Government Knows Limits to Improve National Football


A national sports law expert as well as an observer of Indonesian football, Eko Noer Kristiyanto, the All-Indonesian Football Association (PSSI) will certainly still be involved in the transformation team that will be formed by the government and the World Football Federation (FIFA). The government will certainly not turn a blind eye to the prohibition on intervention, as happened in 2015.

“After all, the federation is FIFA’s best colleague. So the assumption that PSSI is not involved, I think, doesn’t make sense. The government had experience in 2015 when it was sanctioned by FIFA,” said Eko when contacted by Media Indonesia, Monday (10/10).

Many speculate that FIFA no longer trusts PSSI and will not be involved in the transformation plan of Indonesian football together with the government and the Asian Football Federation (AFC). This refers to a speech by President Joko Widodo who did not mention PSSI regarding a letter from FIFA which said Indonesia was not sanctioned and would form a transformation team.

Eko explained, the government certainly understands the limits that will be taken in the national football transformation plan after the Kanjuruhan tragedy, Malang Regency, East Java with the death toll reaching 131 people. He can not speculate about the structure of the team later. According to him, the government will not enter into the technical regulatory framework.

“The government can enter into infrastructure matters, how the stadium can meet safety standards. Regarding the technical aspects, PSSI and FIFA will later,” said Eko.

The spokesman for the PSSI Investigation Team in the Kanjuruhan tragedy, Ahmad Riyadh, said PSSI welcomed the government’s intention to facilitate the transformation team with FIFA and AFC. PSSI, he said, would certainly sit down with the team to improve the order of the national football competition.

“We are very grateful for the government’s quick response to improve Indonesian football. The government certainly understands about intervention, so we welcome this good plan. PSSI’s position will certainly be involved in how to better regulate and improve Indonesian football,” said Riyadh when contacted.

He added that the FIFA entourage of four people will come on October 13 to Indonesia. Meanwhile, FIFA President Gianni Infantino will join on October 18 after attending the 17th G20 Summit in Bali. “The plan is based on the request to have an office at the PSSI Office in Jakarta,” said Riyadh.

Meanwhile, Youth and Sports Minister Zainudin Amali said the government would be careful in taking steps related to the evaluation of the transformation team. Zainudin does not know the big picture regarding the discussions between FIFA, PSSI and the Government. PSSI, he said, had invited the upcoming meeting with FIFA to Indonesia.

“We just received an invitation from PSSI to gather together with FIFA, we don’t know the agenda yet, if I only received information from the letter sent to the President (Jokowi to FIFA) it was only that,” said Zainudin in Jakarta, Monday (10/10). 10).

Zainudin explained that the government knows the limits that will be taken to improve Indonesian football, including improvements in the PSSI body with the pressure that the PSSI General Chair resign from his position.

“It is impossible for us to enter into this matter. It is impossible for us to intervene in various matters. For sporting activities, the government facilitates and provides assistance according to what is needed. We give our best for Indonesian sports without interfering in the internal affairs of each federation. Not only football, but other sports, we treat it the same,” said Zainudin. (OL-12)