Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Rombak Liga-M


ANNUAR (tengah) bergambar bersama para pemenang Anugerah Bola Sepak Kebangsaan 2011 di Shah Alam semalam.


"STRUKTUR Liga Bola Sepak Malaysia (Liga M) perlu dirombak bagi membolehkannya mendapat pengiktirafan di peringkat antarabangsa."

Demikian tegas Timbalan Presiden Persatuan Bola Sepak Malaysia (FAM), Tan Sri Annuar Musa, semalam.

Menurutnya, kelemahan struktur liga tempatan menyebabkan badan induk bola sepak negara serta pemain Malaysia sukar mendapat pengiktirafan di peringkat antarabangsa.

"Ramai yang tidak tahu, negeri-negeri serta pemain yang bermain dalam Liga Malaysia (Liga M) sebenarnya tidak layak bermain dalam Liga Juara-Juara Konfederasi Bola Sepak Asia (AFC).

"Di Eropah, pemain kita tidak layak menyertai kelab di sana, disebabkan Liga M tidak diurus secara profesional," katanya ketika berucap pada Majlis Anugerah Bola Sepak Kebangsaan di Shah Alam semalam.

Annuar berkata, mengikut peraturan AFC pada 2009, Liga M sepatutnya diuruskan oleh sebuah entiti yang terdiri daripada gabungan kelab dan persatuan negeri yang bersaing dalam liga tersebut serta diurus secara profesional.

"Namun berdasarkan perbincangan dengan anggota gabungan FAM, pengurusan di peringkat kelab dan persatuan negeri masih berada ditakuk lama dan terus mengharap pemberian geran tahunan daripada FAM," katanya.

Katanya, jika kelab dan persatuan negeri gagal diurus dengan baik, kesannya dapat dilihat pada pemain yang dilahirkan.

"Sebab itu, pemain terbaik di Malaysia ini sebenarnya hanya bertaraf sederhana di Asia. Kerana itu juga pemain kebangsaan sukar mendapat tempat bermain di Eropah," katanya.

Kenyataan Annuar itu merujuk kepada isu penyerang kebangsaan, Mohd. Safee Sali yang gagal mendapat permit kerja untuk beraksi bersama Cardiff City.

Masalah timbul berikutan pihak imigresen di United Kingdom mensyaratkan pemain yang mahu bermain dengan kelab di negara itu mestilah datangnya dari negara yang menduduki ranking 70 terbaik dunia dan Malaysia berada di ranking ke-146.

Norshahrul Pemain Terbaik

NORSHAHRUL (kiri) menerima anugerah MVP Supermokh daripada Timbalan Presiden FAM, Annuar Musa. Turut kelihatan ialah Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif F&N Holding Berhad, Ng Jui Sia (kanan).


NORSHAHRUL Idlan Talaha sekali lagi dinobatkan Pemain Paling Bernilai (MVP) Supermokh Liga Malaysia bagi musim 2011.

Penyerang Kelantan itu menerima pengiktirafan tersebut pada majlis tahunan Anugerah Bola Sepak Kebangsaan 100PLUS-Astro Arena-FAM 2011 di sebuah hotel terkemuka di ibu negara semalam.

Ini merupakan kali kedua berturut-turut Norshahrul, 24, menjulang anugerah tersebut selepas kali pertama menggenggamnya tahun lalu.

Musim lalu, anugerah itu dinamakan sebagai Pemain Paling Bernilai sebelum ditukar kepada Anugerah MPV Supermokh tahun ini.

Ia merupakan pengiktirafan tertinggi buat pemain bola sepak tempatan.

Norshahrul menewaskan rakan sepasukan, Khairul Fahmi Che Mat dan pemain Selangor, Safiq Rahim yang turut dicalonkan untuk menerima anugerah berprestij itu yang mengambil nama legenda bola sepak negara, Allahyarham Mokhtar Dahari.

Selain menerima anugerah tertinggi itu, Norshahrul turut terpilih untuk menerima anugerah Penyerang Terbaik Liga Malaysia sekali gus membawa pulang hadiah wang tunai RM5,000 serta trofi.

