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 By John Duerden

Ex-Home United boss Robert Alberts signs four-year PSM contract

Former Home United coach Robert Alberts is looking to build something special at PSM Makassar after signing a four-year contract extension with the Indonesian club.

PSM finished third in the 2017 Indonesia Liga 1 and there was speculation that the Dutchman would leave for Malaysia or Thailand. He has committed himself, however, to the South Sulawesi club until 2021.

"I got offers from other teams," Alberts told ESPN FC. "But the future here is bright. We are looking at the long-term and the new management has the same philosophy as me."

Alberts is already scouting young talent ahead of next season, and is being linked with former Arema defender Viktor Igbonefo, who plays for Thai team Nakhon Ratchasima. He wants to put the correct infrastructure in place for the long term.

"We want to make this a real club, with an academy a youth-set up and coaches and make it sustainable. Right now, there is only one team and that is not sustainable. We want to move forward and make PSM one of the powerhouses in the country."

PSM CEO Munafri Arifuddin was happy to keep his experienced Dutchman.

Sarawak coach Robert Alberts
Dutch coach Robert Alberts has won titles in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.

"We are looking forward to continuing our work together," he said. "We want a long-term process for coaching in the hope that we can develop young players in the club."

While Alberts and the club are looking forward, there is some unfinished business from last season. PSM finished third, but were unhappy after the referee was changed at the last minute in their vital match with second-placed Bali United in the penultimate match of the season.

Bali won 1-0 with a last-minute goal to end PSM's chances.

In the end, Bhayangkara took top spot. There is also speculation whether coach Simon McMenemy will stay at the newly crowned champions.

"I have another year contract on my contract here and I am very happy at Bhayangkara and would not consider leaving for another club in Indonesia," McMenemy told ESPN FC.

Only a move to bigger league would be of interest to the British boss.

"If there are windows of opportunity to move to a higher level then it is something I would have to consider but I am happy where I am," he added.

Asian expert John Duerden is the author of Lions and Tigers: Story of Football in Singapore and Malaysia.Twitter: @JohnnyDuerden.

 

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