KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysia has blamed "excessive demands" from the Asian Football Confederation, including diplomatic status for its top officers, for its refusal to bid to retain the organisation's headquarters.
Malaysia has hosted the AFC's headquarters since 1965, and the country's first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman served as its president for 24 years.
But in July AFC president Mohamed Bin Hammam proposed shifting its base from an impressive eight-year-old facility on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur, and invited applications from the confederation's 46 member nations.
The Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) said Malaysia will not take part in the bid, rejecting AFC demands which it said included the gifting of land for its headquarters.
It said the regional sporting body had added "insult to injury" by issuing an October 31 deadline to comply with its demands if it wanted the AFC to remain in Malaysia.
"How could officials from a sports body be awarded diplomatic status? AFC is not under the UN, and the president is not a diplomat of any country, so what kind of conditions are these?" FAM general secretary Azzuddin Ahmad told AFP.
"Technically, Malaysia could lose AFC because we will not be part of the bidding process," he said.
"Emotions are running high now because the list of demands have been made public. They are supposed to service member countries in term of developing football in Asia instead of demanding excessively."
Bin Hammam's plan, unveiled during a meeting of the AFC's governing body, has come under fire from Malaysian figures including former AFC general secretary Peter Velappan.
He described the proposal as "a total disrespect to all Malaysian leaders and staff who have worked very hard to develop and promote football in Asia".
Last week AFC submitted a list of demands to Sports Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, which is to be met by month-end if its headquarters is to remain here, the state Bernama news agency reported.
The list included personal tax exemption for non-Malaysian AFC staff, a new office, interest-free loans and diplomatic status for the AFC office-bearers.
Ismail slammed Bin Hammam's move saying "don't threaten us," the Malay Mail newspaper quoted him as saying over the weekend.
"Enough is enough. I don't mind the list of demands but setting a deadline ... that's stretching it," he said.
"We've always been accommodating to both the national and international bodies. But there must be a compromise."
Ties between the FAM and the AFC soured last year when Malaysia decided to invite English Premier League side Manchester United for a friendly match during the Asian Cup tournament.
The AFC strongly criticised Malaysia's plan which it saw as drawing attention away from its premier event, and subsequently the Red Devils dropped their visit.
Malaysia co-hosted the Asian Cup along with Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam.
Azzuddin said the AFC's presence "will only be missed for sentimental reasons" but noted that the president has to secure a 70 percent approval from member countries before relocating the headquarters.
"The development of football here is still the responsibility of FAM. The AFC will still have to play their role to its members without prejudice even if they move out," he said.
|Uruguayan Primera Division Review: Racing go clear at top|
|Chilean Primera Division Review: President, coach clash doesn´t derail Colo Colo|
|Peruvian Primera Division Review: Melgar, Universitario remain undefeated|
|Brazilian Serie A Review: Sao Paulo beat leaders|
|Paraguayan Division Profesional Review: Nacional Asuncion win again|
|San Jose Earthquakes 1 Los Angeles Galaxy 1: Keane´s penalty miss proves costly|
|Milan progression encourages Inzaghi|
|Ligue 1 Review: Marseille revival continues as Lille stay unbeaten|
|La Liga Review: Valencia continue resurgence, Sevilla ignore goalkeeper crisis|
|Menez thrilled with Milan victory|
|Primeira Liga Review: Porto held at Guimaraes, Boavista claim first win|
|Serie A Review: Goals flow as Inter and Milan both win|
|Parma 4 Milan 5: Visitors triumph in nine-goal thriller|
|Galatasaray v Anderlecht: Unfancied pair meet in Turkey|
|Di Francesco: I would have gladly made 11 changes|
|Liga MX Review: America held by strugglers Universidad, Santos close in on leaders|
|Van Gaal focused on United trajectory|
|Borussia Dortmund v Arsenal: Familiar opponents renew rivalry|
|Championship Preview: Adams talks up Norwich, Wolves head to unbeaten Charlton|
|Bundesliga Review: Hamburg beaten again, Augsburg claim first points|
|Eredivisie Review: Cambuur humble rivals Groningen, Vitesse finally win|
|League Two Preview: Flitcroft urges Bury caution, Burton out to extend lead|
|Benfica v Zenit St. Petersburg: Battle of the high-fliers|
|Redknapp expected heavy United defeat|
