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Amirudin tells fans to buy tickets, a jersey or two to help Selangor's sustainability push

06:45 EAT 27/12/2019
Amirudin Shari, 22122019
Fans have a major role in ensuring that their clubs are financially sustainable, said Selangor MB and former Red Giants manager Amirudin Shari.

BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter

Former Selangor manager Amirudin Shari may not be directly involved with the Super League outfit anymore, but his state government is keen to help the 33-time Malaysia Cup champions move towards financial independence and sustaimability.

The Selangor state Menteri Besar (chief minister) Dato' Seri is not directly involved with the team anymore beyond providing most of the capital for the 33-time Malaysia Cup champions' operations these days, but in 2015 and 2016 he was the Red Giants' team manager, thanks to the Selangor state government more hands-on involvement back then, as well as his political post as state youth and sports exco member.

Amirudin as manager back in 2016. Photo from his Facebook page

His first season as manager ended with the Shah Alam-based outfit lifting their long elusive 33rd Malaysia Cup title, but the following year saw middling performances capped off by an acrimonious split between the association executive committee (exco) and the state government, one that ensured that the government never took a direct involvement again even until now, when the new exco has mended the relationship.

Amirudin's political career however has taken off, and he has been the Selangor head of government since 2018, but he still has friends in the footballing industry, as shown by his involvement in a Professional Footballers Association of Malaysia (PFAM) charity golf event last Sunday, as the event patron.

When met by the press during the event, he was asked his take on the Red Giants, whether the team is capable of becoming sustainable in the near future.

For 2020, the state will be providing the club with an initial fund of RM10 million, but club officials meanwhile have at different times mentioned to Goal their aim of becoming financially sustainable in five or ten years.

"For the time being, the club still needs government funding, but it can't be for long. Clubs can't depend on just one funder. They need a business plan, but no club [in Malaysia] has a complete and sound business plan that is proven.

"I've often been in discussions with the Selangor exco and they've shown me that they do have a plan, but it remains to be seen whether it is workable. However, it is a work in progress.

"But what's more important is educating the supporters about their role in the plan; they need to allow the business plan to take place. They need to support the team consistently, win or lose. They have to buy match tickets and merchandise throughout the season, instead of only when the team reaches the semis and the final. They can't not attend matches when the team is not doing well. The fans have a role to play in the monetary and financial cycles, and they absolutely have to be involved," explained the 39-year old politician.

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