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Wednesday, September 28, 2011
The first-class national stadium at Kaohsiung
I had to choke back the vitriol when I read on the AFC website that the AFC suits had publicly praised the local organising committee for hosting the AFC President's Cup final stage so well. Yes, that's the same committee who sent Phnom Penh Crown to a training session on the eve of the final where there was no grass surface available to use, the same committee who provided us with a liaison officer who was worse than useless, they promised live online screening of the match that didn't happen, there were numerous other 'jobsworth' incidents that left a bitter taste, including their failure to provide us with a DVD of the final match before our departure, despite being asked numerous times. The first chance we had to see highlights from the final was on YouTube. That simply isn't good enough. Personally, I didn't think it was a good idea to corral all six teams in the same hotel and Taipower's late-night fleeing under armed police guard after the final reflected that. Admittedly, the stadium for the final stage was about as good as it gets and is definitely a blueprint for a national stadium that Cambodia would do well to look at. The facilities at the stadium were first-class. The AFC also announced that Myanmar look set to join the second-tier cup competition, the AFC Cup, next season after getting off their arse and doing something about meeting the qualification standards, which the Cambodian Federation failed miserably to do, whilst their replacements in the AFC President's Cup may well be Mongolia, where FC Ulaanbaatar have just won the national championships.