Khairy Jamaluddin: Improving local football more important than hiring world class coach

The Youth and Sports Minister gave his personal opinion on hiring a new coach for the national team and developing local football

Spending money on developing local football is better than spending money to find a world-class coach for the national team, says Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

With the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) believed to be short-listing some of the biggest names in football to replace Datuk K. Rajagopal, Jamaluddin stated that the FAM has the right to choose anyone to coach the national team.

“Personally, the FAM can choose anyone because if we have reached the stage where we qualify for the Olympics or the World Cup, then we really need a world class coach,” Khairy told Bernama. "But I also think that if our talent pool is limited, it is better that we spend money to develop the local football first."

The national team has been linked to several top class coaches, such as Philippe Troussier, Zdenak Zeman and Marcel Desailly. Ong Kim Swee is currently the interim manager of the national team, after Rajaogpal’s contract was not renewed last December following some poor displays throughout 2013.

In other news, the Youth and Sports Minister has confirmed that the ministry has agreed to give the Young Tigers RM2 million, to enable them to compete in a league in Queensland Australia.

“Datuk Ong Kim Swee, the Young Tigers coach has discussed with me about sending the team to play (in the) Queensland league, and we agreed to support half of the cost for them to go there,” he added.