Geylang International FC

Interview: Jalal Jasim

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Fast, skilful and packed with strength that belies his physical size, Jalal is one of the few players in Geylang International FC who have clocked three decades in age. The former winger turned left-back is one of the consistent players in the team and also comes equipped with a pin-point passing ability honed by years of experience. Most ladies, especially his wife, will agree that he also packs a deadly smile.

Making his entry into the football scene with Jurong FC’s Prime League team in 1997, Jalal went on to play with eight other teams in the S-League, including Geylang International FC.

The Eagles’ very own baby-faced veteran lets us in on a bit about himself.

History with football

It was probably when I was 12 years old. My elder brother used to play football socially a lot. You know, like void decks, basketball courts and such. So everytime I see him play then, I would join in and play along. I can say it was from there that my passion and love for football grew and I began harbouring a desire to play professionally.

I played as a midfielder for Jago Primary and St Thomas Secondary. In 1997, my friends asked me along to Jurong FC’s trials for the Prime League team and I got selected by Coach Sini. After that, I never played for my ITE as I wanted to concentrate on my football with Jurong FC.  That was when my career began to take off and I achieved my dreams of becoming a professional footballer.

Becoming an Eagle

After my contract with Woodlands Wellington FC expired, I received a call from then Coach Mike Wong. He asked me if I would be interested to play for the Eagles and I agreed. When Coach Kanan took over, he tried me out in the Left-Back position in the last few games of last season and I have stayed there since. He said he preferred me in that role and I am happy to play my part for the team.

Thoughts on current team

This team is a very motivated bunch and we help each other a lot, especially on the field. Like for example when the chips are down in a game, they would continually spur each other on and never lost spirit. It is not all the time that a player can say this but I do like my team-mates a lot. As everyone can see now, our performances lately have been very strong and our form is good. We may have lost a couple of games but those defeats I feel was just us being unlucky. We are definitely getting better with each game.

Footballing future

I have been thinking about it, especially at my age, and I feel I still have a few more good years to give to football. I believe I can still play at the top level. I will continue to give my best in every game that I play.

My Family

My family is extremely supportive of my career, especially my sister, brother, mum and wife. My wife also motivates me a lot and my son is also a form of motivation for me though, personally, I do not think my son will want to become a footballer. I mean, I have seen him running around and kicking a ball but he prefers to eat and sleep. Haha.

Playing History

1997-1999: Jurong FC
2000-2002: Tampnes Rovers FC
2003-2004: (NS) Home United & Young Lions(late half of ’04)
2005: Balestier Khalsa FC
2006-2008: Gombak Utd FC
2009: Woodlands Wellington FC
2010: Sengkang Punggol FC
2011: Woodlands Wellington FC
2012-present: Geylang International FC

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