Monday, July 16, 2018


What Next For Djadjang After Medan Axe

Back in 2014 it seemed Djadjang Nurdjaman could do no wrong. He had just guided his beloved Persib to their first Indonesia Super League title and was looking forward to helping the club he once played for conquer Asia as they prepared to compete in the AFC Cup the following year. Djanur, as he is nicknamed, was going places. Or so it seemed.

The first set back came the following year when the AFC announced the Sumedang born coach would not be allowed to take charge of the team in the Asian club competition because he didn't have the appropriate coaching badges. In fact domestic club regulations also require coaches to have been trained to a minimum standard but as is too often the case in Indonesia the implementation of these rules is not always consistent.

As it happened the 2015 season was brought to an abrupt halt when FIFA suspended the PSSI and Djanur, at a loose end, was farmed out to Inter Milan to learn his trade as it were and finish off his badges.

Suitably qualified and, you would think, bursting with new ideas following his stint observing one of Europe's finest clubs on the training field, Djanur returned to Indonesia and Persib. He was soon to learn, however, what works well in Italy may not work so well in Indonesia. Despite boasting a team including new additions such as Michael Essien and Carlton Cole Persib were a club in off the field turmoil with an interfering management wanting their input on the eleven which took the field and Djanur just wasn't strong enough to face down the different factions.

A 2-2 draw at home to PS TNI was the final straw and the supporters quickly vented their fury against their hapless coach. It seemed his position was untenable and asresults didn't improve so the anger on the terraces and social media increased. Djanur wanted to resign but he wasn't allowed to which pretty much summed up his position. Here was a coach lacking the strength to handle a febrile atmosphere being told he had to stay and he accepting it.

Eventually of course Djanur was allowed to leave the club but only when a new coach had been found but his reputation was undoubtedly tarnished. 

It was therefore something of a surprise when PSMS, one of the biggest names in the Indonesian games but lately fallen on bad times, turned to the former Persib man to guide them to promotion in 2017.

PSMS of course were promoted, finishing runners up behind Persebaya and Djanur had another success to add to his resume. But starved of finances the team from Medan have struggled back in the top flight with all their points coming from home wins and, most recently, four defeats on the spin. Unlike Persib however no one at PSMS was willing to give their coach the benefit of the doubt and last week he was sacked after a run of four straight losses including home turf humiliations against Persipura and Persib.

What next for the coach? In Indonesia as elsewhere the best coaches are rarely out of the game for long but doubts remain as to how good Djanur really is despite his impressive pedigree and whatever lessons he learned in Milan. His next appointment could tell us alot.

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