Persib lost 1-0 and I understand, though cannot confirm, there were some disturbances in the streets around the stadium.
To be fair, Umuh has done some things right. Persib do have the look of a modern day football club about them. They sell replica shirts, have an official website and sell advertising boards. No big deal? It is here, in Indonesia!
News today that Umuh is considering stepping down. A speedy response by the Persib fans that could have their counterparts in Blackburn salivating, wondering what more they can do.
Thing is the Persib fans don't give a shit and have nothing to lose so throwing the odd brick or whatever doesn't phase them too much. Them Blackburn fans would shit it if they missed the last bus home or got their match programme creased.
Sunday, April 29, 2012
SLeague Fun And Games
Which all means the SLeague table remains its freshness albeit with a distinctly foreign feel to it.
1 - DPMM 10 7 2 1 21-9 23
2 - Balestier Khalsa 10 6 3 1 12-6 21
3 - Harimau Muda 10 6 2 2 17-9 20
8 - Shotaro Ihata (Home United), Aleksander Duric (Tampines Rovers)
7 - Jordan Webb (Hougang United)
6 - Shahrazan Said (DPMM), Frederic Mendy (Home United), Mislav Karoglan (SAFFC)
Singapore Cup 2012 Draw
Singapore Armed Forces FC vs Balestier Khalsa
Gombak United vs Harimau Muda
Tanjong Pagar United vs Hougang United
Yotha FC (Laos) vs Albirex Niigata (Singapore)
Phnom Penh Crown vs Tampines Rovers
Loyola Meralco Sparks (Philippines) vs Geylang United
Kanbazwa FC (Myanmar) vs Woodlands Wellington
The Young Lions are missing from this year's competition as are Harimau Muda who are replaced by, umm, Harimau Muda. There are two Harimau Muda teams, A compete in the SLeague but not the Singapore Cup while B compete in the Singapore Cup but not the SLeague.
The SLeague teams were seeded based upon the results of a ball juggling competition! Seriously...find the story here.
Last year's cup was won by Home United, defeating Albirex Niigata in the final.
It's An Indonesian Thing
Today I planned to go see Persipasi host PPSM at Ciracas Field in the official Divisi Utama. As far as I can make out, Persipasi don't have a website. Divisi Utama do and on their website they clearly stated the game was on Sunday.
So I went to the pub for a couple of pre match beers ahead of the game. Then I saw a tweet from Persipasi saying they had won 2-0. Ok, I've long suspected results in Indonesia have been fixed in advance, joke, but tannounced two hours before kick off?
Further enquiry revealed the game had been played yesterday!
If the supposedly official website can't get the day right then how the hell can Indonesian football expect itself to be taken seriously by anyone beyond the hard core who are in the loop?
Of course if I try to ask what happened, people will smile, shrug their shoulders and say this is Indonesia.
I don't accept that. It's a get out of jail card to excuse incompetence and it presupposes Indonesians are happy enough to accept this bullshit. They're not of course. Check out how many relatively wealthy locals follow foreign teams and the money they spend following those teams in all liklihood they will never see in the flesh. And then ask why none of their money is filling the coffers of the local game.
Brushing off incomptence as an Indonesian thing is an insult to Indonesians. Not me. Locals. Treat potential punters like shit, espevially those with a bit of cash to spend, and they will take their money elsewhere.
Be the change you wanna see in the others.
Saturday, April 28, 2012
Persija Won't Be Alone In Solo
The two affected games are against Persela on 2/5 and Arema on 6/5.
Yeah, I know what you're thinking. Neither game is on 1/5. What do you want, logic? Of course it makes no sense. It ain't supposed to make sense.
Controversy Reigns In Indonesia
And just now we witnessed Arema scoring a late winner against Pelita Jaya. An Arema striker went down, took a quick free kick that caught the visiting defence asleep and it was 3-2. Did the ref blow for a free kick? Did he allow it to be taken quickly?
So in that second incident we were treated to one teams under one ownership playing up on a TV channel owned by the same group!
I guess we could wait for the detailed analysis that comes post match where we can pore over every TV angle. Oh, wait a minute, how silly of me!
Friday, April 27, 2012
Mitra Kukar Clearout
English striker Marcus Bent has similarly left the club, apparently they felt he hadn't contributed enough! Read into that what you will.
