S’wak to compete in national U-19 football league
by Matthew T. Umpang. Posted on August 19, 2012, Sunday
KUCHING: Sarawak is set to compete in the inaugural National Under-19 League next year with the Sarawak State Sports Council (MSNS) sending players under its successful Sarawak Football Development Programme (SFDP).
In preparation for the league, SFDP project manager Lucas Kallang Laeng announced yesterday that MSNS will organise the third edition of the Inter-centre SFDP Football Tournament next month. He described the annual Inter-centre tournament as the best platform to scout young football talents in Sarawak. After the scouting process, the players will then be absorbed into the SFDP.
“MSNS is constantly looking for uncut gems and to scout young footballing talents around the state. We did unearth new players in the past years and they are now in the Sukma squad,” he added.
Lucas pointed out that the SFDP are already in operations in the south, central and north regions with each centres having its own coaching staff.
“In total, we have 45-centres statewide training Under-18 footballers. Each centre will then host its own tournament which starts simultaneously. The tournament starts Sept 18-23. We intend to create a pool of elite players through these centres. The elite players will then be graded accordingly,” he revealed.
In another development, MSNS has confirmed that under the SFDP, selected players will be sent for exposure and training sessions outside Sarawak.
They will be attached to clubs in Peninsular Malaysia and overseas such as places like the United States and Europe.
“The players will certainly gain useful experience abroad and away from Sarawak. We want Sarawak to be one of the top suppliers for football players in the country,” commented Lucas.
Lucas pointed out that only identified elite players will be sent. SFDP is now in the process of identifying them.