|United can do much better, says Van Gaal|
|Benitez at a loss to explain Napoli defeat|
|Manchester United 4 QPR 0: Di Maria steals show on Falcao debut|
|League One Preview: Cotterill demands focus, Dickov bids to ease pressure|
|Monaco v Bayer Leverkusen: Hosts eye positive amid awful start|
|Mazzarri praises ´ideal´ Inter|
|Al Qadsia v Persipura: Kuwaitis seek place in third final|
|Liverpool v Ludogorets: Five-time winners back in the Champions League|
|Real Madrid v Basel: Break from La Liga woes for Ancelotti´s men|
|Inter 7 Sassuolo 0: Icardi hits hat-trick in rout|
|Nottingham Forest 1 Derby County 1: Scrambled equaliser earns visitors a point|
|CSL Review: Henan drop into bottom two after last-gasp equaliser|
|Juventus v Malmo: Allegri´s men aiming to crack Europe|
|Olympiacos v Atletico Madrid: Simeone´s men on crest of a wave|
|K. League Review: Top two earn narrow victories, Sangju Sangmu end winless run|
|Badstuber requires surgery on thigh injury|
|Godin: Our mentality remains|
|Bruce slams ´disrespectful´ Newcastle speculation|
|Pogba confirms Juve talks|
|Gotze expecting improvement at Bayern|
|Mancini interested in Portugal role|
|I was never close to United move - Muller|
|Welbeck impresses Wenger with debut display|
|Mourinho wary of Euro group rivals|
|Rio Ferdinand will never forgive ´biggest idiot´ Terry|
|MLS Review: New England win again, New York held|
|Erbil v Kitchee: Belencoso the key for Molina´s men|
|Al Hilal v Al Ain: Dalic happy with preparation|
|CONCACAF Champions League Preview: In-form Red Bulls travel to Canada|
|Casillas accepts fans´ criticism|
|Primeira Liga Review: Sporting held again, Rio Ave back to summit|
|La Liga Review: Atletico claim bragging rights, Neymar inspires Barca|
|Simeone hails impact of substitutes|
|Serie A Review: Juventus and Roma win ahead of Champions League action|
|Ancelotti vows to ´fix´ Real season|
|Allegri delights in ´special´ home debut|
|Ligue 1 Review: PSG stutter, Saint-Etienne respond|
|Eredivisie Review: AZ lose amid Van Basten confusion, Zwolle halt PSV run|
|Hummels to return to training|
|Hummels to return to training|
|Rodgers to keep faith with new faces|
|Pepe: Real need fans on side|
|Juventus 2 Udinese 0: Tevez and Marchisio seal the points|
|Lambert delighted with tactically terrific Villa|
|Real Madrid 1 Atletico Madrid 2: Arda strike settles derby|
|Bundesliga Review: Kagawa nets on return, Monchengladbach put pressure on Keller|
|Rodgers points to Liverpool tempo trouble|
|Scottish Premiership Review: McIntyre loses on Ross County bow|
|Messi is the best, declare Luis Enrique and Neymar|
|Senderos and Agbonlahor revel in Villa´s Anfield resilience|
|Blanc: We should have settled for 1-0|
|Blanc: We should have settled for 1-0|
|Kagawa: I had goosebumps the entire game|
|League Two Review: Burton extend lead as trio remain winless|
|Lukaku leaves Martinez elated|
|Liverpool 0 Aston Villa 1: Agbonlahor strikes as Villa revel on Merseyside again|
|Irvine rues individual errors|
|Pearson: Cambiasso´s game management is exceptional|
|Koeman: Southampton can improve on Newcastle demolition|
|Hughes eager to restore home comforts|
|Monk positive despite Chelsea defeat|
|Pardew defiant despite heavy defeat|
|League One Review: Bristol City go top, Dons hit five|
|Mourinho tempers Costa expectations|
|Ings hamstring injury to be assessed - Dyche|
|Championship Review: Fulham lose again, Norwich move into second|
|Guardiola hopeful over Badstuber injury|
|Poyet revels in unlikely draw|
|We deserved more - Pochettino|
|Rennes 1 Paris Saint-Germain 1: Ntep clinches point for hosts|
|Warnock hails Speroni after penalty save|
|Barcelona 2 Athletic Bilbao 0: Neymar double makes the difference|
|Southampton 4 Newcastle United 0: Pelle piles pressure on Pardew|
|West Brom 0 Everton 2: Lukaku and Mirallas fire visitors to victory|
|Sunderland 2 Tottenham 2: Kane error ensures spoils are shared|
|Stoke City 0 Leicester City 1: Ulloa continues hot streak in maiden win|
|Chelsea 4 Swansea City 2: Imperious Costa hits three as hosts come from behind|
|Crystal Palace 0 Burnley 0: Arfield miss costs visitors|
|Borussia Dortmund 3 Freiburg 1: Kagawa stars on Dortmund return|
|Bayern Munich 2 Stuttgart 0: Ribery on target in Bayern win|
|Wenger laments poor defending and Debuchy injury|
|Pellegrini fumes at ref Clattenburg|
|Arsenal 2 Manchester City 2: Demichelis header rescues point for visitors|
|J.League Review: Urawa Reds stretch lead as rivals slip up|
|Hull City v West Ham: Hernandez to wait for debut|
|Hughes yet to hold Stoke talks|
|More Britons should play abroad, says Bale|
|Toronto president not expecting Defoe to return|
|I knew I had to change - Sterling|
|MLS Review: Sporting, Sounders claim wins|
|Ferdinand: United shirked farewell|
|Godin: Too difficult to leave Atletico|
|Pellegrini to rotate goalkeepers|
|Atletico not violent - Simeone|
|No Juve injury crisis - Allegri|