Harimau Muda duo edge closer to Japanese dream

FC Ryukyu have confirmed their interest in acquiring the services of Wan Zack Haikal and Wan Zaharulnizam for the new season following their successful trials at the club in 2012

Harimau Muda duo, Wan Zack Haikal Wan Noor and Wan Zaharulnizam Zakaria could soon be heading to Japan to ply their trade there, the New Straits Times has reported.

Last June, both players attended a 19-day trial with Okinawa-based third division outfit FC Ryukyu, and the club is now said to be making efforts to add both players to its playing roster, for the upcoming season that starts in March.

During a recent football conference in Japan, the club’s officials approached Harimau Muda coach Ong Kim Swee to make their intentions known.

“The club is keen on Wan Zack and Wan Zaharulnizam. However, we did not discuss details in Japan,” said Kim Swee.

“If the club wants them, they need to approach FAM (Football Association of Malaysia) for further action.”

The Malacca born coach however was quick to stress that if the deals do go through, the players must not forget their responsibilities towards the national team.

“We encourage our players to play abroad as the experience will turn them into better players. However, those abroad must be available for national team assignments.”

Kim Swee will head a 25-man Harimau Muda squad that will leave for a 15-day tour of Brisbane today.

The team will play a total of four friendlies during their stay in Australia. They will kick the tour off against Gold Coast Sharks this Saturday, before taking on Sunshine Coast Fire (January 29), Brisbane Olympic (February 2) and A-League’s Brisbane Rovers (February 5).

This tour is part of the team’s preparations for December’s SEA Games in Myanmar.


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