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Goal line referees to make debut in M-League

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GOAL LINE referees will be introduced in selected matches in next season's M-League, and if everything goes well, it will go full-scale in 2015.

FA of Malaysia (FAM) referees committee chairman Datuk Astaman Abdul Aziz said goal line referees along with communication sets for match officials will be introduced in stages next season.

"It is our attempt to eradicate the crimes and misdemeanours in the penalty area. It will allow more decisions to be correctly judged," said Astaman at Wisma FAM in Kelana Jaya yesterday.

"We have 130 qualified referees and I believe we have enough manpower.

"They will be briefed next month. We will start by introducing communication sets for match officials before trying our goal line referees.

"If everything goes well, we may introduce it full-scale in next season's Malaysia Cup quarter-finals. However, we have put off an earlier suggestion to have professional referees in the league."

The exco yesterday also endorsed four foreign players per team for next season's league. In April, FAM's executive committee endorsed an increase in the number of foreigners for each team from two to three for the new season but the third player must come from an Asian Football Confederation affiliate.

Local competitions committee chairman Datuk Afandi Hamzah said the increase of foreign players will improve the quality of the league.

"Only three foreigners can start a match while the fourth member must be on the substitute bench. Four is the maximum number as teams can also opt to sign three foreigners.

"I believe our decision will improve the quality of the league."

The registration deadline for local players for the Super League and the Premier League is on Dec 14 while for foreign players, it is Dec 4.

The Charity Shield match between reigning Super League champions LionsXII and Malaysia Cup winners Pahang on Jan 17 has been moved to Darulmakmur Stadium in Kuantan.

It was initially scheduled at Shah Alam Stadium but the venue will be closed for renovation.

On Kelantan's request to register Australian-born midfielder Brendan Gan as a local player next season, Afandi said his committee needs to research the matter before making a decision.

Citing Fifa eligibility regulations on nationality, Kelantan argued that Brendan's ancestral ties to Malaysia through his Malaysian-born father demonstrates that there is a clear link to the country as permitted by the rules, regardless of citizenship.


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