FOLLOWING the tragic death of Selangor President's Cup footballer Muhammad Husni Idrus earlier this week, FAM Local Competition Committee chairman Firdaus Mohamed has advised M-League teams to take their players' health seriously.
Husni, 21, was found unconscious at a food court in Petaling Jaya just after turning out for Selangor in a match against JDT III at the PKNS field in Kelana Jaya on Wednesday.
Petaling Jaya district police deputy chief, Supt Ku Mashariman Ku Mahmood said the late Husni had a history of asthma.
While footballers are expected to be in robust health, a Fifa Sudden Death Report (FIFA-SDR), which was published in 2020, revealed that there were 617 cases from 2014-2018, which were attributed to sudden cardiac arrest or unexplained sudden death while playing or shortly after playing.
Coronary heart disease has been revealed as the cause of death in the majority of cases following autopsies.
Firdaus said though footballers undergo medical tests before signing contracts with M-League teams, there are times some illnesses or medical conditions are undetected during screening.
"Generally, footballers go through medical tests every season before signing professional contracts, and it's assumed that they are fit to play,"
"Sometimes an illness or a medical condition develops after the medical tests or screening, so it's hard to pinpoint what went wrong and where.
"It's also not fair to blame anyone for sudden illness.
"I personally believe periodical screening is the right way. Teams need to invest to keep their players healthy.
"Those with bigger budgets can have the latest technology to keep track of their players.
"Those who can't afford can start with periodical health screening to keep track of their athletes."