Rooting for women’s football

The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) has decided to disband the women’s national football team.

FAM secretary-general Datuk Azzuddin Ahmad said the current team would be disbanded to focus on identifying new talented players from the grassroots to build a stronger team.

He added that senior players with vast experience would be considered for coaching jobs in states.

“They will assist the FAM to identify talented players at the grassroots level,” he told reporters after opening a women’s coaching course organised with the cooperation of FIFA.

He said before forming a new women’s national squad, FAM would focus on programmes aimed at developing women’s football at the grassroots level throughout the country, to unearth more players.

Azzuddin said development programmes at the grassroots level had already started in April last year but such programmes involved only the Klang Valley and Negeri Sembilan.

Meanwhile, former national skipper Angela Kais, 31, said though she was saddened by the decision to disband the women’s national team, she welcomed FAM’s decision to focus on grassroots development.

“Since the team has been disbanded, we will have no team to play but since we will still play a part in development programmes organised by the FAM, it will us a chance to contribute our part, especially to identify new players,” he said.

The coaching course meanwhile, saw 31 representatives selected by their respective football associations, except Perlis, Kelantan, Terengganu and Perak, attending the five-day course.

The course will be conducted by two FIFA officials, namely former Germany national team coach Manika Staab and FIFA officer Samuel Schweingruber.

The Malaysian women’s national football team’s outing in the 2009 Laos SEA Games was their last international competition.

– Bernama