Spotlight on Brunei football

Fadhil Yunus

The footballing landscape in Brunei Darussalam took centrestage in the FIFA website as part of the Global Game series recently.

The exclusive feature, titled ‘Young Brunei Darussalam building on its old football tradition’, focusses on football in places away from the spotlight, according to the world football governing body.

Kota Ranger forward Adi Said and DPMM FC striker Razimie Ramlli were also featured following their heroics in separate World Cup qualifying campaigns.

The feature recognised Brunei’s breakthrough in the international scene with triumphs on home soil and away in 2015 and 2019, albeit both two-legged ties ended in defeats by aggregate.

It highlighted the founding of the then-called Brunei State Football Amateur Association in 1956 as well as the national leagues with the formation of the Brunei Premier League in 2002 and the Brunei Super League in 2012.

National team players during a training session. PHOTO: FADHIL YUNUS

Brunei has made considerable progress since they became affiliated with FIFA in 1972 and has plans to enhance youth development.

“We have a few plans in mind to increase the number of children playing football,” National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) Technical Director Sivaji Narayanan was quoted as saying to FIFA.com.

The technical director added that talent centres will be established in the country to create more opportunities, while the development of youth coaches will be enhanced.

The Wasps, ranked 191st in the latest FIFA world rankings, will look to climb up the ladder as they begin preparations for the

possible participation in the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup next year.

An image of national youth player Md Addy Zaky Billah bin Haji Awang Raimi celebrating a goal with his teammates during his side’s historic 2-0 victory against Cambodia in the 2017 AFF Under-16 Youth Championship in Chonburi, Thailand also emerged. DPMM FC teenage star Md Hakeme Yazid bin Said and Kasuka FC talent Md Aisan Aizuddin Abdullah bin Md Aiman were also notable names in the squad.

Brunei previously appeared in the FIFA website during the visit of FIFA President Gianni Infantino last October.

The next feature as part of the Global Game series will be Tajikistan, which is affiliated under the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).