Wednesday, June 30, 2010


If the truth is twisted, then what follows is a litany of half truths and appearance of sinking holes.

Right from from the onset, the participation of Harimau Muda in the Slovak league was riddled with more questions then answers.

So now add another chapter to the drama as the three coaches of the team are under investigation, suspended indefinitely as FAM try to uncover what semblance of truth that remains.

A five hour Technical Committee meeting today failed to provide answers, opting to shift the decision to another committee, the National Team Management Committee.

It is ironic as one sub- committee is shifting the decision making to another sub- committee.

If it was under the purview of the Nat Team Mgmt Committee, then why was this issue referred to the Technical Committee?

Who misled the esteemed members of this committee who were told after hearing out the three coaches that they do not have the power to hire or fire and that lies with the other committee, since it's chaired by HRH Sultan Ahmad Shah as President of FAM.

So was the five hours a complete waste of time since some members revealed no discussions on possible replacements never transpired but this was told to the members of the media later.

If it's a case of indiscipline then the right committee should be the DB.

More later as facts are being gathered.


Let's take a quick stroll through the advert. 

First to appear is Didier Drogba, weaving past Italian defenders before dinking the ball over a goalkeeper called Palermo (presumably the other unnamed defenders have names like Padova, Lecce and Chievo on the backs of their shirts). Drogba, of course, then broke an elbow in a warm-up game with the Ivory Coast meaning he could only make the bench for the Elephants' opening game against Portugal. A draw, a defeat and victory over North Korea later and Drogba and co were on their way home.

Next to appear, clearing Drogba's shot off the line (and sparking a future full of talk shows and dancing girls), is Fabio Cannavaro. The Azzurri's World Cup-winning captain was arguably culpable for Paraguay's goal in Italy's first game and caught napping for Slovakia's third in the final group fixture. Italy, below New Zealand and bottom of the group, were out.

Next up is Wayne Rooney, chesting the ball down and running at France defenders (called things like Rennes and Metz if Nike's Italian naming system runs true). It's pretty-much universally agreed that Rooney had a nightmare tournament, and England exited in miserable fashion at the weekend. Still, Rooney certainly had a better tournament than Theo Walcott (the intended target of Rooney's pass in the ad), who did not get picked in Fabio Capello's 23.

The pass is picked off by Franck Ribéry (while Walcott is marked by Patrice Evra) and little needs to be added to the tales of woe from the France camp this tournament: one goal, one point, out. Not to mention the feuds that erupted in South Africa, at which Evra was at the centre (of at least one, anyway).

Landon Donovan and Tim Howard are next up, looking smug as they flick through the papers bringing news of Rooney's misery. And though that means a slight upturn in fortunes – the USA at least made the knockout stages with Donovan scoring a couple – there's nothing to look too smug about. They too are out.

After Rooney tracks back and prevents Ribéry romping through on goal (remember, this isn't reality) Cesc Fábregas, flanked by Andrés Iniesta and Gerard Pique, grumpily toss the tabloids over their shoulders. It's pushing it a bit at this stage but Pique suffered a bloody nose in the group stage, Iniesta hasn't reached his admittedly vertiginous heights, while Fábregas has played a grand total of 59 minutes in Spain's four games. Still, Spain are in the quarter-finals where they face Paraguay.

Next, after everyone calls their baby Wayne and Rooney beats Roger Federer at table tennis (why would Roger Federer be good at table tennis? It's like expecting him to be good at badminton. Though, thinking about it, he probably is quite good at badminton), we see Ronaldinho producing stepover after stepover. All the stepovers in the world, though, couldn't get him into the Brazil squad. If la Seleção win the thing, he'll have played no part.

And for the grand finale we see Ronaldo romping past Dutch defenders. He didn't romp past many Spanish defenders last night, though, and Portugal are heading home, leaving Nike's Spanish contingent the sole survivors of the Nike Curse. Roque Santa Cruz and co must fancy their chances.

Nike's ill-starred campaign is not the only one to have carried something of a curse. Marks & Spencer's advertising during the tournament featured Steven Gerrard, Matthew Upson, Emile Heskey and also the hapless Walcott, while the 'Curse of the Gillette Three' was a talking point last December. 