“Saya tidak sangka menang. Ia sangat hebat dan memang merupakan satu penghormatan yang amat besar bagi saya selepas memenangi anugerah pertama Supermokh ini.

“Kejayaan memenangi anugerah yang dinamakan sempena nama legenda bola sepak negara ini memang benar-benar hebat bagi saya memandangkan saya juga seorang pemain yang beraksi di posisi penyerang,” kata pemain yang berasal dari Besut, Terengganu itu.

Turut hadir pada majlis tersebut ialah Timbalan Presiden Persatuan Bola Sepak Malaysia (FAM), Tan Sri Annuar Musa dan Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif F&N Holding Berhad, Datuk Ng Jui Sia.

Sementara itu, ketua jurulatih baru Selangor, Irfan Bakti Abu Salim dipilih memenangi anugerah Jurulatih Terbaik.

Kemenangan tersebut adalah hasil kejayaannya membawa Terengganu muncul juara Piala FA musim ini selain kemaraan pasukan itu ke final Piala Malaysia sebelum tewas kepada Negeri Sembilan.

Khairul Fahmi pula dipilih sebagai pemenang anugerah Penjaga Gol Terbaik sementara Safiq Rahim (Selangor) dinobatkan sebagai Pemain Tengah Terbaik.

Bukti Kebangkitan Bola Sepak Malaysia

SERAMAI 2.8 juta penonton di Malaysia terpaku di depan kaca televisyen menyaksikan perlawanan akhir bola sepak Sukan Sea yang menemukan Malaysia dan Indonesia.

Timbalan Presiden Persatuan Bola Sepak Malaysia (FAM), Tan Sri Annuar Musa berkata, daripada jumlah itu, 1.4 juta menonton menerusi saluran televisyen berbayar Astro Arena, 1.1 juta menerusi stesen swasta TV3 dan 300,000 melalui TV1 Radio dan Televisyen Malaysia (RTM).


“Jumlah ini menunjukkan bola sepak kembali menarik minat penonton di Malaysia,” katanya ketika berucap pada Majlis Anugerah Bola Sepak Kebangsaan 2011, semalam.

Annuar berkata, kejayaan skuad kebangsaan dan Harimau Muda bermula 2009, jumlah kehadiran penonton di stadium turut meningkat.


Beliau berkata, bagi musim 2011, jualan tiket bagi perlawanan Liga Malaysia naik 14.8 peratus berbanding 1.3 juta keping tiket yang dijual pada musim 2010.


“Berbanding 1.3 juta pada 2010, sebanyak 1.5 juta tiket dijual pada musim 2011,” katanya.

Beliau berkata, perlawanan akhir Piala FA antara Terengganu dan Kelantan disaksikan sejuta penonton manakala final Piala Malaysia antara Negeri Sembilan dan Terengganu disaksikan 1.7 juta penonton.


Annuar berkata, minat penonton kembali ke stadium dan menonton televisyen adalah berdasarkan rentetan kejayaan skuad kebangsaan dan Harimau Muda bermula dengan meraih emas Sukan Sea di Vientiane, Laos pada 2009, menjuarai kejohanan Piala Persekutuan Bola Sepak Asean (AFF) pada 2010 dan mempertahankan pingat emas Sukan Sea di Indonesia, baru-baru ini.


The players who need to move clubs in January to save their Euro 2012 dream

National team hopefuls will be looking for transfers in the New Year in order to secure first-team football or a place in a higher profile side ahead of Poland and Ukraine

Raul Albiol, Spain
Getty Images
ANALYSIS

With the draw for the Euro 2012 group stage only days away and the tournament set to kick off in Warsaw in just over seven months, national team coaches from across the continent will already be planning their 23-man squads.

Few international breaks remain between now and June so it is domestic form that may prove decisive for those on the periphery of their respective national sides. A sparkling run for club may see rich rewards from country come the summer.

Getting first-team opportunities week in, week out or the chance to play at the very highest level is therefore going to be absolutely vital for those hoping to find a plane seat with their name on it.


