SSC appoints David Usop as head of technical coaching

David Usop (file picture)

By Martin Yee

KUCHING, Feb 18: Former Sarawak coach David Usop had been appointed as the head of technical coaching by the Sarawak Sports Corporation (SSC), Football Association of Sarawak (FAS) joint youth development project to oversee grassroots development.

Usop who is FAS under 19 coach in his last appointment will help oversee the development of football in Sarawak and in building up a structure with emphasis on grassroots development.

A coach who was famous as one of the assistant under former Sarawak Dutch coach Robert Alberts to achieve the unbeaten “Invincibles” tag in the 2013 season to winning the Premier League title and earning promotion to the Super league.

He will be tasked with drawing up a roadmap and the organizing of seminars to upgrade the quality of coaches from the various development centres setup in specially selected schools and clubs with assistance from FAM or the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) and Football Association of Sarawak or FAS as these two associations have the manpower and specialists in the various fields of coaching and sports science.

“This is a long term project that will see results in 10 years or less and we will be putting our brains together and working with SSC and our first priority is also to upgrade the coaches by organizing seminars and to form a proper league.

“This is a joint project by FAS and SSC who provide the funding and other support which made this project viable and a step in the right direction in the development of quality players.

“Football development were not given a serious thought since the days of Alan Vest where football is not been given priority, and now with SSC assistance, we can start the project,” said David.

SSC is hoping the sport of football will gain its status as they had started off with a statewide badminton competitions circuit which is the first of its kind to be organized in the country.

SSC hopes their assistance in providing for the development of these sports which had not really been doing well at the national or Sukma level will add to the elite sports like tenpin bowling, wushu, swimming and diving or volleyball in which Sarawak had dominated for decades.

He said that the lack of technical officials in organizing these league competitions throughout the State can be overcome by the experts provided by FAS or FAM.

“Since the time of Alan Vest, we are not that serious in grassroots development but now we will have to sit down to learn how best to do grassroots development.

“This long term programme can see results in 10 years and we will be putting our heads together to come up with a roadmap and will be working with the SSC to do a league.

“Now modern football is very demanding as we have seen and learnt from the EPL for example where the players have to be professional on and off the field while football is played with very high intensity unlike in the past,” said David who was an understudy to Dutch coach Robert Alberts, M Rajacopal and also Sarawak chief coach in 2016.

“We will make changes to the Sarawak Cup that will suit developing new and young players and make it into a league where it will last a few months instead of only a few days on a tournament format.

“We might try to organize a junior league consisting of under 15, under 17 and Open category and now we will do grassroot development unlike in the past.

“For a start we will organize a lot of seminars to upgrade coaches and calling on the experts in the many fields from the FAM who could assist us and the high performance unit from SSC will also monitor and build up the players in sports science.

“Due to the Covet 19 pandemic, the SSC FAS development project will now be confined to planning as there are SOP restrictions to adhere to and the plans will put into action once the situation is more favourable,” he added. — DayakDaily