Within the space of a few days Thierry Henry transformed himself from likeable, if slightly smug, va-va-voomer to Biggest Cheat In The World Ever following his handball against Ireland, Tiger Woods' life unravelled following his 2am car crash, and, slightly further down the scale admittedly, Roger Federer crashed out of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in the, er, semi-finals.

And, away from Association Football, there's also the much-feared Madden Curse.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Cardiff City have called-off a proposed pre-season tour to Malaysia until next season, the club have confirmed.

The Championship club were to embark on a summer trip to Kuala Lumpur after Cardiff were saved by a £6m investment from a Malaysian consortium.

The Malaysian national side were due to host the Bluebirds and boss Dave Jones recently returned from a reconnaissance mission but decided to reschedule.

Jones said: "This summer we've decided to revert to our alternative plans."

Instead Cardiff have invited the Malaysia national team to hold their training camp at their facilities in south Wales in preparation for the Asian Games in China in November this year.

There are two schools of thought available here. Perhaps Dave Jones was concerned about the 'logistics` i.e. level of training facilities, standard of opposition, travel burdens etc but you`d think those things would be looked at prior to the public announcement of a trip? Would it represent a slap-in-the-face to the Malaysians to so openly reject an open invitation to their country?

Alternatively, and perhaps more likely is that money issues are behind the decision. Whilst it would surely create more media attention/buzz to have the Bluebirds tour the Far East and face the Malaysian National side, there are a number of additional costs and we may not be able to get all the right pieces in place in time.

Cardiff, who have enjoyed successive pre-season tours to Portugal, have already confirmed three pre-season friendlies.

Jones' men travel to Bath City on 8 July and League One new boys Notts County on 24 July before hosting Spanish giants Deportivo La Coruna at the Cardiff City Stadium on 31 July.

But Cardiff have abandoned their summer tour due to logistical and timing reasons to play more friendlies in the UK.

"After a great trip to Malaysia, we can see that the opportunities and benefits to the club would be much bigger if we have the tour next year," said Jones.

Friday, June 25, 2010


The MACC launched an investigation with regards to a sponsorship deal in BAM and are investigating a 'particular individual.'

Read the exclusive by Haresh Deol in The Malay Mail, June 25 edition.

Let's hope MACC looks into who has been pocketing the earnings from BAM Villa as well.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Two Harimau Muda coaches, Azrai Khor and Azman Eusoff were suspended from coaching the team upon their return from a three month training stint from Slovakia.
And it is learnt that it has to do with "coffee shop" talk by the duo and another coach, who was sent packing from Slovakia during the stint.

It is believed that the trio had often spoke about the FAM policies and held "healthy" discussions pertaining to whats happening to Malaysian football, akin to what staff at Wisma FAM do when they sit at the mamak stall across FAM.

The stooge carried the tales back to the all powerful administration who opted to suspend the duo pending the Technical Committee meeting next week.

So why the Technical Committee and not the Disciplinary Board?

Saturday, June 19, 2010


There will be a six way battle for the Deputy Presidents post at the FAM Congress next month.

While incumbent Khairy Jamaluddin has declined to seek re-election, there is no shortage of candidates for the two Deputy President's positions.

Dato Redzuan Sheikh Ahmad is the other serving DP and has been re-nominated but it is learnt that he will decline the nomination at a press conference said to be scheduled next Wednesday,

While former DP Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah is in the fray as one of the six candidates, it is learnt that he received just two nominations due to his late notification of interest as the affiliates had already submitted their list earlier.

In contrast Tan Sri Annuar Musa received nine nominations and is favoured to go through together with Tengku Abdullah.

The other candidates in the fray are former Perlis MB Datuk Shahidan Kassim, current vice president Datuk Che Mat Jusoh and Selangor FA Deputy President Datuk Mokhtar Ahmad.

The vice presidents contest will see 12 candidates for the four positions. Trying to defend their seats are Datuk Che Mat Jusoh and Datuk Appandi Hamzah. Two other VP's Datuk Gulzar and Hj Ahmad had quit before their term was up.

The front runner is FA Selangor Sec Gen Datuk Hamidin Ahmad who received 12 nominations.

Friday, June 18, 2010


Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas, coming off a shocking 1-0 loss to Switzerland, was already feeling bad enough. Then his girlfriend, TV sports reporter Sara Carbonero, conducted a live interview with him on the field after the match.

