Malays in football | Criticize if you like, but they’re still ‘MyTeam’

“Shebby” Singh comments on English Premier League matches for ESPN-Star Sports, but has never coached. He is pleased, though, that he gets “to call Bryan Robson ‘Robbo’ and Ian Rush ‘Rushie.’ ”

Former Malaysian international and TV commentator Serbegeth “Shebby” Singh has been appointed coach of the amateur team. The confident, fit and studious-looking Singh, who tells the New Straits Times that his childhood involved “taking care of the herd of cattle the family owned and finding time to kick a football,” has directly challenged the local football establishment with his comments. He looks at the field of 32 World Cup finalists, for example, and does not like what he sees.

Togo, Ghana … they have got spirit, they’ve got the fighting spirit, they’ve got the desire and the hunger to want to succeed. So what is it we are lacking?

The show’s originators appear to have succeeded in reigniting an interest in the game among locals. “Whether good or bad, people are talking about local soccer,” says Jason Lo, CEO of the production company.

Gradually, the team is being built. On Tuesday, a postman, student, factory worker and unemployed man from Perak state joined the training-camp roster, as well as Mohd Azmi, a cargo attendant with Nippon Express. Azmi quit his job in order to compete in the trials.

My only dream in life was to be a footballer and when the opportunity came I had no choice but to grab it. I had to decide between my job and my passion and I decided to follow my heart.

Acknowledgment: We thank Asian Football Business Review for bringing this item to our attention.

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1 comment on this post.
  1. Runner-Up » Nerds FC:

    [...] UPDATE: The Global Game reports on a similar project happening in Malaysia, with a show called MyTeam. And I guess we could also mention Football Icon, which aired in Britain a while back. How do we feel about all these “regular guy” football shows? soccer [...]

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