Syamer bent on regaining first team spot with Malaysia

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Syamer Kutty, Malaysia, 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup
What a massive difference a short few months make for Syamer Kutty Abba but the youngster is relishing the fight for a starting XI berth.

When Syamer was last in the senior national team, he was a pivotal figure in Malaysia's run to the final of the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup. He was an ever-present member of the starting line-up, chosen by Tan Cheng Hoe to being seven out of eight of the matches that Malaysia played in the tournament.

Syamer's grew from match to match in the tournament and was arguably one of the best players of the tournament and perhaps even the strongest performer of all the central midfielders in the tournament. He only narrowly missed out of being part of the official Best XI but it was a tournament which he enhanced his reputation.

Missing out the Airmarine Cup back in March to be part of the Under-23 side, Syamer lost his hold on the central midfield position alongside Akram Mahinan. Cheng Hoe still retains the trust in the 21-year-old but has chosen to rely on Halim Saari and Nor Azam Azih ahead of the Penang-born player.

"Before this I'm in the starting eleven, now I'm on the bench. So I have to keep training harder to improve every single part of my game. Now what is good for the team is the most important. For me, I only need to focus on working hard and show that I'm worth being in the starting line-up again.

"I need to play and I want to play. But it is up to the coach's decision. I will always give my best and try to be in the team," Syamer told Goal.

The Johor Darul Ta'zim player understands that it is always hard to break into a winning team as it was for other players eyeing his place during that Suzuki Cup run. Yet, there was no defeatist attitude in him to just give up from convincing Cheng Hoe to change his mind.

The big 7-1 win in the first leg does however give Cheng Hoe the opportunity to rotate his team around for Tuesday's second leg. A chance that could see Syamer once again taking to the field from the first whistle and attempts to prove to the head coach that he is still the best choice as one of the midfield two option.


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