But hey, a home defeat is still a home defeat. Who knows, after finding out the world has not ended and mutant frogs did not fall from the sky, they may lose again.
Nah. Let's not get carried away!
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Indonesia Cup 3rd Round Draw
Semen Padang v Pro Duta
PSMS v Persiraja
PSLS v Persebaya
PSIS v Persik
PPSM v Persis
Persiba Bantul v Perseman
Persema v Persibo
PSM v Arema
Some interesting ties. Semen Padang, who were a sponsor of the national team during the SEA Games, meet Pro Duta who are owned by a guy who has got himself on a lot of PSSI committees. Couple of tasty local affairs too with PPSM against Persis and Persema playing Persibo
Ties to be played on two leg basis and are scheduled for 9 and 23 May but don't go booking your hols ok?
Divisi Utama Side Pull The Plug
I thought in this new, all wonderful, all singing, all dancing era of new management at the PSSI we would never see clubs complaining about having no money.
I'm also hearing of other clubs in the same league where players have yet to be paid.
Plus ca change, eh?
Stags' AFC Cup Ambitions End
Tampines have struggled to score during the cup, netting just five goals while Kitchee, who feature former Muang Thong United and Bradford City defender Zesh Rehman, had conceded just two.
In the final group game, the two qualified sides, Kitchee and Terangganu, will fight it out in Hong Kong to decide who will finish top while Tampines will fly to Vietnam knowing that defeat there would see them finish bottom of the group.
All such a contrast to Home United who defeated Citizen, also in Hong Kong, the previous night to secure their place in the next round along with Chonburi.
Saturday, April 21, 2012
The Night Of The Big Cats
In last night's other game Young Lions (Lions) earned their first win of the season, thumping Tanjong Pagar Jaguars) 5-0 away from home, two of the goals coming from Jonathon Toto.
The Young Lions climbed off the bottom with Tanjong Pagar replacing them
Friday, April 20, 2012
Home Win But DPMM Stay Top
Yesterdays other game saw Albirex Niigata overcome champions Tampines Rovers by the same narrow margin. 1,227 were there to see Yasuhiro's 64th minute winner.
Tonight sees Young Lions take on Tanjong Pagar. The Young Lions have had a tough time so far with just a single point from their opening seven games.
In tonight's other game, Balestier Khalsa can go top if they defeat Harimau Muda
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Buriram United Start Like Buriram PEA
Indonesia Premier League
Indonesia Super League
|1 - Persipura 20 12 6 2 36-21 42|
2 - Sriwijaya 18 12 3 3 40-16 39
3 - Persiwa 19 11 4 4 32-22 37
15 - Keith Kayamba (Sriwijaya)
13 - Safee Sali (Pelita Jaya), Alberto Goncalves (Persipura)
12 - Hilton Moreria (Sriwijaya), Bambang Pamungkas (Persija)
Important game for Sriwijaya away to Persisam this afternoon. Victory would take them back above Persipura on goal difference
Hougang Owner In Rangers Bid
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Newin To The Rescue!
The Nonsense Continues
Amid the hubbub over the sensational arrival of former national team coach Alfred Riedl, the Indonesian Football Association (PSSI) suddenly shifted course and said it would once again allow players from the breakaway Indonesian Super League to turn out for the Merah Putih.
“To build a great national team, we’ll need all the best players we have,” said Bernhard Limbong, a national team supervisor and PSSI executive committee member. “Starting [Wednesday], we’ll let the coach call up all the best players, even if they play in the ISL.”
Limbong claimed the PSSI had made the decision at its annual congress in Palangkaraya, Central Kalimantan, on March 18 but was just waiting for the right time to announce it.
“This is part of our efforts for reconciliation. We want to show the ISL there is no discrimination in the national team,” he said. “Players from the ISL can be called up to senior team, Under-23, Under-21 and other levels.”
That would put the PSSI at odds with world governing body FIFA, which in December said players from non-sanctioned leagues were banned from competing for their national team.
In the wake of that decision, Indonesia fielded an inexperienced squad — mainly U-23 players from the Indonesian Premier League — for its final 2014 World Cup qualifier, a 10-0 loss at Bahrain on Feb. 29. It had used ISL players in its seven previous qualifiers despite the IPL being the officially sanctioned top flight.
