PETALING JAYA: The FA of Malaysia (FAM) may bring back foreign players into the Malaysian Super League (MSL).
“We will see whether there is a need to bring back the foreign players when the league ends in August,” competitions committee chairman Datuk Che Mat Jusoh told a press conference at Wisma FAM in Kelana Jaya yesterday.
The FAM did away with the services of foreign players last year.
And, since then, the turnout of fans for both the Super League and Premier League has dwindled.
Last year, the Premier League saw a massive 70% drop in fan turnout. Only 63,415 spectators turned up for the 182 second-tier matches of the MSL compared to 233,323 in 2008. That’s an average of 348 fans per match.
The support for Super League wasn’t any better either – with a 20% drop in attendance last season. A total of 614,000 fans watched the 182 matches compared to 750,000 in 2008. That works out to an average of 3,377 fans per game.
Selangor’s early exit in the preliminary rounds of the AFC Cup competition this year has also raised serious doubts about the quality of Malaysian teams, who do not have any foreign players in their line-ups.
In fact, no Malaysian team have gone past the quarter-final stage of the AFC Cup since its inception in 2004.
Even former treble winners Kedah became the laughing stock last season. The Canaries, playing without any imports, were thrashed 2-8 by Vietnamese outfit Binh Duong in a round of 16 match in Ho Chin Minh City.
This year, Selangor crashed out in the group stage.
Meanwhile, the competitions committee have decided to hold this year’s Malaysia Cup final on Oct 30 at the Shah Alam Stadium.
The National Stadium in Bukit Jalil will be unavailable due to renovation works on the tracks.