Committee settles for Rajagopal

BARRING objections, K. Rajagopal is set to be given the responsibility of guiding the national Under-23 football team for the Laos Sea Games in December. The recommendation for Rajagopal to be given the job will be made by the technical sub-committee the FA of Malaysia formed following the senior team’s failure to make the Asean Championship semi-finals last month.

There were 10 applicants for the post, including former Thailand and Indonesia national Peter Withe and UPB-MyTeam’s Boyan Hodak, but Rajagopal’s familiarity with the the players saw him getting the support of the sub-committee and the national team management committee has to endorse the recommendation. “After looking at the applications, we agreed that the job should be given to a local who knows the players well. Rajagopal is not new to the national football scene and he also knows the players well. He has been managing the Young Tigers for two years and the players have great respect for him,” said a committee member who declined to be identified.

Rajagopal, a former Selangor and Kelantan coach, holds the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Professional licence. If endorsed, Rajagopal will have to give up his position as chief coach of the Under-19 Young Tigers. He will also get a new team of assistant coaches and he will need a good bunch, especially as the squad are expected to win gold in Laos. The last time Malaysia won Sea Games gold was in 1989.

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