Kelantan among four Malaysian teams docked points, threatened with transfer ban
The four teams were also handed transfer bans in the coming mid-season transfer window if they fail to produce supporting documents regarding the settlement of debts – including players’ salaries, provident funds, income tax and insurance payments – by May 15.
The deductions saw Kelantan drop from fifth in the MSL standings to seventh and are just one point above the relegation zone. T-Team, who are level on points with the Red Warriors, are in eighth due to their goal difference.
The semi-transfer ban was given so there is some room for teams to get things in order
Perlis stay at the bottom of the MPL and have now lost all points they had collected this season, while ATM drop into the relegation zone from ninth place with four points.
Interestingly, the teams are free to sell or purchase players so long as they do not exceed their current spending.
This could lead to a potential back-door route to transfers as it is an open secret that some teams have separate contracts with players to keep them off the books.
Football Malaysia Limited Liability Partnership (FMLLP) chief executive officer Kevin Ramalingam said: "The semi-transfer ban was given so there is some room for teams to get things in order. For an example, they can still make some money in the transfer window and not handicap themselves in the process."
FMLLP and Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) had received widespread critcism for their lack of action against errant teams in the past.
Kelantan have been repeated offenders on failing to settle their debts on time.
FMLLP revealed they had twice given the teams a deadline, first on December 31, 2016 and then extended to March 31, 2017, to submit all documents as listed above.
FMLLP also warned teams that failure to comply with regulations before October 31 would result in a demotion to the lower tier while further failure could result in being barred from competing altogether next year.