RAUL ALBIOL, 26, REAL MADRID & SPAIN

Read more on Albiol
SEASON STATS
Appearances
5
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
31
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesValencia, Malaga, Villarreal
Per cent chance of leaving20%
Raul Albiol signed for Real Madrid in the summer of 2009, along with Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka and Karim Benzema. But the former Valencia centre-back never completely convinced in his first season at the Santiago Bernabeu under Manuel Pellegrini and the Chilean's replacement, Jose Mourinho, wasted no time in bringing in Ricardo Carvalho to partner Pepe.

Those two played the bulk of the games last term, with Albiol filling in at times when Pepe was utilised as a midfield enforcer. But in the final of the Copa del Rey, Sergio Ramos moved inside to play as centre-back, with Alvaro Arbeloa coming in at right-back and with Carvalho out this season, Mourinho has continued to use Ramos in the middle, restricting Albiol to just five appearances so far.

The Valencia-born defender doesn't appear to be in the Portuguese' plans in the long term, but with Carvalho still out and Madrid launching an assault on both the Primera Division and the Champions League this season, Albiol is un unlikely to be allowed to depart in January.

At international level, the 26-year-old - a World Cup winner despite failing to feature in South Africa - looks safe at the moment, despite an error-strewn display in Spain's 3-2 win over Chile in early September.

Question marks over Carles Puyol's fitness and the lack of top-class competition at the back means he is likely to travel to Poland and Ukraine whatever happens this term, but he will hope to feature more in the second part of the season to safeguard a place in Vicente del Bosque's squad.

GARY CAHILL, 25, BOLTON & ENGLAND

Read more on Cahill
SEASON STATS
Appearances
14
Goals
1
Goal average
7%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
7
Goals
1
Goal average
14%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesChelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool, Tottenham
Chance of leaving90%
Cahill would be entitled to believe he is currently one of England's first-choice central defenders after starting the final three Euro 2012 qualifying matches. But the Bolton star will know that is faces pressure for his place from all angles, with the likes of Rio Ferdinand, Phil Jagielka, Joleon Lescott and Phil Jones fighting to partner captain John Terry at the heart of the Three Lions' defence.

While Cahill has performed impressively for England, his club form has been well below the standard he set last term. Some poor individual errors, especially positional mistakes, have contributed to Bolton sitting 18th in the Premier League with 31 goals conceded from 13 games.

Cahill has expressed his desire to play in the Champions League and Fabio Capello has spoken of his preference for his England players to feature in Europe's elite competition.

The 25-year-old is out of contract at the end of the season and Bolton are almost certain to sell in January for between £6-8 million rather than let a valuable asset leave for nothing in the summer. Cahill was the subject of summer bids from Arsenal and Tottenham but Bolton would not lower their £15m valuation despite the club's £93m debts.

The word within the game is that Chelsea are desperate to sign a centre-back in the New Year and have emerged as favourites to sign Cahill as they look to plug a leaky defence. Arsenal are believed to have ended their interest in the former Aston Villa man while Tottenham will only make a move if they suffer an injury crisis.

The only obstacle to Cahill's departure could be Bolton's league position. If Owen Coyle's side find themselves in a potential relegation battle, the club could decide to let Cahill run down his contract, with survival itself estimated to be worth £35m.

JERMAIN DEFOE, 29, TOTTENHAM & ENGLAND

Read more on Defoe
SEASON STATS
Appearances
15
Goals
7
Goal average
46%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
46
Goals
15
Goal average
32%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesNewcastle, Sunderland, QPR, Everton
Chance of leaving20%
The Tottenham striker has not started for England since September 2010 when he suffered an ankle injury days after scoring a hat-trick for the Three Lions against Bulgaria.

Ever since, Fabio Capello has continually overlooked Defoe in favour of strikers with far less talent and even Spurs manager Harry Redknapp has admitted the 29-year-old will find it “difficult” to make the Euro 2012 squad.

That is because Defoe has had for a role mainly as a substitute role at White Hart Lane, where he is regarded as the club's third striker behind Emmanuel Adebayor and Rafael Van der Vaart.

Defoe has started just one of Tottenham's last six league matches and has spoken of his desire for regular first-team opportunities. Redknapp has insisted the diminutive frontman has been "unlucky" and insists he will not be sold.

