Friday, August 23, 2013


Hariss Prefers Malaysia Over Portugal

According to this story Singapore's Hariss Harun is happy to turn down a move to Portugal to play in Malaysia.

Hariss' old man is quoted as saying “I feel it’s time for Hariss to move out of Singapore. He is only 23 and still has time to develop his career away from home. Maybe playing in Malaysia will teach him what life as a professional footballer is all about. He will learn to be independent and, after a season or two, he can then think what his next step should be. Hariss has served Singapore football well and has carried the team forward. Now, he should look elsewhere.”

Apparently there was an offer on the table from a club in Portugal but the player said something about not being able to accept the deal.

Does this guy want to be a top professional footballer or does he just want to be a big fish in a small pond?

Playing in Malaysia won't teach him jack shit about being a professional footballer that he can't learn in Singapore. Playing in Portugal will teach him a lot more!

Fandi Ahmad is often cited at times like this and it is worth recalling what he told me about his time in Europe. He said he wished he'd stuck around longer and made a go of it.

Hariss, and his old man, cannot expect any European team, to come along waving big Euros just because he has had a few good reviews in Southeast Asia. 

If he wants to fulfill his undoubted talent then he will need to take a step back to go forwards. Put himself in the European shop window. Play with better players.

Moving to Malaysia is the lazy option and shows lack of professional hunger and desire. rather like average English players content to draw large salaries at mid table clubs yet rarely threatening to break into the national team.

Maybe he, and his old man, feel they have made it in the heady waters of the Malaysia Super League and that is good enough for him and his career. Better the guarantee of rice today than the promise of steak tomorrow.

I wonder what Bernd Stang thinks of that level of ambition from a player he had identified as key to the national team. 

UPDATE - I understand money wasn't just the issue. The club concerned wanted him to join up in July which is pre season after all but that would have affected his national service which for Singaporeans is a very big deal and for Singaporean sports people seemingly an obstacle to their careers. 

Rearranging NS is apparently a pain in the butt and most Singaporeans would rather get the bloody thing done and dusted and move on.

Hariss decided to put NS first. At 23 he is perhaps starting to get a bit too old to be considered by European clubs and it remains to be seen whether or not another opportunity arises.

Thanks for the people who helped provide more background for this story  

'Hariss decided to put NS first.' he has to. even if he did disrupt, which would be the stupid thing to do, he would still have to do ns sometime in the future.
this is what bernd stange think
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