Malaysia Cup 2013
Published: August 21, 2013
Malaysia Cup 2013, Former Perak FA Head Coach Steve Darby believes that the Malaysia Cup is one of the most unique competitions in this region, claiming that it’s the one that players and fans look forward to the most.
The 2013 edition of the tournament is set to kick off on Tuesday, and Darby suggested that the unpredictability of the competition is what makes it so exciting.
“I think the Malaysia Cup is a fantastic competition,” he told Goal exclusively.
“It’s the one that fans look forward to the most and I’ve always enjoyed coaching in the Malaysia Cup because it’s so unique.”
The Englishman never won the competition during his time in Malaysia. However, he did guide Perak to the final in 2006, an experience that Steve still holds in high regard until today.
“The occassion in 2006 was magnificent, a full Bukit Jalil Stadium as well. Sadly though, it was ruined by very dubious refereeing decisions, such as Ahmad Shahrul Azhar being sent off with his first tackle! Kedah deserved to win, but later there were many suspicious raised about the refeereing.
“Nonetheless, the Perak fans were great on that day, and in that particular season, we lost the title on goal difference and also made it to the Malaysia Cup final. And it was not bad at all, considering the budget that we were working with,” he added.
It has been five years since Steve Darby left the Seladangs, and quite a number of things have changed since then. Azraai Khor is currently in charge of them, and Darby believes that they are in a very healthy position when compared with the situation towards the end of his tenure.
“I think Perak have a top class coach in Azraai Khor, who should be involved in the national set-up. His record is excellent. Also, do not underestimate the value of stable administration supplied by ‘Bobby’ in the office. He does a great deal of unheralded work which keeps things running smoothly behind the scenes.
“I had three great Presidents during my time, and it was only ruined by government inteference when PAS took over from UMNO. I couldn’t believe it when they stopped paying young players’ wages who had families. They destroyed a team that was not only developing, but also doing well, making a profit and paying off debts.