FAM made the right call by not extending Rajagopal’s contract, say Goal readers

A six-day poll revealed that 68 per cent of Goal readers agree with the Football Association of Malaysia’s decision to not extend Rajagopal’s contract beyond 2013

An astounding 68 per cent of Goal readers feel that Datuk K. Rajagopal’s contract with the Malayan Tigers should not be extended beyond 2013.

The Football Association of Malaysia had a meeting last month to discuss the future of the 57-year-old as Head Coach of Harimau Malaya and have decided against extending his contract that expires at the end of this year.

This was in response to the team’s poor performance that saw losses to club sides in Australia and Japan; which included a 5-0 thumping at the hands of Tokyo Verdy who play their football in the second tier.

Rajagopal also led the team to a draw with Thailand’s Chonburi FC and defeats to European giants, Chelsea and Barcelona.

The latest hurrah of the Malaysia national squad saw the best outing of the Malayan Tigers in recent months as they managed to hold off a complete Barcelona side at the Shah Alam Stadium, if only for awhile.

It took the Catalan giants 33 minutes to open the deadlock, which was cancelled out within minutes with a strike from Amri Yahyah.

Rajagopal showed that he could play a defensive game if needed and his seeds bore fruit after Barca were forced to play the long ball on several occasions.

Barcelona only managed to pull off a 3-1 win.

Regardless of the performance that night, the FAM are adamant to stick to their decision that will see a new coach take over the helm of Malaysia’s football.

The next major stage for the Malayan Tigers will be the 2015 Asian Cup qualifier against Bahrain on October 15 but they will have two friendlies versus China (Sept 10) and UAE  (Oct 10) to tune up for the big game.

Malaysia are currently third in Group D with three points after a 2-0 defeat at Qatar and a 2-1 win against Yemen.