Carbonero wanted to know how Casillas lost the match, asking "How did you muck that up?"
Casillas: "I don't know what to say. I don't know if this defeat will have consequences. The dressing room is fed up."

But it may have been Carbonero's fault. She was standing a few yards behind Spain's goal during the game,  and irate fans claim her presence distracted Casillas from making the save.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Rooney poses for picture with offensive four-letter word written on shoe

Wayne Rooney put his foot in it by sending a four-letter message to the world when he posed for official pictures with the England team.
The Man United striker was photographed with the legend “FCUK U” scrawled across the instep of his left shoe in black letters.
Wayne’s graffiti went unnoticed until the release of this shot taken at the Sun City golf course on Friday.
It seems it may have been some kind of in-joke since Rooney also had the word “FLOYD” penned on the outside of his other shoe.
Wayne’s antics are likely to bemuse his critics who question his temperament under pressure.
French Connection UK (FCUK) said: “We’re happy he’s supporting us. We hope he finds the FCUKing net.”

Monday, June 14, 2010


Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin will not seek re-election as the deputy-president of the Malaysian Football Association (FAM) next month. He announced the decision via his twitter today, a move seemingly reflective of his disillusionment with the state of the nation's footballing body.

"I wish I was. But I'm not. So I'm not seeking re-election next month. The unspoken is self-evident," said Khairy in his twitter.

Khairy was responding via his tweets to friendly suggestions that he used his post to inject some life back in the country's football.

The suggestions were made amid a live telecast of the World Cup game between South Korea and Greece.

South Korea, once a "nobody" in football and a country Malaysia had no problem beating in the past, had gone on to defeat the 2004 European Champion by two goals.

Impossible task to uplift Malaysian football
FAM had elected Khairy, a self-professed football fanatic, as deputy-president at the body's 44th congress in September 2007. His term ends on July 31.

He had replaced the Pahang regent Tengku Mahkota Pahang Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah.

His appointment was made during the tenure of then premier Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, Khairy's father-in-law.

With high idealism and a passion for football, Malaysian football fans had high hopes that Khairy would put Malaysia back as Southeast Asia's top footballing nation.

But it had proven to be an impossible task. Perhaps beyond his control, the FAM continued to be a disappointment.

Despite the constant injection of millions of ringgit into the body, fans are still forced to cope with poor football domestically and internationally.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Malaysia vying for Best World Cup Song


While 32 teams from five continents prepare to battle for football supremacy, another equally fierce contest is taking place off the field - vying for the title of the Best World Cup Song!

With more than 300 participants, mostly amateurs who may not have the global reach of Shakira, the entries at are definitely creating a buzz around the world.

A group from Klang Valley called Heart & Soul has also gotten into this World Cup groove to win the hearts of music-loving football fans and send the soccer spirit soaring.

Malaysian entry Africa’s Moment (Ke Nako Ke Nako) entered the online World Cup chart ranking at 150 and has since made its way up to the mid-70s. Written by two members of the Heart & Soul group, 

Tony Pereira and his wife Debbie Leon, the song is about the first World Cup to be held in South Africa.

“Malaysia may not be participating in the World Cup proper, but football fever is as strong here as anywhere else. We hope Malaysians will listen to our song and help us do our country proud,” said Pereira.

"Our song highlights the significance of South Africa hosting the tournament. Ke Nako is African for It is time. It is the official theme for the World Cup.

“Football belongs to the world and the excitement the World Cup evokes is truly unifying.

"We feel excited for Africa. Plus, Nelson Mandela is such an inspiration and this song pays tribute to him too.”

Astro FourFourTwo programme host Jason Dasey, a fan, had invited the group to perform at the Astro's show.

The group comprises Andrew Manassee (guitar), Carol Leon and Debbie Leon (vocals), Ryan Tong - who is just 17 and plays the bass, Leslie Leon (keyboards and vocals) and Tony Pereira (drums and percussion).

“We need a lot of support as we are competing with other countries,” says Andrew. “We think our song is great and we are asking Malaysians to visit the website and listen to Africa’s Moment. The more hits we get, the higher our ranking.”

To lend your support for this unique World Cup bid by Malaysia, click on the Malaysian flag at and then listen to Africa’s Moment.