Coach Park's overtures rejected because of his short temper: Malaysia football chief

By Trung Thu   January 8, 2024 | 06:56 pm PT
Coach Park's overtures rejected because of his short temper: Malaysia football chief
Vietnam national coach Park Hang-seo signals Malaysian fans to stay silent during the teams' World Cup qualifying game in June 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong
Football Association of Malaysia president Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin said he did not choose Park Hang-seo as national coach because of his temper.

"Other FAM members liked him, but I didn't," he told Malaysian TV channel Astro Arena on Sunday. "There was a moment when he was too provocative and that crossed a line for me."

He was referring to a 2022 World Cup second qualifying round match in June 2021 in the UAE in which Vietnam beat Malaysia 2-1.

At the end of the match Park became furious when he saw Liridon Krasniqi commit a dangerous foul on Nguyen Phong Hong Duy right next to the Vietnamese technical area.

Park received a yellow card for his furious reaction. He was then provoked by Malaysian fans and players, and he put an index finger on his lips, signaling them to stay silent.

After the match Park celebrated with the coaching staff before glaring at the Malaysian fans and players.

Assistant coach Lee Young-jin had to drag him along to shake hands with Malaysian coach Tan Cheng Hoe.

During his six years with Vietnam, Park was also involved in other controversies regarding provocation during matches.

Hamidin said his short temper was the reason Malaysia did not sign up Park to replace Tan after defeat in the 2020 AFF Cup that was played in December 2021 due to Covid.

At that time Park had been open to leaving Vietnam after a loss to arch-rival Thailand in the semifinal.

Hamidin claimed Park had been ready to terminate his contract with Vietnam and coach Malaysia.

In the end, FAM chose another South Korean, Kim Pan-gon, the former national coach of Hong Kong.

Park continued with Vietnam until his contract expired in January 2023. In the group stage of the 2022 AFF Cup Vietnam defeated Malaysia 3-0. It was Park's last tournament with Vietnam, who lost 2-3 to Thailand in the finals.

Vietnam did not lose once to Malaysia under coach Park. In the 2018 AFF Cup they won 2-0 in the group stage, drew 2-2 in the first leg of the final and won 1-0 in the second. In the 2022 World Cup second qualifying round, Vietnam won 1-0 and 2-1 in another home-and-away encounter.

Hamidin's comments have sparked a debate among fans and media in Malaysia.

Newspaper Makanbola said the face of Malaysian football would have changed if the association had accepted Park’s offer.

There has been much speculation about Park’s next assignment, with rumors of interest from Thailand, Singapore and China.

Currently, he is running a youth football academy in Vietnam.

go to top