The former West Ham man has looked sharp this season when he has featured, scoring seven goals in all competitions, and Spurs fans will remember well that he left the club for Portsmouth in January 2008 in search of first-team football. Defoe will not be short of offers but he is unlikely to want to leave London, where is in in the process of having a new house built, having point-blank rejected the prospect of a move to Newcastle over the summer.

While Defoe may be frustrated and worried about his Euro 2012 prospects, it will take a substantial offer for Spurs to consider selling the player. Emmanuel Adebayor is only on loan, Rafael Van der Vaart has an inconsistent injury history while the club plan to offload Roman Pavlyuchenko in January.

EDUARDO, 29, BENFICA (ON LOAN FROM GENOA) & PORTUGAL

Read more on Eduardo
SEASON STATS
Appearances
2
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
27
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesNo interested clubs thus far
Chance of leaving30%
Eduardo joined Benfica on loan in the summer after a just one season at Genoa. Despite being a regular choice at the Serie A side, his frequent mistakes led to the club signing Sebastian Frey in the summer because, as president Enrico Preziosi described, about “four to five bloopers” could be expected from the Portuguese per season.

The 29-year-old then opted for a move to the Estadio da Luz outfit, who were already interested in him prior to the move to Genoa, hoping to fill the shoes of outbound Roberto. However, around the same the time as Eduardo joined the club, Benfica signed Artur Moraes from Sporting Braga. Reports quickly emerged that the two had developed a fractious relationship as they both targeted the No.1 position.

The truth is that Eduardo has found himself coach Jorge Jesus’ second choice, as Artur has earned rave reviews for his performances between the sticks. As a result, he has only made two official appearances to date, both in the Portuguese Cup, and has lost his place in the Portugal national team to Sporting CP’s Rui Patricio.

Eduardo’s playing opportunities at Benfica will remain limited, and he will have to consider a January move to find regular action if he wants to have a chance of earning a starting place in Paulo Bento’s Seleccao at the Euro 2012 finals.

ANDRE-PIERRE GIGNAC, 25, MARSEILLE & FRANCE

Read more on Gignac
SEASON STATS
Appearances
11
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
16
Goals
4
Goal average
25%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesMontpellier, Fulham, Fenerbahce, Koln, Wolfsburg
Chance of leaving95%
Andre-Pierre Gignac's dream move to Marseille, the side he supported as a boy, has been almost wholly a nightmare for the Martigues-born striker.

After a barren first campaign hindered by injury problems and a loss of form, his second season at Stade Velodrome following a big-money move from Toulouse has turned even more sour. Unable to break into the starting XI past youngster Jordan Ayew and top scorer Loic Remy, his patience was finally broken before last week's Champions League meeting with Olympiakos.

On discovering he was not to be involved in the side, he reacted angrily towards head coach Didier Deschamps, with reports stating that he kicked a water bottle against the dressing room wall before insulting the World Cup winner.

A move in the winter is now inevitable, though because of the huge fee that OM paid le Tefece for his services - €18m (£15.5m) according to reports - a permanent transfer at this time of year seems unlikely, with a six-month loan probable.

There was much interest from the Premier League in the summer, with Fulham and Newcastle amongst those interested, and if he is to break into the France squad for Euro 2012 a move to a team where he is likely to play a key role is vital.

When Raymond Domenech was in charge of les Bleus, Gignac was a favourite, but Laurent Blanc has yet to select him for France, and the burly front player has much to do to prove himself to the former Bordeaux boss.

FLORENT MALOUDA, 31, CHELSEA & FRANCE

Read more on Malouda
SEASON STATS
Appearances
7
Goals
1
Goal average
14%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
73
Goals
7
Goal average
9%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesAnzhi Makhachkala
Chance of leaving10%
France's attack is laced with quality on paper, but all too often in recent years the sum of its parts has fallen short of what it should have been. Though Florent Malouda has enjoyed his moments in the national team's jersey, he has been an under-performing player in recent internationals.

Such has been his fall from grace, the former Lyon player is not guaranteed a place in Blanc's 23-man squad to travel to Ukraine and Poland, particularly as his place in Chelsea's starting XI is no longer assured.

