Friday, November 13, 2015


Persib Pay Price For Football's Continued Woes

In the last 12 months Persib have won the Indonesia Super League and the President's Cup. Throw the Padang Mayor's Cup and arguably you have their most successful era for a quarter of a century.

While it comes to professionalism they are streets ahead of their rivals even they are being hampered by the ongoing suspension of Indonesia by FIFA and the dispute between the government and the PSSI.

Persib's preparations for the upcoming General Sudirman Cup have been hampered by overspills from the disarray in football and the biggest without doubt concerns one of the few shining lights in Indonesia over the last 12 months or so.

Zulham Zamrun signed for Persipura at the start of the 2015 ISL season but when that was shut down like other players he was left twiddling his thumbs. The Black Pearls sat out the President Cup so he joined Persib for the duration, helping the side to go on and win the trophy.

With a window between the President Cup and the General Sudirman Cup Zamrun joined amateur side Persipare Pare Pare for the Habibie Cup in South Sulawesi, a local event that featured a number of big name boots for hire.

Even though Persipura decided to enter the General Sudirman Cup they still allowed Zamrun to stay 'on loan' with Persib. It was then announced he was in fact injured and could be out for up to eight months.

In a double whammy, inspirational defender Vladimir Vujovic announced he would not be returning to Persib. He preferred to look for a new club overseas rather than commit to another short term period of gainful employment and rumours were suddenly rife another key part of the ISL winning side, Makan Konate, would also be looking abroad for a regular pay packet. He will however be available for the group stage games, Persib have been drawn with Persela, Surabaya United, PS TNI and Pusamania Borneo in what is effectively a non FIFA recognised tournament. The story doing the rounds is Konate has been signed by a Malaysian side though which one is not yet clear.

Much has been made in recent days of a sponsorship Persib have in place with an insurance company so were Konate to be injured in the upcoming competition no one should be too worried about compensation. But how would the Malaysian side feel if he does get injured? Where would that leave the deal?

Players like Konate and Vujovic have shown Persib tremendous loyalty over the last nine months, staying with the club even though their season ended prematurely. They could have gone earlier in the year and surely been within their rights to do so. They may have been under contract to Persib for the whole year but are those contracts still valid given the lack of recognition extended by FIFA to Indonesia? And what of Zamrun? Who picks up the tab for his lengthy medical treatment over the next few months.

Persib's first game in the GSC is on Sunday when they take on Persela but unfortunately they go into the competition hampered by the loss of two of their big names and in the knowledge a third will have half an eye on next season. Hardly the best preparation but that is the legacy of Indonesian football at the moment.

M Ridwan, their influential wide man is also missing according to some reports but at least Persib's Bobotoh have something to look forward to. The name of Gian Zola has a fine pedigree in world football and has also been making waves in Indonesia youth football circles in recent years. He scored in a recent friendly and has been called up for the group stage games in Surabaya!

I got insider news that Kelantan going to sign a Malian striker, could be Makan Konate
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that is one of the clubs I hear he has been linked with
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