Dr Mahathir meets the players at the Perdana Putra in Putrajaya yesterday. Also seen is FAM president Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin (second right). Bernama photo
PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has issued a loud and clear message to the national squad to not let the country down when they face Vietnam in the AFF Suzuki Cup final.
He met the squad at Perdana Putra yesterday ahead of the first leg match at National Stadium in Bukit Jalil on Dec 11.
We must win so that we can be proud of the countrys ability. As Malaysians, we are responsible for defending the dignity and honour of the country, he said, adding that he would be watching the game at the stadium.
Also present at the event were Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) president Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin, head coach Tan Cheng Hoe and skipper Zaquan Adha Abdul Razak.
Hamidin also presented Dr Mahathir with a No.7 jersey.
Malaysia will travel to Hanoi for the second leg tie on Dec 15.
Dr Mahathir told the players to be disciplined in their training and have the passion and hunger for success.
I hope you will work hard and practice a lot. Live, sleep and think only of football and winning for Malaysia, he said.
Dr Mahathir also hoped that Malaysia would one day qualify for the World Cup.
Malaysia were once a strong force in football, now the country is being left behind, he said.
He said Japan had achieved great success and are a very good team although they used to trail Malaysia once.
Because they trained diligently, Japan have improved so much that they have even qualified for the World Cup. So, I want to see Malaysia compete in the World Cup one day, he said. Bernama
SUMBER : theborneopost.com