The Back-Blocks of Asia

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Re: The Back-Blocks of Asia

Postby blahblah Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:44 am

Vietnamese football is flavour of the month following the Golden Dragon’s good run in the AFC Cup and win in the AFF Suzuki Cup. Incheon have snaffled young striker Nguyễn Công Phượng who was reportedly being courted by a French Ligue 2 club. Goalkeeper Đặng Văn Lâm was picked up by Muangthong whilst Buriram grabbed midfield anchor Lương Xuân Trường. 19 y.o. left back sensation Đoàn Văn Hậu is surely being courted by some serious clubs and I’d expect him to be gracing the fields of Europe before long. There are a couple of players in the squad that a certain expansion club in Western Melbourne may do well to run an eye over.

In India, Chennai City FC has reportedly received a 20-25 million Euro investment from Basel FC. It seems the Swiss are keen on India’s football potential and will be looking to change the way the club is managed. Certainly any help in improving administration in Indian football is welcome and that, much more than the money, may be the biggest boon for Chennai City.

And there is much rejoicing in Nepal as their women’s team defeated India in the Hero Gold Cup, a 4 team tournament between Nepal, India, Iran & Myanmar. It is Nepal’s first ever win over India in women’s football and they are rather chuffed. If they can beat bottom placed Iran tomorrow and India fail to win over table toppers Myanmar, then they are into the final. Good luck to the Nepali Chelis who have really found some form in this tournament.
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Re: The Back-Blocks of Asia

Postby blahblah Wed Feb 27, 2019 8:00 am

In Indonesia, the PSSI governance grief rolls on ad nauseum. PSSI President Edy Rahmayadni stood down in late January in the wake of a corruption investigation. He was replaced bu Joko Driyono who was only in the job for a couple of weeks before he found himself facing police questions regarding match fixing. The Indonesian fans deserve better however it looks like they are continuing to get more of the same.

After the initial discovering of some ineligable players by the AFC, Timor Leste was booted out of qualification for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup after it was discovered a total of twelve Brazilians had played for the country under falsified birth and baptismal certificates. Charming. Oddly this has yet to translate into a FIFA ban, so the Timorese can still join the 2022 World Cup Qualifiers.

There was some confusion in Uzbekistan as the number of teams for the 2019 Super League was moved from ten back to twelve (same as in 2018) only hours before the 2019 draw. The draw itself was only ten days before kick-off, so not much time for planning!

Also in Uzbekistan it seems one of Australia's most succesful overseas coaches, Mirko Jelicic, has been moved from Head Coach of Lokomotiv Tashkent to Assitant Coach, a role he last held in 2015. Given he led the club to the AFC Quarter finals and took the domestic double in 2016 you can be forgiven if he feels a little hard done by; either that or he has something serious lined up for the 2019/20 season in another league.
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Re: The Back-Blocks of Asia

Postby blahblah Tue Mar 26, 2019 10:26 am

It seems Pakistan are not keen to split sport and geopolitics and pulled out of the AFC u23 Qualifiers at the 11th hour as their group included India. It left the tournament in bit of a flux as the qualification computations had to be changed to allow for one group with only three sides. It is sad for the players involved as their hopes of making it to the Olympics evaporated with the withdrawal.

Still at the AFC u23 qualifiers, Indonesia showed its attacking intent by submitting a team sheet where every single player, including the goal keeper, was labled as a forward. Unfortunately not even having a team full of forwards could help them find the back of the net as they went down 4-0 to Thailand.

In Bangladesh, FIFA Council Member and advocate for Women's football, Mahfuza Akhter Kiron, was arrested for merely commenting that the Prime Minister Sheik Hasina favoured cricket over football. She was promptly charged with defamation and arrested. It makes the complaints about the difficulties of advocating for football here in Australia look rather feeble.
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Re: The Back-Blocks of Asia

Postby blahblah Wed Apr 03, 2019 10:22 am

The Kyrgyztsan FA appears to have taken inspirations from the Jamaican bob-sled team and entered a side in the AFC Beach Football tournament in Thailand. Just as Jamaica has no snow, Kyrgyzstan is landlocked and somewhat devoid of beaches which may explain their -20 goal difference after three games of the group stage.

Lebanon has showed some class with their expatriate community in the UAE turning out in large numbers to welcome their Special Needs footballers for the Special Olympics. They met the team at the Dubai Aiport and handed out roses (a traditional welcome gift) and organised a reception. A tip of the propellor beanie to the Lebanese in Dubai.

China has a new coach in Fabio Cannavaro, though given his first two games were home losses to Thailand and Uzbekistan in the China Cup there is a risk that his stay in the top job will be a short one indeed. There is some cause for optimism though as one player missing from the squad, Wu Lei, became the first Chinese to score in La Liga as he netted for Espanyol against Valladolid.
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Re: The Back-Blocks of Asia

Postby blahblah Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:01 am

The Pakistan Football Federation appears mired in, well itself, which is resulting in inaction from all concerned. The President & General Secretary were removed in December after an election that was the result of a court ruling. This wasn’t recognized by FIFA and turmoil has resulted as there are two people calling themselves President. A FIFA delegation is heading to Pakistan in May to sort it out but in the meantime Pakistan will continue with their World Cup qualification preparations.

In Indonesia, fans of Persebaya Surabaya threw thousands of dolls onto the pitch at half-time to promote awareness of children’s cancer. The dolls were collected and donated to children in Surabaya and to flood victims in Papua. Persebaya went on to win the match so a lovely day all-round for the Persebaya fans.

In Brunei, the club side that acts as the quasi-national team, Duli Pengiran Muda Mahkota (DPMM) have been shopping themselves around. They were upset that the S-League (where they play) is insisting on treating Brunei players as foreign players and telling the club they have to play Singaporeans. DPMM went off in a huff, declaring they’d play in Malaysia, prompting the MAS to tell DPMM that they’d have to play Malaysians. This sent DPMM into a bigger pout announcing they’d play in Indonesia, prompting the PSSI to say it wasn’t possible a few days later. Not to be dissuaded they reportedly queried the Thais, to no avail. Hence DPMM are back in the S-League for 2019, though apparently have their eye on another crack at Indonesia League 1 for 2020. You have to admire their persistence!
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Re: The Back-Blocks of Asia

Postby blahblah Tue May 14, 2019 9:21 am

The Tajikistan FA has jumped the gun, leaping onto Twitter and announcing their participation (and all the other teams) in India's Hero Intercontinental Cup before the hosts had a chance to do so. With the proverbial cat out of the bag, it became apparent that the name of the tournament may need a rethink given the participants are India (hosts), Syria, North Korea and Tajikistan.

In Macau there is a new non-foreigner rule which applies to the 4th tier of Macau football and the Senior Veterans League. The 1st to 3rd tiers retain their 8 foreigner quota. Clubs have been complaining, threatening to take the MFA to court, as there doesn't appear to be any logic behind the move. Macau 4th tier football is hardly a hot bed of youth development and the Senior Veterans League most certainly not. It will be interesting indeed to see what the rationale is, should they ever reveal it.

Palestine has held its first ever football championship for amputees on the Gaza Strip. 80 players tooks part with the event being played in the Stadium of Palestine, rebuilt since it took a hammering in the 2014 conflict with Israel. The International Committee of the Red Cross oversaw the event which hopefully be a precursor to Palestine competing in regional and international amputee tournaments.

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