Three Friendlies Best Platform For Harimau Malaysia To Improve FAM-FIFA Ranking
PETALING JAYA, June 11 (Bernama) — Three Oceania Tour international ‘A’ class friendlies, starting next month are the best platforms for the Harimau Malaya Squad to improve the position of national football which is now languishing in 173rd place in the world in FIFA ranking for June.
FAM deputy president Datuk Abdul Mokhtar Ahmad said the tour was the best opportunity for the chief coach of the squad, Datuk Ong Kim Swee to spruce up the pattern of play and understanding among the 24 selected players.
He said this at the monthly media conference of the national squad for June, before the breaking of fast between the media and the FAM executive committee and the Harimau Malaysia squad at a hotel here, Saturday.
Sharing the same view was Kim Swee who regarded the tour as important for him to forge a strong team because the players would only come together again in early November after the Malaysia League ended.
“We must meet our target during this tour of achieving a positive outcome and getting a strong team. Nevertheless, for me, the three matches are not going to be easy.
“We know the nations in Oceania are very far from one another. If they play many matches, I believe their ranking will be higher,” Kim Swee stressed.
In the same development, FAM secretary-general Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin revealed that the national squad would participate in four friendlies, namely, two each in September and October in the FIFA calender.
“We are expected to be in away action against Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia while facing Afghanistan, on home turf, but all depend on Kim Swee’s decision.
“This is because we have a strong possibility of meeting the three teams (Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia) at the AFF Cup Football Competition (in December),” he said.
Skuad Harimau Malaysia left for Brisbane, Australia tonight and they were expected to take part in three matches, namely, against Papua New Guinea at the Sir John Guise Stadium, Papua New Guinea on June 17.
This would be followed up with a meeting with New Caledonia at the Numa-Daly Magenta Stadium on June 22 before facing Fiji at the Prince Charles Park Stadium, Fiji on June 26.
List of 24 players:
Goalkeeper: Izham Tarmizi Roslan (Johor Darul Ta’zim/JDT); Mohd Farhan Abu Bakar (Kedah); Khairul Fahmi Che Mat (Kelantan)
Defence: Mohd Aidil Zafuan Abdul Radzak, Mohd Fadhli Shas, Junior Eldstal, S. Kunanlan, Muhammad Fazly Mazlan, Mahalli Jasuli (JDT); Muhd Shahrom Abdul Kalam (Selangor); Khair Muhammad Jefri Jones (Melaka United)
Midfield: S. Chanturu, Mohd Amri Yahyah (JDT); Mohd Azrif Nasrulhaq Badrul Hisham (Selangor); Baddrol Bakhtiar, Muhamad Amirul Hisyam Awang Kechik, Ahmad Fakri Saarani (Kedah); Brendan Gan (Kelantan); D. Christie Jayaseelan (Felda United); Abdul Latiff Suhaimi (PDRM)
Strikers: Mohd Zaquan Adha Abdul Radzak (JDT II); Mohd Amirulhadi Zainal (JDT); Ahmad Hazwan Bakri (Selangor); S. Kumaahran (Penang).