Red Giants shift to smaller UiTM stadium

SELANGOR coach B. Satiananthan won’t kick up a fuss though his team will have to play at a much smaller stadium for the remaining of their Super League season.

The FA of Selangor announced yesterday that the Red Giants will stop playing their home matches at the run-down Shah Alam Stadium, which is in dire need of repair, but move to UiTM Stadium instead.

When the season resumes on August 26, Selangor will share the UiTM Stadium with the UiTM FC Super League team.

Satiananthan, looking at the positive side of playing at a smaller venue, said his players can hear better when he shouts at them.

If they were at the giant 80,000-capacity Shah Alam Stadium which has been Selangor’s home since 1994, it would be harder for Satiananthan to “communicate” with the Selangor players.

With no fans around due to the Covid-19 SOP, the Selangor coach said: “It is better to play in a smaller stadium because when I shout, you can hear and as long as the ground is okay, it’s fine.

“Shah Alam Stadium is under repair, so it’s not safe from what I have heard. So I have to respect that decision plus it would be cost effective as well.”

Satiananthan said although the Selangor team’s other option was the PJ Stadium, the dates of the home matches would clash with PJ City team’s, and that is one of the reasons why they chose UiTM Stadium.

“I think going by the field and environment, it (UiTM Stadium) is suitable for us at the moment,” he added.

FA of Selangor (FAS) secretary general Dr Johan Kamal Hamidon said they decided to shift to UiTM Stadium as the association do not want to be stymied by the uncertainties over Shah Alam Stadium.

“In April, I mentioned that the work done (on the stadium) was very preliminary and it was a simple removal of the pieces that were broken off (polycarbonate roof). But it doesn’t solve the root of the problem,” said Johan.

“Over time, the problem keeps coming back and we didn’t want to spend our energy going back and forth with this. We want it to be repaired for good.”

He said the FAS were earlier trying to get the Shah Alam Stadium repaired as many fans had already bought 2020 season passes (which can be used for next year).

“The fact that no fans will be allowed in to watch the matches (when the league resumes) is a big factor for the decision to move (to UiTM Stadium).

In February, Timesport reported that the Shah Alam Stadium was blacklisted by the Malaysian Football League as the venue was not certified fit for play due to the poor conditions of the roof.

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