But, on reflection, it was no surprise, he had said. The Palestinians are known for their determination and commitment in whatever they do, and playing football for their country is no exception.
They will go all out to win and keep their nation’s flag flying high because to them, tomorrow is always uncertain. They may not be there because they may be shot and killed by their enemy when they return home.
In their hearts, whatever they can do for their country, they will do the best, even though deep inside, they are always thinking of life and death. Our players are totally different in mindset.
Uppermost on their mind is what new car they are going to drive and own, especially when they get rewarded each time they win. Our players are very highly paid, each earning between RM20,000 and RM80,000 a month.
They are very comfortable, thanks to the continued generosity of the powers that be. Regardless of their performance, they still get rewarded.
We don’t blame the players for becoming too complacent, comfortable and behaving like fat cats. It is the system that has made them like that.
Many believe the way we scout and develop our talent and skills are not right. We need to find new ways, shift our thinking or think outside the box to bring back the glory days of our football.
Our footballing standard is going south and what is more pathetic is that it is affecting even our Harimau Muda team. The future of football in our country is bleak.
Unless there is a total shake-up and self-reassessment at all levels, we will continue to be caught in the present trap of feathering one’s nest, which will only bring us further and further down in our football ranking.
We don’t have to follow the United Kingdom or Europe when rewarding our players. That is not the way to encourage our young talents.
It is even more important to inculcate a deep sense of commitment and discipline. Not by dangling dollars. Money is not everything.
Based on the standard of football our professional players have today, they should be paid, at most, in the range of RM7,000 to RM25,000 per month.
Even that is considered generous. We do not think Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore reward their players as generously as we do. Yet they get better results all the time. A.B. Sidek, Petaling Jaya, Selangor. The NST Letters to the Editors 20 June 2015