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FAM looking into hosting both legs of Malaysia-Timor Leste tie again

09:13 BST 17/04/2019
Timor Leste's Junior Aparecido (left) and Malaysia's Baddrol Bakhtiar 2016
The Malaysian FA is looking to host both legs of the Malaysia-Timor Leste round one preliminary World Cup/Asian Cup qualification matches this June.

BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter

Malaysia have been pitted against Timor Leste in the preliminary stages of the World Cup/Asian Cup qualifiers once again, following the draw that was held at the AFC House in Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.

In the preliminary round of the previous Asian Cup qualification cycle in 2016, Malaysia were drawn against the same opponents as well, eventually winning the tie 6-0 on aggregate.

Interestingly, both matches were then hosted by Malaysia, at the Tan Sri Dato' Haji Hassan Yunos Stadium, as Timor Leste did not have adequate facilities to host their leg of the tie.

And in the 2018 AFF Championship, they were forced to host one their two 'home' matches at the Kuala Lumpur Football Stadium in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, due the same issue.

When met by the press after the draw, the Malaysian FA (FAM) secretary-general Stuart Ramalingam admitted that the association will look into the possibility of hosting both legs of the tie once again.

"I need to check [Timor Leste FA's readiness] first, but it's ultimately down to them. If they can host the match in Timor Leste, I don't see why they would want to do it somewhere else.

"If their facilities are still not up to AFC standards, we'll be glad to host both matches. They've played a lot of matches in Malaysia, the country is like their second home ground already!" he stated.

The two matches, as well as the other preliminary matches, are set to be held on June 6 and 11, with the five-day period coinciding with the first week of the Islamic celebration of Aidilfitri.

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