Malaysia acid-attack footballer in 'critical but stable' condition

By AFP   May 7, 2024 | 03:38 am PT
A Malaysian national team footballer who was the victim of an acid attack is in a "critical but stable" condition Tuesday with fourth-degree burns that will require more surgery, a football official told AFP.

Faisal Halim suffered burns on the neck, shoulder, hands and chest in Petaling Jaya district outside the capital Kuala Lumpur over the weekend.

Nicknamed "Mickey", the 26-year-old plays on the right wing for Selangor Football Club and Malaysia.

"I am at the hospital. Faisal's condition is a bit critical but stable," Football Association of Selangor deputy president Shahril Mokhtar told AFP via a text message.

He said Faisal was initially diagnosed as having suffered second-degree burns, "but after he was moved to another hospital, a plastic surgeon classified the injuries as fourth-degree burns."

Shahril said Faisal would undergo another surgery, adding that his movement and speech had been affected.

"We are shocked and disappointed that such an attack happened in Malaysia. My concern is also about the mental health of the other players since the new season begins on Friday," he said.

Faisal Halim at an AFF Cup press conference in Hanoi on Dec. 26, 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

Faisal Halim at an AFF Cup press conference in Hanoi on Dec. 26, 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

CEO of Selangor Football Club Johan Kamal Hamidon said security has been heightened for the players, officials and staff of the club but he did not elaborate.

Selangor state police chief Hussein Omar Khan told reporters that investigations over the motive for the attack continued and that two suspects had been arrested.

A photo that went viral online showed a visibly shocked and shirtless Faisal seated on a bench with burn marks on his upper body.

The acid attack came three days after another national team player, Akhyar Rashid, was injured in a robbery outside his home in the eastern state of Terengganu.

Kuala Terengganu police chief Azli Mohamad Noor said the incidents were unrelated.

Football Association of Malaysia president Hamidin Mohamad Amin urged high-profile footballers to take precautions about their personal safety, including hiring bodyguards.

"If you are a big player, you can consider what the overseas footballers are doing, which is to get a bodyguard," he was quoted as saying by The Star newspaper.

go to top