The arrival of Juan Mata combined with the ascendancy of Daniel Sturridge at Stamford Bridge means that he is no longer an automatic selection in Andre Villas-Boas' mind, and if he is to play a peripheral role in the remainder of the Blues' campaign he may also fall out of Blanc's thinking too.

France have other options in a left wing berth. Franck Ribery is liable to take the role on the left should Jeremy Menez remain in form until the summer, and behind him there's a host of players able to operate in this role, such as Dimitri Payet, Mathieu Valbuena or perhaps even Paris Saint-Germain's Nene, who has hinted that he could trade national allegiance to France having been overlooked by Brazil and Spain.

Malouda featured only briefly in the November internationals, and though France did not perform especially well, the 73-time capped player was not a noticeable absentee.

There has been little concrete interest in Malouda in recent weeks, though he did reject Juventus in the summer because of wage reasons. However, Anzhi Makhachkala are rumoured to be interested in the Frenchman, and finances are unlikely to be a problem for the Russians. Not playing at a high-profile side may just equally hurt Malouda's chances of playing in the summer, though.

MARKO MARIN, 22, WERDER BREMEN & GERMANY

Read more on Marin
SEASON STATS
Appearances
11
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
16
Goals
1
Goal average
6%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesNo interested clubs thus far
Chance of leaving30%
Once considered the crown jewel of German youth football, Marko Marin has stagnated over the last 12 months, stepping out of the limelight along with his oft-struggling club, Werder Bremen.

He made the DFB's 23-man squad for the 2010 World Cup and was considered something of a 'secret weapon' by coach Joachim Low, who valued his dribbling ability as unique amid a talent pool that emphasises quick passing rather than one-on-one offence.

Since then, however, the 22-year-old has been dropped from the Germany squad, and now is not even assured a starting role at Bremen. He has yet to score this season had been benched for three consecutive matches before returning to action in his club's win over Stuttgart on Sunday.

A natural winger with superb balance and skill in beating defenders individually, Marin is quite clearly struggling to adapt to a central playmaking role in Thomas Schaaf's squad, the same task that had been entrusted to his club predecessors, Diego and Mesut Ozil.

Although he has not yet voiced discontent with his situation, a move may be required for Marin to achieve his best form once more, and make a bid to find his way back into Low's favour. All that is now missing is an interested club, which could be difficult to find given his dearth of form.

FABIO QUAGLIARELLA, 28, JUVENTUS & ITALY

Read more on Quagliarella
SEASON STATS
Appearances
3
Goals
0
Goal average
0%
INTERNATIONAL STATS
Appearances
25
Goals
6
Goal average
24%
TRANSFER STATS
Potential movesAC Milan
Chance of leaving60%
Quagliarella and Milos Krasic have been the main losers in Antonio Conte's revolution at Juventus Stadium, with the two given very little playing time under the former club captain. The striker has been told by his coach that he needs to show in training that he has the appetite to improve as a player in order to win more playing time, but he has be given little more than the occasional substitute's appearance so far this season.

There was talk over the summer that Quagliarella and Conte had had a falling out, and while that remains unproven, what is certain is that the lack of minutes on the pitch for the ex-Napoli man is causing serious harm to his hopes of being included in Cesare Prandelli's squad next summer, with Mario Balotelli, Sebastian Giovinco, Alessandro Matri and Pablo Daniel Osvaldo all preferred by the Azzurri coach.

Giuseppe Rossi and Antonio Cassano would likely travel if proven fit in time, while Antonio Di Natale has been told he will be selected if he's still scoring goals in March.

There have been rumours of interest in a loan move for Quagliarella from Milan, but Juve could veto such a deal in order not to strengthen a title rival, meaning a January move - should one come about at all - will likely not be to a high-profile club, perhaps reducing his hopes of making a big impact in the second half of the campaign.

Monday, 28 November 2011

Ex Roma, Inter and AC Milan Mancini Imprisoned For Rape

Former Brazil international Mancini has been sentenced to two years and eight months in prison after he was found guilty of rape.