The next national team events are a U-23 tournament in Palestine in May and U-22 Asian Cup qualifying in June.
Limbong acknowledged the potential issues but said the PSSI would try to avoid any sanctions.
“We’ll notify FIFA and the AFC [Asian Football Confederation] about this decision. We’ll make them understand that this is the best way to end the dispute,” he said. “We’ll explain to them that all PSSI members agree with the decision. We believe they will understand.”
He also rejected suggestions that the move was meant to curry favor with players after Riedl returned to Jakarta on Sunday.
Reports suggested the Austrian had arrived to coach the national team of the “shadow” PSSI formed by Indonesian Football Savior Committee (KPSI) members and chaired by La Nyalla Mattalitti, but Riedl denied that.
“There is no offer. I was invited by friends to come to Indonesia and I came here as we have to keep close with our friends,” said Riedl, who had 11 months left on his contract when he was sacked just days after a “pro-reform” group took over the PSSI last July and installed Djohar Arifin Husin as chairman.
However, La Nyalla’s deputy Rahim Soekasah said the shadow PSSI would decide on Friday whether to offer Riedl the job.
“Riedl is the one who started the national team’s rejuvenation and we think he’s the right person to head the national team,” Rahim said.
National team players said they just wanted the months of uncertainty to end soon.
“It’s great that the PSSI has opened the national team door for ISL players,” said Persisam Samarinda striker Yongki Aribowo, who has eight caps and two goals with the Merah Putih.
“I really want to wear the [national team] jersey again. But most of all, I want the problems to be settled first. I don’t want our country to be sanctioned by FIFA just because we [ISL players] play for the national team.”
Sriwijaya FC goalkeeper Ferry Rotinsulu said he had mixed feelings about the news.
“[The PSSI] kept us from playing for the national team because they said they didn’t want to break FIFA’s rules. Why are they willing to break the rules now?” Ferry said. “I just want one PSSI and one national team, period.”
Friday, April 06, 2012
Annuar Shut Up. Finally!
While the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) have moved to distance themselves from the statements of their deputy president Annuar Musa, they will not have to contend with the outspoken Kelantan FA president in the near future.
Annuar faced the FAM disciplinary committee yesterday for his public criticism of the Malaysian national team, was found guilty and suspended for two-and-a-half years.
The punishment meted out by the FAM disciplinary committee headed by Taufik Abdul Razak means Annuar will have to relinquish his position in the FAM hierarchy and also give up his post as the Kelantan FA president.
After the three-hour hearing at the FAM headquarters yesterday, Annuar was met by members of the media but would not comment as he had to seek permission from the FAM Executive Committee.
He left the building to greet a crowd of around 200 of his supporters who had gathered to show their support.
"Stay calm and do not over-react to this punishment," he told the crowd.
Speaking to Today, FAM general-secretary Azzuddin Ahmad said yesterday: "I have no comments to make on the punishment handed out to Tan Sri Annuar (Musa)."
As for the controversial comments Annuar made on his Facebook post, Azzudin said: "The FAM is distancing ourselves from the statements made by him on the LionsXII, because those were made in his personal capacity. We will not comment on the matter."
Official ACL Update
Former champions Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors and Gamba Osaka both registered timely first wins of the AFC Champions League this week as the Group Stage of the 2012 edition reached the halfway point with Al Jazira and Al Ittihad maintaining the only 100% records.
Last year’s beaten finalists Jeonbuk ended Buriram United’s perfect record in Group H as first half goals from Lee Dong-gook and substitute Seo Sang-min ensured the K-League champions bounced back from beginning the new continental campaign with back-to-back 5-1 defeats.
With J.League champions Kashiwa Reysol and Chinese Super League champions Guangzhou Evergrande sharing a goalless draw in Japan, 2006 champions Jeonbuk moved within three points of Thai treble winners Buriram, who saw their lead at the top cut to two points.
“Having won three points, we are happy but we know that there is a long road ahead. I do not believe we are playing at our best due to injuries,” said Jeonbuk coach Lee Heung-sil.
“We are certainly confident about our chances in the next game at home. We will do our best to try and get more wins.”
Under the guidance of new coach Masanobu Matsunami, Gamba picked up their first win of 2012 as two penalties from Brazilian striker Rafinha and a third goal by former AFC Player of the Year Yasuhito Endo earned the J.League side a 3-1 win over Bunyodkor in Group E.
