National football coach Nelo Vingada has come under intense pressure following the defeat to North Korea. File pic by SYARAFIQ ABD SAMAD

KUALA LUMPUR: "You can bring the best coach in the world to Malaysia but he still won't be able to change our fortunes so soon.”

This is the view of football great Datuk Shukor Salleh who feels it is unfair to blame national coach Nelo Vingada for Malaysia’s failure in the Asia Cup qualifiers.

He said the national team lack international quality and will take time to develop.

The team’s double defeat (both 4-1) to North Korea in the Asia Cup qualifiers has triggered anger among fans who called for Vingada to be sacked.

"For me, firing the coach will not solve the problem. We did not fail because of the coach, but because our players are just not at that (international) standard yet,” said Shukor today.

Former national footballer Datuk Shukor Salleh says firing the coach is not the answer. File pic. AMIR IRSYAD OMAR

"A coach is similar to a chef, he will not be able to prepare a nice dish if the ingredients are incomplete or are of inferior quality."

Shukor stressed the need for patience and believes the national squad need to compete in more Class A international matches if they are to improve.

"In the old days the national team used to play in a lot of international tournaments throughout the year such as Pestabola Merdeka, Presidents Cup (South Korea), Thai King's Cup, Jakartaraya Cup and many others in addition to the Sea Games and various qualifiers.

"Nowadays the team mostly play in qualifiers and the lineup always change because players are not able to maintain their performance.

"Playing a lot of international matches will forge a strong understanding between us and also made us more mature.”

Translated from Berita Harian

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