Sunday, June 25, 2006

Indonesia was in the World Cup!

If somebody asks if the Indonesians were present in the Soccer World Cup, then the answer is yes. But they were not under red-and-white flag and Indonesia Raya national anthem, but under red-white-blue under the name "Dutch East Indies". It was in 1938, Indonesians were the first Asians playing in the World Cup.
After proclamation of independence, Indonesia still had a good soccer team. In 1958 qualification matches they beat the Chinese but then didn't proceed because Indonesia refused to play with Israeli team. After some political turmoil till now Indonesia never even qualifies itself to come to the first round of the World Cup.
Agusman Effendi, acting chairman of the PSSI (Indonesian Soccer Association) when answering when Indonesia is able to come in the World Cup said that the time is approximately around 2018. From now it is 12 years more to come. Is it not even too optimistic?
We need more investment in open spaces, in standard soccer fields, in talent training camps. Otherwise, let Indonesians dream when they wake up only to watch their television in the late night - to watch the World cup teams compete - which none is theirs.