Kelantan face expulsion from Super League

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Football League's (MFL) Club Licensing First Instance Body (FIB) revealed the cast for the 2024/25 Super League season, and things don't look good.

Only 10 clubs — Johor Darul Ta'zim, Perak, Sri Pahang, Selangor, Terengganu, Penang, Kuching City, Kedah, Negri Sembilan and Police — received their National Licence on merit.

Though KL City, Kelantan United and Sabah were also granted a licence each, it came with sanctions. And Kelantan's fate is uncertain.

Seven clubs from the MBSB Championship (M3 Amateur Football League) failed to get their licences. They are KL Rovers, Harini Selangor, Armed Forces, Imigresen, Perlis United, Melaka and Sarawak United.

FIB chairman Sheikh Mohd Nasir Sheikh Mohd Sharif said KL City, Kelantan United and Sabah were fined RM20,000 each for submitting incorrect overdue declarations, while Kelantan were penalised RM20,000 for not complying with FIB's timeline.

"We had clubs submitting incorrect overdue declarations. We always checked their submissions and we found out that these clubs made mistakes.

"We take their submissions seriously and we fined them RM20,000 each as a reminder to not repeat it," said Sheikh yesterday.

"I congratulate the clubs that have been granted the National Licence and recognise their outstanding efforts to ensure a successful application."

Kelantan are now in a race against time to submit proof of overdue salary settlement or a mutual agreement with their players and officials. Failure to comply will see their application rejected.

If the Red Warriors manage to meet these conditions, they still need to submit a declaration letter to prove that they have cleared all overdue payments as of Nov 30 along with the settlement of their cases with Fifa and FAM before Dec 31.

Clubs, who want to obtain an M-League licence, will be evaluated on six main criteria: Infrastructure, Personnel and Administration, Legal, Finance, and Business.

MFL also requires every club to submit a statutory declaration letter that shows they are free from any forms of debts, salaries owing to employees, and payments to Inland Revenue Board, Employees Provident Fund, Social Security Organisation and Employment Insurance System as of Nov 30.

MFL chief executive officer Datuk Stuart Ramalingam said Kelantan's Super League fate is in their own hands, and he hopes they can fulfil FIB's conditions in order to get their licence.

"We hope the Super League will have 14 teams. Only after the due date on Dec 31, I will be able to answer how many teams will be in the Super League," said Stuart.

"We hope the 14th slot will be filled up by Kelantan but they need to fulfil FIB's criteria.

"If they fail, they will be automatically expelled from the Super League."

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