FAM: Stop the bad behaviour

Malaysian footballers celebrate after their win over Myanmar in the final of The Merdeka Cup tournament in Shah Alam near Kuala Lumpur, 29 August 2007. – AFP pic
Malaysian footballers celebrate after their win over Myanmar in the final of The Merdeka Cup tournament in Shah Alam near Kuala Lumpur, 29 August 2007. – AFP pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 31 — The FA of Malaysia (FAM) wants firebrand fan group Ultras Malaya to stop humiliating Malaysian football with their antics.

FAM deputy president Tengku Abdullah Ahmad Shah is not impressed with the supporters’ group who continue to defy Fifa regulations by lighting and throwing pyrotechnics, including flares, fireworks and smoke bombs.

“Our country’s name and image is at stake,” Tengku Abdullah said.

“Fifa and the Asian Football Confederation take such matters seriously. We want to see quality football and this includes fans behaving properly.”

Tengku Abdullah, however, admitted only a small number of fans contribute to such disruptions during matches. 

“All it takes is one bad apple to spoil the entire basket. I hope there will be no disturbance during the Malaysia Cup final on Sunday,” he said.

He was referring to splinter groups of Ultras Malaya supporting teams in the M-League.

“Let us all enjoy football. Everyone should go to the stadium to enjoy football and soak in the atmosphere instead of causing problems,” he said.

Tengku Abdullah refrained from commenting on the abandoned S-League match between Harimau Muda B and Young Lions at Pasir Gudang Stadium last Sunday.

“Let me see the (match) report first,” he said.

The S-League match was called off after Ultras Malaya fans pelted flares and smoke-bombs onto the pitch to protest against the manner Singaporean Sherif el-Masri celebrated his goal in the 77th minute.

FAM general secretary Datuk Hamidin Amin said the national body had held discussions with the group in the past and would prefer to advise them to stick to the regulations instead of taking drastic measures, including lodging a police report.

“We prefer to talk and hope such incidents would not occur again,” he said.

The Ultras Malaya founder, who identified himself as Freddy, defended the actions of the fans in The Malay Mail yesterday.

Freddy claimed el-Masri had shown his middle finger to the fans and they rightfully retaliated. He warned the Ultras were ready to take drastic action if provoked again.

Ultras Malaya even threatened opposing teams and fans not to mess with them “or face the consequences”.

Meanwhile, FAM and national striker Norshahrul Idlan Talaha have replied to the AFC pertaining to disciplinary breaches during the Asian Cup qualifier between Malaysia and Bahrain on Oct 15.

The national body was hauled up after Ultras Malaya lit smoke bombs immediately after the match. 

Norshahrul was asked to explain his action of revealing a religious message on his undershirt after scoring the equaliser in the match that ended 1-1.

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