SHAH ALAM, Jan. 5: Selangor Super League football team manager, Irfan Bakti Abu Salim, 62, is aiming to win at least one cup in the upcoming 2013 season.
He said although the Selangor team lost several key players such as Safiq Rahim and several other players who had migrated to other teams, it will not thwart the ambitions of the team to achieve their 33rd Malaysia Cup victory this year.
“The Selangor players are a mix of new and old faces who are spirited in pursuing every championship cup this year despite losing several of our main players who migrated to other teams,” he said during a press conference after the 2013 Selangor football team introduction session at Shah Alam.
Also present at the ceremony were Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, Exco members Dr Xavier Jayakumar, Dr Yunus Hairi, Dr Yaakob Sapari, and members of the Selangor Football Fan Club.
The new faces joining the team lineup this year are S. Kunalan, Sharbinee Alawee Ramli, Mahalli Jasuli, Abdul Shukur Jusoh, Muhammad Ramzul Zahini Adenan, Muhammad Afiq Azmi, Mohd Raini Md Noor, Mohd Fairuz Abdul Aziz, Kavichelvan, and imported players such as Francis Forkey Doe and Michal Kubala.
Abdul Khalid hopes that the Selangor team improves its performance from last year of only third place in the Super League and failure to advance to the finals of the Malaysia Cup upon losing to Kelantan in the semifinals.
“Hopefully, the Selangor team can be an example to other teams, just like the Sime Darby team which advanced to the finals of the FA Cup despite not having star players in its lineup,” he said.
The new captain, Asraruddin Putra Omar, 25, hopes that every player can perform his best to appreciate the contribution and support of football fans in Selangor.
He said the failure to obtain any trophies in the previous year should be used as inspiration to further improve the image of the Selangor football team, also known as the Red Giants.
Selangor senior football player, Amri Yahyah, 32, said he will do his best in the effort to realise the dream of football fans of seeing Selangor win at least one trophy this year.
“Although not appointed captain, it does not affect my effort to help the Selangor team win a trophy in 2013,” he said.
The Selangor team’s lineup which will compete in this year’s AFC Cup is also comprised of old faces such as Mohd Bunyamin Omar, Mohd Nasriq Baharom, Solihin Kanasian, Mohd Fitri Shazwan, Norazlan Razali, and imported defensive player, Ramez Jamal Dayoub.