Madura United have rushed into the off-season transfer window in an effort to strengthen ahead of the 2019 Indonesian Liga 1 season. Despite the fact that next season’s schedule is yet to be released, Laskar Sape Kerrab have already secured seven names for their squad, becoming the busiest team in the division.
The club from Madura island finished the 2018 season in the 8th position. Club CEO Haruna Soemitro said they will rebuild the team for upcoming season with several new players.
“After what we achieve last season, we have only re-signed 40% of the squad for upcoming season. We have total 28 players on the senior team, it means 11 or 12 players will stay with us in 2019” he said, as per the club’s official website.
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Zah Rahan Krangar became the first foreign players to get a contract extension contract with Madura United. Previously, they also signed Australian midfielder, Dane Milovanovic, to filll their AFC Asian Foreign Player slot until the end of 2020.
According to reports, there are six local players who will stay with the red-and-whites. They include Nigerian-born naturalized striker Greg Nwokolo, the 2018 AFF Cup rising-star Alfath Fathier, goalkeeper Satria Tama, defender Guntur Ariyadi and two recently promoted U-19 players, Rifad Marasabessy and Irsan Lestaluhu.
Greg re-signed with Madura United until 2020, while Alfath renewed his contract until the end of 2019 season with an option to extend for a further year. Rifad and Irsan have become Madura United’s long-term invest, as they have made the step up to the first team in excess of the league’s U-22 player requirements.
“Their appearances on the U-19 national team and their experiences with the clubs, both in Madura United U-19 or when they having a chance played with the senior team, is the reason why they fully contracted for upcoming season,” said Haruna.
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Madura United also linked with title-winning coach Stefano Cuggura for next season, as the club didn’t renew the contract of Gomes de Oliviera. However, the Brazilian coach who successfully secured the league title for Persija Jakarta after 17 years of waiting likely will stay with Macan Kemayoran in 2019.
Meanwhile Persib Bandung will announce their technical director, Miljan Radovic, as the new coach for upcoming season. The Montenegrin, who also played for Maung Bandung in 2011 – 2012, will replaced coach Mario Gomez, who is linked with Bali United.
Bali United’s CEO, Yabes Tanuri, already given a ‘green-light’ for two players to stay with them in 2019. They are club’s captain Fadil Sausu and star man Stefano Lilipaly. Meanwhile, Malian defender Mahamadou N’Diaye has been linked with a move to a French Ligue 2 club after spending the last six months with Bali United.
Additionally, the side reportedly have an interested in PSIS Semarang’s defender, Haudi Abdillah, to fill the hole in defensive area left by N’Diaye. In addition, Serdadu Tridatu are also keeping an eye on the situation of Persija’s defender, Gunawan Dwi Cahyo, to strengthen their team in 2019.
The Liga 1 2017 champions, Bhayangkara FC, seem unlikely to sign Rachmad Hidayat (PSMS Medan) and Saddil Ramdani (Persela Lamongan), who were previously expected to join the capital club.