Mancini was with Inter Milan at the time of the attack
GettyImagesMancini was with Inter Milan at the time of the attack

Former Inter Milan and AC Milan winger Mancini, who is currently under contract with boyhood club Atletico Mineiro in Brazil, was accused on a sexual attack on a woman in December 2010.

The 31-year-old made six appearances for Brazil during his five-year spell with Roma. He signed for Inter Milan in 2008, but joined AC Milan on loan in the 2009-2010 season and then returned to his homeland in January this year.

Mancini had made 25 appearances for Atletico Mineiro in the current Brasileiro campaign.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

A Clasico six-pointer - Barcelona's defeat at Getafe on Saturday makes the showdown against Real Madrid on December 10 a must-win affair

Pep Guardiola's side suffered a shock loss in the capital and are now six adrift of Jose Mourinho's men at the top of the table - and just ahead of Valencia - after 13 games

Liga BBVA: Getafe-Barcelona: Lionel Messi

It proved to be an unlucky 13 for Barcelona. Pep Guardiola's side came into their 13th league fixture of the campaign unbeaten - and buoyed by the brilliance of their 3-2 win at AC Milan in midweek. But playing once again in their mint-green third strip, they lost their freshness and their flavour on Saturday - and they relinquished their unbeaten record too.

Barca had scored on the road in their last 26 games and had failed to net on only one previous occasion this season - the goalless draw at home to Sevilla when Lionel Messi missed a last-minute penalty. This time, the brilliant Argentine was denied by Getafe goalkeeper Miguel Angel Moya, the post and a marginal offside decision in the closing stages as Barca sought a response to Juan Valera's headed opener midway through the second half.

But it never arrived.

All of the action had taken place in the Spanish capital, with Jose Mourinho's men in action earlier on at the Santiago Bernabeu against city rivals Atletico Madrid. Real hadn't lost a derby against Atletico since 1999 when, as Marca reminded the Rojiblancos, Spain's currency was still pesetas.


Lucky number | Madrid have won their last 13 games

So few expected a shock in either match. And Atletico's bright start and fine opening goal - scored by Adrian - only unsettled the home side for seven minutes. Visiting keeper Thibaut Courtois was then sent off for a foul on Karim Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo converted from the spot to net his first-ever goal against Atletico and it was a stroll after that against 10 men - and later nine, as Diego Godin also saw red.

Ronaldo's sixth assist of the season set up the returning Angel Di Maria for the second, while substitute Gonzalo Higuain made it 3-1 and also won the penalty from which the Portuguese added another to rack up 20 goals this season and make it 18 spot-kick successes out of 19 at Madrid for the former Manchester United man.

But the most important statistic of all sees Madrid move six points clear of Barca for the first time since the final weekend of the 2007-08 season, which also happens to be the last time they claimed the Primera Division title.

With the Clasico looming on December 10, Madrid travel to Sporting Gijon next weekend - without Xabi Alonso, who was booked and will be suspended - in a league fixture in which Ronaldo is yet to score and one which caused Real problems last season as they claimed a hard-fought 1-0 win in the away game and suprisingly lost at home to the Asturians by the same scoreline.

THE USUAL SUSPECTS | La Liga Top Three After 13 Games


P
WDLFAGDPts

Real Madrid1311114610+3634

Barcelona
13841387+3128

Valencia138322113+827

But nothing but a win will do this time as Mourinho's men look to make their advantage count ahead of a Clasico clash in which, providing they win next weekend, even a draw would be a decent result.

Due to their Club World Cup commitments, Barca play twice before returning to Madrid for the huge clash at the Bernabeu. The Catalans are in action on Tuesday at home to Rayo Vallecano, 2-1 losers at home to third-placed Valencia on Saturday, and then feature again at Camp Nou at the weekend - against Levante. Win both games, as they will be expected to do, and they will travel to the capital just three points behind Madrid - albeit having played a game more.

Providing that is achieved, Barca will either be able to draw level at the top or will find themselves well off the pace if Mourinho can mastermind a first Madrid win over Guardiola in La Liga. So if it wasn't exciting enough already, the Clasico is shaping up to be a real six-pointer.