BY ZULHILMI ZAINAL Follow on Twitter
M-League organiser Football Malaysia LLP (FMLLP) has slammed Pahang for denying the official television broadcaster of the match from broadcasting its first leg semi-final FA Cup tie against Negeri Sembilan at home on Sunday.
The Elephants on Saturday issued a brief announcement on its social media that the match cannot be broadcast on television, ostensibly due to a renovation work on the Darulmakmur Stadium.
A few hourse later, FMLLP issued a statement that criticised the sudden decision, titled 'Fans want more But Pahang want Less', saying it will affect other teams in as well in the future.
"A partnership agreement signed between Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) and all teams to be part of Football Malaysia LLP (FMLLP) is the basis of everyone collectively working together to drive Malaysian football forward. This cooperation would also mean more income for each team via their participation in the Malaysian league.
"When teams do not adhere to the terms of this agreement the effect is felt by all stakeholders. Not just the team that does not comply. This is because whatever effects the league effects all components of it, including the other teams. We are all bound to each other to progress or fail as one.
"In not allowing a broadcast to be made of a match, especially one of such great significance as a cup semifinal, the effects are aplenty. Broadcast and commercial agreements may be affected as there will be lesser value to both.
"Team sponsors are affected as they do not get the exposure and eyeballs that a semifinal should bring. Fans are affected as not all fans of the teams involved are able to make it to the stadium. There are also elements of neutral fans who want to watch on with interest and the list goes on. What each team must realize is that a game, home or away, is not just about them. It involves everyone. This mindset must change for us to progress."
According to the statement, Pahang's decision could also derail all the good work that has been done in promoting professional football in Malaysia.
"We are on the right track. But these are the things that could derail it all. And when it doesn't happen, shall we blame FMLLP or are we going to look at things objectively and realize that these things are what is holding us back?" the statement pointed out.