KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is a country which is blessed with many young and talented players, however many local coaches on the other hand seem to be rather weak and left behind when it comes to coaching methods and techniques.
This is the opinion of FA of Malaysia’s (FAM) technical director, Peter Dee Roo regarding the quality of local coaches especially those who are attached with the National Football Development Programme (NFDP) which is still relying on seemingly outdated coaching methods in developing young and upcoming players.
In fact, one of the most glaring weaknesses that has been identified by the former Dutch player is the excitement of certain quarters in wanting to follow the European football DNA, despite the fact that Malaysia has an interesting and attractive approach to playing the game, which can be developed or explored to its full potential.
"The coaching system in place at grassroots level is rather weak because old coaching methods and practices are still being applied despite the fact that world football has changed in becoming more modern.
"And there seems to be this trend of wanting to apply or follow the European style of play, even though in actual fact Malaysian players have their very own specialty and skills set. To be honest, after almost a year and a half of me being here as a technical director, Malaysia is a country that is actually blessed with talented players, but we have failed to realise and fully develop such talents to its full potential.
"Just look at Japan and South Korea, they do not just simply try to follow and copy European footballing culture but instead have their very own identity of being swift and quick when on the attack. Even countries in the gulf have their own identity where they are known to usually play an aggressive game.
"Malaysia too has its own advantages, so why must we follow what others do. This is why at FAM, we are working very hard to ensure that all the coaches, from those in charge and responsible for the national senior squad like Tan Cheng Hoe right down to those at grassroots level use one, same module which can be likened to being Harimau Malaya’s identity,” he said when met after the NFDP technical committee meeting here in Bukit Jalil earlier today (Friday).
Dee Roo, 49, was appointed as technical director in September 2017 to replace Fritz Schmid, has been given a major role and responsibility in restructuring the NFDP system and the programme in entirety which came under heavy criticism following the failures of the national Under-16 squad led by Lim Teong Kim in their quest to qualify for the Under-17 World Youth Cup that will take place in Peru come October.
Dee Roo also said that the target set by the previous management in qualifying for the World Youth Cup was a mistake on their part because psychologically it would add unnecessary pressure on the young players’.
"For grassroots level, by right the players’ should not have been burdened with a specific target to avoid them from being heavily pressured from early on. When at such a young age, actually they should be given encouragement and support to go as far as they possibly can compared to having to meet such a high target of qualifying for the World Youth Cup.
"From now on, we are not going to set any high, specific target because our objective is to produce a group of top quality players and not just focus on one particular team or group,” said Dee Roo, who was instrumental in helping the Australian Under-17 squad qualify for the 2015 World Youth Cup that was held in New Zealand.