Saw Qiu Li, one of Balestier Khalsa best player, released by the Toa Poyah club as he could not accept a pay cut.
This looked like a straightforward case of an employer treating his player badly after he had given it all yet I do not see it that way.
Qiu Li is just the unfortunate victim of Balestier vice-chairman S.Thavaneson commitment to Singapore football.
Confused, are you.
If one had followed the news, one could know by now FAS have revamped the Centre of Excellence (COEs) system and Balestier is the only one outside the Uniform teams - Home United and Warriors FC - that have opted to join the scheme.
Considering how much the new system is asking of clubs, it will be no small sum for Balestier to fork out even if their COEs are not as impressive as Home United plans.
Yet the Toa Poyah club still accepted the option to join when better-placed and better-funded Tampines Rovers turned it down.
If that is not commitment, what is.
No doubts the rewards, as the rumors goes, such as better funding and allowing the clubs to keep their developed players sound nice but we do know we are talking about Football Association of Singapore (FAS) and their always-lying President Zainudin Noordin.
I mean Tampines Rovers chairman Teo Hong Seng commitment cannot be questioned but even he must be disheartened by FAS backstabbing over the years.
Just this year, FAS saw it wise to ask Tampines for their youngster Shannon Stephen when they did not really need him.
Afterall, Aide Iskandar, the SEA Games Under-23 coach, was quoted by TODAY telling us, after the 1-2 defeat in a friendly against Laos Under-23, the second-stringers of FAS owned LionsXII and Courts Young Lions had hardly played all year round so it was no surprise they was not able to perform.
So is FAS teams understaffed or overstaffed!
The answer is obvious with a significant number of players in both teams just there to make up the numbers and FAS will rather call up players to sit on the bench than allowed a promising one to stay with clubs thus losing out if he make the grade.
This is the impression one must get as 2 years ago, Tampines was also treated in a similar way over Shahdan Sulaiman when he must joined Courts Young Lions because of national interest.
In that case, why spend any money on COEs for Balestier could spend it on their seniors, allowing the club to retain Qiu Li, like what FAS does with LionsXII considering how they see it fit they only spend a combined $800k on COEs while LionsXII is at several times more at over $2miilion to $3million.
The glory is instant, unlike now where the results are uncertain and even if there are rewards, what are the chances FAS will not change the rules to deny Balestier after they spend much time, efforts and money on it.
Yet, you, Mr S.Thavaneson, still accepts such a raw deal because your commitment to developing Singapore football override all reasons.
For you are not stupid or naive having been involved in Singapore football since the semi-pro Singapore Premier League (SPL) days and having been backstabbed many times as well.
Still each time, you still commit the time, effort and money to Singapore football whenever they needed it.
You deserved to be honoured more than the current inept FAS president for his actions and commitment paled in comparison but I know only FAS presidents are ever honoured.
That is why, the very least I can do is thanks you on this blog for you deserved it and much more.
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