Matsunami took over as Gamba coach last week following the dismissal of Jose Carlos Serrao and, after picking up a point in their J.League encounter against Albirex on Saturday, the 2008 winners earned their first win of the season after defeats by Korea Republic’s Pohang Steelers and Adelaide United had threated the campaign of the 2008 champions.
"I am happy with my first win as manager, and this was brought by a team effort. But we are not the side to celebrate just because of one win. We will fix what we have to fix to move on to the next game,” said Matsunami.
"This victory gives us three points, which means a lot to us as our group is pretty even and competitive.”
Gamba’s win, coupled with Pohang’s 1-0 home victory over Australia’s Adelaide, leaves all four teams covered by just three points, with clear of Gamba and Bunyodkor three points off the pace.
Adelaide saw their 100% record ended as an uncharacteristic error from goalkeeper Eugene Galekovic handed Pohang a 1-0 win at a chilly Steelyard.
Galekovic had been the cornerstone of Adelaide's wins over Bunyodkor and Gamba, but the Reds captain failed to hold Hwang Jin-sung's 68th minute free-kick and Kim Dae-ho pounced to turn the ball home from close range.
UAE Pro League champions Al Jazira, meanwhile, have one foot in the Round of 16 after posting an impressive 2-1 win over Esteghlal in Iran, while two-time winners Al Ittihad edged closer to sealing passage from Group A after edging out debutants Baniyas 1-0 in Jeddah.
Brazilian Bare netted the winner with 18 minutes remaining as Al Jazira handed Esteghlal their first ever home defeat in the AFC Champions League to move five points clear of Iranian side at the top of the table.
Qatar’s Al Rayyan sit a further point off the pace after picking up their first points of the campaign as goals from Rodrigo Tabata, Daniel Goumou and Ahmed Alaadin secured a hard-fought 3-1 win over spirited AFC Cup winners Nasaf.
In Group B, Saudi Arabia’s Al Ittihad needed an 80th minute penalty from Naif Hazazi to end Baniyas’ unbeaten start to their maiden AFC Champions League campaign and also move a step closer to securing passage to the last 16 after reaching the semi-finals last year.
With Uzbekistan’s Pakhtakor beating Al Arabi of Qatar 3-1 thanks to late goals from Dilshod Sharofetdinov and Temurkhuja Abdukholiqov, Al Ittihad also moved five points clear of Baniyas and Pakhtakor with three games remaining.
Elsewhere, Japanese Emperor’s Cup winners FC Tokyo remained three points clear at the top of Group F alongside Ulsan Hyundai after extending their unbeaten start with a 1-1 draw with Beijing Guoan.
Aria Jasuru Hasegawa’s second goal of the campaign a minute before half-time at the Workers’ Stadium cancelled out Wang Xiaolong’s early penalty as Beijing were forced to settle for a second consecutive 1-1 draw at home.
With K-League side Ulsan coming from behind to earn a 1-1 draw at home to Australia’s Brisbane Roar, unbeaten duo Ulsan and FC Tokyo lead the way with winless pair Beijing and Brisbane both still in touching distance just three points off the pace.
Japan’s Nagoya Grampus, meanwhile, posted the first win in Group G after easing to a 3-0 victory over Tianjin Teda thanks to goals from Jungo Fijimoto, Keiji Tamada and Kensuke Nagai.
With the first five games in Group G ending all square after Central Coast Mariners and Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma shared a 1-1 draw in Australia; Nagoya moved two points clear at the top of the table.
In Group C, Brazilian striker Bruno Correa scored with a minute remaining as Iran's Sepahan secured a 2-1 win over recently-crowned Qatar champions Lekhwiya to maintain an unbeaten record.
Sepahan top the table three points clear of Al Ahli after midfielder Taisir Al Jassim scored one and set up another as the Saudi side beat Al Nasr 2-1 in Dubai.
Finally in Group D, Iran’s Piroozi pulled four points clear at the top of the table after beating Qatar’s Al Gharafa 3-0 in Doha, while Saudi champions Al Hilal were forced to settle for a third consecutive draw after coming from behind against Al Shabab Al Arabi as a tight contest finished 1-1 in Dubai.
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