BY ZULHILMI ZAINAL Follow on Twitter
The Malaysian FA (FAM) on Friday announced that only 12 clubs are prepared to compete in Malaysia's top two tiers next season.
In the Malaysia Super League (MSL), nine out of the 12 sides have been given the go-ahead; Johor Darul Ta'zim (JDT), Kedah, Kuala Lumpur, Perak, Pahang, Selangor, Terengganu, Felda United and PJ City.
According to FAM's Club Licensing First Instance Body (FIB), out of the nine clubs, six of them have also obtained an Asian Football Confederation (AFC) license, which would allow them to compete in the 2020 AFC Champions League if they qualify. They are JDT, Kedah, Kuala Lumpur, Perak, Selangor and Terengganu.
Kuala Lumpur however will be relegated to the Malaysia Premier League (MPL), following the conclusion of this season's league campaign. The other relegated side; PKNP FC meanwhile have failed to obtain a top-tier license.
Two MSL clubs; Melaka United and PKNS FC have been given a conditional license, which requires them to fulfil the requirements by October 30 this year. Failure to do so will result in the temporary license to be revoked, and the clubs' demotion.
Meanwhile out of the second tier teams, only three sides; Negeri Sembilan, UITM FC and Sabah have secured a club license that will allow them to take part in the top two tiers.
Sabah are now clear to compete in the Super League as 2019 MPL champions, but the other promotional side, PDRM FA have only been given a temporary license, along with Pulau Pinang and Selangor United.
Kelantan, Sarawak and UKM FC meanwhile have failed to fulfil the licensing requirements, but they have been given until October 30 by FIB to meet the requirements. The failure to do so will result in their relegation to the third tier in 2020.
But those who have obtained the clearances are not completely safe. According to FIB, by December 15, the clubs will be required to submit proof that they do not have overdue wage, Employees' Provident Fund, tax, social security payments to be made, or their license will be withdrawn.
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