MINISTER of Youth and Sports Zainudin Amali emphasized that naturalization or granting citizenship to prospective soccer national team players is a short-term solution to accelerate the achievements of the Indonesian national team.
This was conveyed by Zainudin in response to the naturalization process for Dutch footballer Shayne Pattynama which had received approval from Commission X DPR RI, earlier this week.
Before Shayne, PSSI had also submitted two foreign players, namely Jordi Amat and Sandy Walsh, to be approved as Indonesian citizens. Both are now just waiting for the moment to take the oath as Indonesian citizens.
Also read: DPR Commission X Approves Shayne Pattynama to Become Indonesian Citizen
Zainudin doesn’t want naturalization to be the only option to improve the national team’s achievements. PSSI, he said, must still prioritize the development of young domestic athletes.
“Therefore, we really need players like the two people we have naturalized (Jordi Amat and Sandy Walsh) plus today’s Shayne Elian Jay Pattynama. But once again, we still rely on coaching because our talent is not lacking, the academy- the academies at the clubs also carry out coaching,” the Menpora said in a press release, quoted on Friday (11/11).
“So we don’t rely on naturalization. Naturalization is a short term,” he asserted.
The Golkar politician did not deny that naturalization was also needed because there were urgent interests, one of which was the need for the senior national team to play FIFA Matchday and AFF Cup matches in order to increase Indonesia’s ranking.
Zainudin said, in an effort to support early childhood football development, President Joko Widodo last August launched the Papua Football Academy (PFA) in Jayapura.
PFA is a school for Papuan boys with an age range of 14-15 years to hone their talents in sports, especially football.
According to the President, at the academy, children will be trained in discipline with regular exercises accompanied by trainers with a good reputation.
“That is our commitment with PSSI. Even now as a manifestation of that commitment, for early childhood development PSSI and the Ministry of Youth and Sports are working together to conduct coach courses for former national team players which are currently taking place in Bali,” said Zainudin.
Through this course, it is hoped that domestic coaches will have a C certificate so that these coaches have a reputation and qualified ability to be able to train young children as future soccer players.
“Hopefully the results we produce together will bring progress to Indonesian football,” he concluded. (Ant/OL-1)