We refute allegations by former international Datuk Jamal Nasir and observer Zakaria Rahim that Johor Darul Ta’zim FC (JDT) are responsible for Safawi Rasid’s current loss of form because he was making good progress following his injury prior to leaving the club for international duty.

For the record, Safawi got injured on March 13 and only returned to the starting line-up on April 16 but was still on the recovery road to full form. All in all, Safawi scored two goals, made five starts, came off the bench three times and played 364 minutes before the international break.

To say that training intensity is wholely the responsibility of clubs is not accurate due to the long training camp by national team as players were away from May 16 – June 16.

Safawi’s recovery journey and return to high intensity was still a work in progress before the international break. Safawi only returned to JDT one week before the AFC Champions League, flying directly to Thailand from United Arab Emirates. The club will nurture Safawi’s return full form, high intensity football and rebuild his confidence levels in coming weeks.

Alistair Edwards, Johor Darul Ta’zim FC Technical Director

Hidup Johor Demi Johor