FourFourTwo's Telling It Like It Is: Issey Nakajima-Farran

Issey Nakajima-Farran is enjoying his football in Terengganu, but the Canadian international also knows a few small changes could help the Turtles surge up the Malaysia Super League ladder. In part two of our FourFourTwo series ‘Telling it like it is’, these are Issey’s thoughts in his own words…

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I do realise that being a foreign player in Malaysia, and being outspoken, I have to be careful. We are easily replaced.

I really want to make this club better than what it has been. I see a lot of potential here

But I don't want to be that foreigner who comes and goes. I want to make an impact and share my experience in a constructive way. I really want to bring the best of football to this town. This is my intention.

For the love of the game, the town and the people I have met here.

I am getting a lot of messages on social media. Let me be clear – I love this state and I really love my football here. I came here to win something. I saw Terengganu as a project, not just a place to come to collect a salary.

As I said on social media, I was disappointed to see [former Turtles coach] Mike [Mulvey] go. I am not blaming anyone, I am portraying my thoughts in what I think is a respectable manner. As a foreign player, I really want to make this club better than what it has been. I see a lot of potential here and it just needs the right guidance.

mike mulvey terengganu coach

Issey was disappointed to see Mulvey depart the Turtles

The president and the players had a sit down at the beginning of the year to talk about the improvement we needed for the growth of the club regarding facilities, making our training pitch private – all the same details that any professional club should have.

So I really thought we were heading in the right direction, but none of it has been addressed and that is the problem.

I have played for 13 teams or so in my career. When a foreign player comes to a new country, it takes at least two, three, even six months to get to know the players, the style, the timing and movement. It takes time to settle and I think it is the same for coaches.

I really thought we were heading in the right direction with Mike coming in. Mike wanted certain players in his squad, wanted video referencing to be introduced, some supplements, injury prevention and a lot of things to increase the level of the players that we have and also improve the strength of the squad with certain tactics. This is what modern football is all about.

It is not just about saying 'we have to win today's game'. It’s also about getting your point across on the training pitch.

If the pitch is not at a good standard, other local teams are using it, and the ball is bobbling all over the place while you’re trying to do shooting practice, it can lead to negative training and you start to get frustrated. These are the points we’ve been trying to get across to the state.

[Concluded on the next page with Issey's thoughts on training, scouting and fans]