PIP trainee Spain bound for training programme

|     Fadhil Yunus     |

PROJEK Ikan Pusu (PIP) young local trainee Mohammad Ateeq Hishan bin Zainal Abidin has been selected for a two-week Under-12 Years international football training programme at the world-renowned Barcelona FC Football Academy in Spain from March 15 – 29.

Mohammad Ateeq Hishan is among the 32 young talented under-12 players from Southeast Asian countries who were auditioned and identified by the organisers, Barcelona FC Football Academy and Astro Television Malaysia, for the training camp in Spain.

The young talent is currently in the books of PIP and has impressed the head coach with his qualities and ongoing development, especially during training.

“Ateeq has shown a lot of potential and has progressed steadily in his football skills at Projek Ikan Pusu – especially during the last few years. He is also a regular in the PIP line-up that performed during the Brunei DPMM FC MatchDay Magazine’s half-time exhibition matches during Brunei DPMM FC’s S League home games at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in the 2016 and 2017 seasons,” revealed PIP head coach Haji Omar bin Haji Jamil.

“PIP is very proud of Ateeq and it is all due to his good attitude, dedication and focus during training that sets him apart. His hard work has now paid off handsomely as this is a very rare opportunity, and definitely an achievement that makes us, PIP coaches, proud.

“I would like to thank our coaches for collectively making Ateeq into the player he is today – full of potential and promise for the future,” Haji Omar added.

Mohammad Ateeq Hishan in action during the NFABD Under-12 Years Tournament. – FADHIL YUNUS

Echoing similar sentiments, Cheah Swee Ming, PIP manager, said that the grassroots development programme has been steadily producing and supplying quality football players for all Brunei national football teams (all age groups) for the last 18 years since 2001 and Ateeq is the most talented.

“I would like to congratulate Ateeq and also his very supportive parents and siblings who are always present during his training sessions.

“As we are all aware, very strong support from the family is important at this young age. I am sure his two-week training stint in Barcelona will do him a world of good,” the manager continued.

It is also hoped that Mohammad Ateeq Hishan, who is affectionately known as Ateeq, could hit new heights playing for a foreign club outside these shores.

“Though PIP has achieved many milestones over the last 18 years, I nevertheless hope that Ateeq will help us to go one better – which is to eventually become the first Pusu to play at the highest levels of international professional football. PIP looks forward to that day in anticipation.”

Mohammad Ateeq has certainly made his presence known as the most recent talent of a long list of players to come out from the PIP conveyor belt after impressing at national level.

Mohammad Ateeq Hishan, who is currently enrolled at the Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Secondary School, won the ‘Best Player Award’ during the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) Under-12 Championship in December 2017.

The young trainee was unable to participate in the Brunei DPMM FC Football Fanfare because of his preparations for the Barca trip.