BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN (2 April 2016) – BRUNEI football is heading in the right direction. That was the assessment made by Lim Kim Chon, the FIFA Technical Development Officer for Southeast Asia and East Asia.
Kim Chon made his second technical evaluation visit to the Sultanate at the end of March 21-25 and felt that the National FA of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) are doing well.
He made his first visit in 2013 not long after Mike Wong came in as the NFABD Technical Director in October and has been impressed with the sport’s progress since then.
“There are a lot of football activities now compared to when it first started,” said Kim Chon. “I can say that the development in grassroots football and youth courses has gone a long way but they must be vastly expanded into the schools and districts.
“Mike just started then, and I can see that he has done a lot. If it was a 100m race, NFABD is around the 70m mark. During my first visit in 2013, I could only see the forest (around the NFABD House) and now the turf/pitch is up. I can see that there is more (development) coming up including the Futsal building as well as other grass pitches.
“I’m impressed and it is a good sign. The Prince (NFABD President HRH Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah) and the people in the FA are taking things very seriously. They are proactive and the right people are in place.”
NFABD were recognised for their efforts to develop grassroots football in the country with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Grassroots Award for Aspiring Member Association during the AFC Grassroots Conference in Kuala Lumpur on 1 March.
However, Kim Chon pointed out that there is still plenty of room for improvement – especially when it comes to officiating.
A case in point is Sunday’s DST Super League match between two-time champions Indera SC and newly promoted side Kasuka FC, which had to be abandoned after a heated argument between both teams.
Lim highlighted the need for match commissioners to help ensure things run smoothly.
“There needs to be match commissioners in the league matches for football to go up another level,” said the Malaysian. “Retired referees can be invited and trained as local match commissioners so that the DST Super and DST Premier Leagues obtain quality control in terms of match organisation.”
“Coaches, players and match officials need to understand that there needs to be respect for one another. Referees need to know their roles and there needs to be further education on that, which is important.
“Young referees from schools must be recruited and trained so that they can be given the opportunity and experience to officiate in the domestic youth league. Coach development and education is on course, which is a good sign. However, coaches must always be willing to share with others.”
NFABD is currently conducting the sixth AFC (Asian Football Confederation) ‘C’ Certificate Coaching Course from March 26 – April 8 while the first of its kind AFC ‘A’ Certificate is also ongoing.