Opinion: Brunei NFABD need long-term planning


Long-term planning needed for national football team’s betterment

THE Brunei Darussalam national football team were unfortunate not to get through to the next stage of the FIFA World Cup qualifiers.

Despite notching a win against Mongolia in the home game, they were knocked out on aggregate.

It was evident that the players worked their socks off during the match and had a solid performance.

The national team which played against Mongolia were brought together under Robbie Servais and trained only for a short time together.

Robbie Servais was only brought in for six weeks. Imagine if the team had more time to train together and play according to the coach’s philosophy, I believe that we would have made it further.

The National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) has done much to help the footballing scene; however, they need to start planning the national team in the long-term.



They need to bring in a coach and give him more time to adjust and train the team.

Not only that, in the letter ‘Don’t disband recent national football team’ by Ugan Brunei published in the Opinion page of the Weekend Bulletin on June 22, the writer mentioned that the national team should not be disbanded.

I agree with this with some amendments.

Keep the core of the team together, add on players based on merit and let them build chemistry together.

As mentioned by Ugan, there are more tournaments in the near future.

However, we should not be complacent and take these tournaments lightly (ie: training only for a month or two in preparation). We should keep holding regular training sessions and organise friendlies with other nations.

Imagine the scenario if we had gotten through the qualifiers.

We would have eight FIFA A-Class International matches spread out over the next two years.

These matches would be against the likes of Iran, Japan, South Korea, Qatar, Australia, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and China.

With four home games, we could see an influx of football fans from these countries which can help the budding tourism industry.

Our national football players would also receive international exposure which even DPMM FC players would not get in the Singapore Premier League.

They will have the eyes of international scouts who are curious about our players and if we’re lucky, maybe even sign them for overseas clubs.



With Brunei media covering these matches, the players would be household names thus allowing them to have sponsorship deals which in turn adds revenue and incentive and more.

And this is only if we had gotten through the qualifiers.

Brunei’s football is slowly getting to the point where we can challenge internationally and it is only a matter of time till we reach that standard.

In the meantime, let us keep dreaming of that World Cup participation.

– Footie Fanatic


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