The legendary Michael Owen paid a visit to the youngsters of Selangor’s U19 football team and gave them a ‘Striker Masterclass’ at the SUK Field in Shah Alam on Tuesday.
Also present during the event was the president of Football Association of Selangor (FAS), Tengku Amir Shah Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah.
While watching them play, Owen could see that they are really driven to become good players and its good to see them out on the field as it is hard to get young people to play any type of sports nowadays.
In a press conference, Owen said,
“It is great to see so many young potential players in this amazing club. I enjoyed my time talking to them and watching them train.
“I really hope some of the questions that they asked me would be beneficial for them in the future.
“Football is a very competitive game, and to get to the very top is everybody’s dream. I hope some of these players can make long careers and they’re a fantastic club.”
Owen also mentioned that the structures of football in Malaysia is different from the structures in England and he’s overwhelmed with all the efforts that have been done to push the young players into going further in the industry here.
To make it big in football, one must have love and passion towards the game, and this should start at an early age. Moreover, they should be guided by a system to produce more potential young Malaysian players.
“We need to push the talented players to get better and better. And it doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be difficult for them to be playing in the senior team.
“I see talented players here today and I hope they have the right pathway for them to become professional footballers.”
When talking about the involvement of foreign players playing in local teams, Owen took it in a positive perspective by saying that these foreign players will very much become idols and aspiring role models for the rising footballers.
These young players need figures to look up to and with the balance of local and foreign players, hence, it is a very good opportunity for the youngsters to be inspired by the foreigners.
When asked about the future of FAS for the young players, Tengku Amir Shah Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah said,
“FAS is currently looking at the developments outside the club, we’re creating youth leagues and trying to get all these young players from schools to get playing more and to let them build passion towards the game.
“When you love football, that’s where you become hungry to win and you work harder everyday.
“You need to have some to look up to and for Owen to share how he works and his experiences back in his days, I think these boys will definitely take away great input on that one.”
The team were very lucky to have met Owen in person as he shared many experiences and tips with the young players.
May his presence give the uprising footballers some good ball kicking spirit!
Written by Fatin Zafirah