Alberts chosen "because others were not available"

Fourteen years after guiding Kedah to the Malaysia Cup title, Football Association of Malaysia's Dutch Technical Director Robert Alberts is the surprise coach of Malaysia's national U-20 team for the Champions Youth Cup. "Why Alberts ... Why not place our trust on our fellow Malaysians – Reduan Ab-dullah, Bakri Ibni, Mat Zan Mat Aris, Kelly Tham, Moey Yoke Ham, G. Torairaju, K. Devan or Jalil Ramli – to name a few?" asked Rizal Hashim of the Malay Mail. "Alberts, to his supporters, had a highly successful five seasons with Kedah from 1990," he answered himself. "He crossed the Causeway for a new chapter in his life at Tiong Baru before moving to Home United. Before joining the FAM, he was the coaching director of the South Korean FA from 2002 to 2004.

"FAM had little option but to appoint Alberts, actually. Although people still doubt his credentials and keep on questioning his interests with the Arsenal Soccer School, Alberts is the only one on FAM’s payroll who is avail able at that particular time. During that period, K. Rajagopal will handle the U-20 team for the ASEAN Football Federation U-20 Championship in Vietnam. Despite the dismal performance in the pre-Olympic campaign, B. Sathianathan will be preoccupied with his U-23 squad bound for the SEA Games later this year. National team boss Norizan Bakar will be shaping his side for the Merdeka Tournament, while U-17 tactician Aminuddin Hussein is expected to be in London for a training stint at Brickendonbury, leaving Alberts as the only choice for the CYC."

FAM General Secretary Seri Dr Ibrahim Saad bluntly gave his assurance it was a one-off appointment. “We opted for Alberts because others were not available, it’s as simple as that,” said Ibrahim.

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