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Friday, August 02, 2013

Heads to roll as Sabah prepare for new season

New Sabah Times

KOTA KINABALU: Heads are set to roll as the Sabah Football Association (SFA) gets the ball rolling in preparing the team for the new season. SFA Secretary General Alijus Hj Sipil said they already have the names of players who are to be retained or otherwise from the current squad. However, Alijus said it is inappropriate to reveal any names as all the players are still under contract with the SFA. “The names will only be announced to the media when the time is right.

We want to make sure that contracts with all the players are respected. Any termination or extension of contracts will be done professionally,” said Alijus yesterday. According to Alijus, they had conducted a team management meeting that was chaired by chairman Datuk Osman Jamal, who is also the SFA Vice President I, yesterday. During the meeting, he said, the main agenda discussed was a report from their new coach Seslija Milomir.

 “We have received a report from our new head coach (Milomir) pertaining to the forming of the State team for the new season that includes selection of players, selection of fitness coach as well as our pre-season preparations. In the report, Alijus said Milomir also submitted the list of players whose contracts will not be renewed from the current squad. 

“This include local players, local imports and foreign imports,” said Alijus. “We have also decided to give him (Milomir) a full mandate in looking for suitable players for the team. For the record, in the just concluded season, SFA hired eight local imports and two foreign. The eight are goalkeepers Shahril Sa’ari, Syamsuri Mustapha, defenders Shahril Faizal, Wan Azwari wan Noor, Hafizulldin Mohd Noor, midfielder Mohd Fazilidin Khalid and strikers Khairul Izwan Khalid and Wan Mohd Aliff Wan Jasmi. The two foreign players are Malian Koh Traore, who emerged as the team’s top scorer with 25 goals, including one in the FA Cup, and midfielder Abdelfateh Safi, who signed to replace the crocked Englishman Rhys Weston midway through the season.

 The local players are Irwan Jamil, Rosdin Wasli, Sumardi Hajalan, Alto Linus, Hardy Charles Parsi, Razid Gapar, Shahrul Azhar Ture, Julamri Muhammad, Shahrudin Yakup, Radzi Hussin, Mohd Farid Saibun, Mohd Ibnu Kassim, Zainizam Marjan, Jufrey Omopor and Leopold Alfonso Otong. The likes of Didie Arizal Ibrahim, Dendy Lowa, Sabri Sahar, Zul Mansshah Aling, and Rexjeson Pitirus, all from the President’s Cup squad also featured for the team occasionally.

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