Local football calendar reshuffle likely to suit Harimau Malaya

FAM, MFL to discuss soon to ensure all football competitions could be completed within the stipulated time

THE local football calendar could witness a revamp to ensure that the national football squad (Harimau Malaya) has ample of time to prepare for the 2020 Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup Football Tournament at the end of the year.

Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) secretary-general Stuart Ramalingam revealed that the national body will hold a thorough discussion with Malaysian League administrator, Malaysian Football League (MFL), soon to ensure all football competitions including the Premier and Super Leagues as well as the

Malaysia Cup could be completed within the stipulated time.

“I know many people raised their concerns on whether the national team will have ample of time to make preparations for the AFF Suzuki Cup tourney, and therefore we will try our best to ensure all competitions that have been postponed since March 16 could be completed before November.

“We are still waiting for approval from the National Security Council to restart the Malaysian League in September, but hopefully it could be held earlier to give enough time for Tan Cheng Hoe to prepare his best squad for the tournament,” he told Bernama on Sunday.

Recently, an AFF spokesperson revealed that the body would continue with the biennial regional football tournament after engaging all of its affiliates despite the threat of Covid-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, Stuart revealed that the US-based youngster, Wan Kuzri Wan Kamal would not be joining the national Under-18 (U-18) centralised training due to travel restrictions as the Covid-19 pandemic is still prevalent in the world.

He, however, pointed out that the national body would try its level best to help Brad Maloney’s side to get Wan Kuzri for the Asian Football Confederation U-19 Championship in Uzbekistan in October once the government has lifted the ban.

Wan Kuzri’s presence is expected to boost the U-18 squad’s chances of qualifying for the 2021 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Indonesia. Wan Kuzri, who is the younger brother of national ace Wan Kuzain, plays for Sporting Kansas City in the Major League Soccer in the US. — Bernama