Ong Kim Swee announces 23-man squad for ‘uncertain’ North Korean tie

Malaysia’s national football head coach Datuk Ong Kim Swee has announced his 23-man squad ahead of the 2019 Asia Cup Qualifiers scheduled to take place end of this month.

The 23-man squad will be prepping for the matches at the Harimau Malaysia training camp in Wisma FAM, Kelana Jaya, starting 13th of March.

The Harimau Malaysia squad will be taking on Philippines at the Rizal Memorial Stadium, Manila on the 22nd of March, followed by a controversy-laced fixture against North Korea on the 28th of March. Venue for latter has yet to be decided.


In pursuit of bolstering the Harimau Malaysia quad, Datuk Ong Kim Swee has made some changes to his 23-man squad.

Datuk Ong Kim Swee has dropped Malaysia’s go-to goalkeeper, Khairul Fahmi Che Mat in favour of 23-year old Muhamad Hafizul Hakim from Perak. Another new name in the goalkeeping department is Mohd Farizal Harun from FELDA United, alongside Khairulazhan from Selangor.

Photo: FAM

Apart from the Kelantanese, Datuk Ong Kim has also dropped the likes of Irfan Fazail from JDT II, crowd-favourite Ahmad Fakri Sarani from Kedah, Darren Lok from JDT, and Norshahrul Idlan Talaha from FELDA United.

Datuk Ong Kim Swee’s filled in the missing pieces with new names Mohd Afif Amiruddin from Pahang, Khair Muhammad Jefri Jones from Melaka, Mohamad Nasir Basharudin from Perak, and Muhammad Akram Mahinan from Kedah.

The Harimau Malaysia squad will be making their way to the Philippines on the 20th January for 2019 Asia Cup qualifiers. As for the match against North Korea, we’re still waiting to hear from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) for the verdict on the neutral venue.

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