9 August 2020, Sunday | 10:16am

'Footballer Wan Kuzain's poor BM a non-issue'



Language should not be an issue for American-born Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal in his time with the national youth team training for the Philippines Sea Games.

National Under-22 coach Ong Kim Swee believes that the universal language of football is understood by all and is also confident that Wan Kuzain will be able to blend into his playing system.

Wan Kuzain went through his second training session with the Sea Games squad in Subang yesterday.

“He does understand Bahasa Melayu (BM) and can speak BM a little but, of course, English is still his main language,” said Kim Swee.

“In football, language is not a huge problem. On the pitch, anyone can play the system we want.”

Kim Swee added that it was still too early to give an in-depth evaluation of Wan Kuzain but stressed that the 21-year-old has been very professional in training.

“It has only been two days, so it is still early for me to say but so far he has shown good teamwork and understanding with the other players.

“He has also fit in with them both on and off the pitch. I do not foresee any problems as he is a very professional player who knows what he has to do.

“He has just arrived from the United States and needs more time to adapt to the different time zone we are in as well as our weather.

“Hopefully, in the next few days, he will be back to his best.”

Kim Swee, who guided Malaysia to the Sea Games title in 2011 (Indonesia), however, stressed that Wan Kuzain must earn his place in the squad just like any other player.

The competition for the final-20 will be stiff with players from the senior squad set to join Kim Swee’s training squad today.

“There is no easy way in (making the final squad). Wan Kuzain and the other players will have to work hard to be selected,” Kim Swee added.

“We only have a few days left before we leave for Manila and tomorrow (today) players from the national (senior) team will join us.

“We will have a friendly match on Thursday (tomorrow) and from there I will assess him (Wan Kuzain) before announcing the final list of 20 players for Manila.”

Wan Kuzain currently plays for Sporting Kansas City in Major League Soccer (MLS).


Source: News Straits Times

Photo: stadiumastro.com


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