Mohd Safiq Rahim
Safiq with Malaysia national team in 2011
|Full name||Mohd Safiq Bin Rahim|
|Date of birth||5 July 1987|
|Place of birth||Kuala Selangor, Selangor, Malaysia|
|Height||1.67 m (5 ft 6 in)|
|Johor Darul Ta'zim|
|2003–2004||Bukit Jalil Sports School|
|2013–||Johor Darul Ta'zim||94||(22)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 23:58, 28 October 2017 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 21:58, 22 March 2018 (UTC)
Mohd Safiq Bin Rahim (born 5 July 1987) is a Malaysian professional footballer who plays for and captains both Johor Darul Ta'zim and the Malaysia national team. Primarily an attacking midfielder, he can also play as a central midfielder, usually deployed as a deep-lying playmaker. Safiq is considered the best midfielder of his generation.
Born in Kuala Selangor, Safiq is the oldest child to Rahim Muhd. Yatim and Aidah Majid. He has a sister, Safiqa. Safiq began his football career at Bukit Jalil Sports School where he has been studying there from 2003 to 2007. In 2006, Safiq started playing for his hometown club's youth team. While representing the youth side, he has helped his side to win the 2008 Malaysia President Cup 1–0 over Perak youth in the final. He has scored the winning goal in the match.
He continued his development in Selangor before being promoted to the first team in 2007. Safiq signed a contract with KL PLUS in 2009 after not getting a spot in the starting line-up while playing for Selangor. After a season playing for KL PLUS, Safiq returned to Selangor at the end of 2009 season. Safiq has won the FAM Football Awards for the Best Midfielder Award four times, in 2011, 2012, 2015 and 2016. He also has won the FAM Most Valuable Players Award in 2015.
On 1 November 2012, Safiq has confirmed his transfer to Johor Darul Ta'zim. He officially signed a one-year contract with an option for another year after his contract with Selangor effectively expired on 30 November 2012. On 13 April 2015, it was reported that Safiq was among the highest paid local player which monthly salary RM 70,000 (around US$ 17,000).
On 27 January 2015, FIFA.com has published an article about his expertise in taking a free kick after skippering his side to a runners-up finish in 2014 AFF Suzuki Cup. Safiq who also the top-scorer during the tournament has scored 5 goals from set pieces.
Safiq played an integral role in his 2015 season at Johor Darul Ta'zim, helping the club to win the Malaysia Charity Shield, Malaysia Super League and AFC Cup. On 31 October 2013, Safiq has been named as the 2015 AFC Cup’s Most Valuable Player lauded his Johor Darul Ta’zim teammates after the club became the first from Malaysia to claim a continental title.
Safiq made his debut for Malaysia against Myanmar in January 2007 at age 20. He has since participated in every major tournament that Malaysia have qualified for, including the 2010, the 2012 and the 2014 AFF Championship. He scored his first international senior goal in an unofficial friendly match against Zimbabwe on 12 July 2009.
- 1 Club career
- 2 International career
- 3 Personal life
- 4 Career statistics
- 5 Honours
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Youth and Selangor
Mohd Safiq Bin Rahim was born and raised in Kuala Selangor approximately 43 kilometres from Shah Alam, the capital of Selangor. His passion towards football began since he was a kid. At first, his parents was not approved him to be a professional footballer as they wanted him to focus on the academics. As the result, he entered Bukit Jalil Sports School to further his studies. However, it all started when Safiq was absorbed into the squad of Selangor youth in 2006. In 2008, during Malaysia President Cup final, he has scored the winning goal against Perak as the result Selangor won by 1–0. After showing promise with the youth side, Safiq has been promoted to the Selangor senior team in 2007. However, he having a hard time to secure a place in the line up under coach Dollah Salleh.
On 19 September 2008, Safiq signed a contract with newly promoted club KL PLUS after he turned down the Football Association of Selangor’s offer to extend his contract. He was appointed as the team vice-captain while Norhafiz Zamani as the team captain. At the end of 2009 season, Safiq left KL PLUS and returned to Selangor.
Return to Selangor
On 1 December 2009, it was announced that Safiq signed with Selangor for a second stint from KL PLUS. He was handed the number 8 jersey ahead of the 2010 season. Safiq made his season debut for Selangor in a 1–2 win over Negeri Sembilan in the Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Cup at Tuanku Abdul Rahman Stadium. On 19 January 2010, he scored his first goal for Selangor in a 4–0 win over Pahang. On 23 February 2010, Safiq made his AFC Cup debut in 0–0 draw against Vietnamese Becamex Bình Dương at Shah Alam Stadium. He scored his first AFC Cup goal in a 5–0 win over Maldivian Victory SC on 6 April 2010. Safiq has scored 9 goals in all competitions during his season debut. He was part of the Selangor team that won the 2010 Super League Malaysia and the 2010 Malaysia Charity Shield.
In 2011 season, Safiq his season first appearance in a 0–2 defeat to Kelantan in a Malaysia Charity Shield match on 29 January 2011. Safiq played as a starter before been substitute off with Fitri Shazwan at 46th minute of match. Safiq scored his first goal of the season on 12 March 2011, in away match against Negeri Sembilan. The match ended in a 2–1 victory for Selangor. He added his second goal of the season on 16 April 2011 against Perak in 1–0 home win. Overall Safiq has scored 11 goals in all 2011 season competitions and made 26 league appearances with 23 times as a starter.
On August 2011 after the 2011 Malaysia Cup campaign ended, Safiq was given a three-week trial from the Welsh club, Cardiff City with the help from the Cardiff owner, Chan Tien Ghee who are also a Malaysian, along with fellow Malaysian Safee Sali. Safiq officially underwent his three-week trial began on 24 November 2011 and ended on 11 December 2011.
On 24 October 2011, Safiq has rejected to undergo a trial with Indonesian, Arema-Pelita club.
For 2012 season, Safiq scored his first goal of the season in his season debut match in 2–2 draw against Negeri Sembilan on 10 January 2012 at Tuanku Abdul Rahman Stadium in Paroi. He continued his good form with the winning goal in a 1–0 win over Perak the following week. On 18 February 2012, Safiq scored twice in a 0–4 win over Shahzan Muda for the FA Cup match in Temerloh Mini Stadium. On 25 August 2012, Safiq scored the first goal in a 2–2 draw against Pahang for the Malaysia Cup group stage match. Three days later, in the Malaysia Cup campaign, Safiq scored a winning goal through a penalty kick in the 80th minute of the match. As Selangor advanced to the quarter-finals of the Malaysia Cup, Safiq another goal came in 1–3 win over Johor FC on 25 September 2012 in the first leg. Safiq concluded his 2012 season with 10 goals in all competitions.
Johor Darul Ta'zim
After his contract with Selangor expired on 30 November 2012, Safiq was set to join Johor Darul Ta'zim for the 2013 season. On 1 December 2013, he signed a one-year contract with an option for another year with the club.
Safiq made his debut and scored in the opening match of 2013 Malaysia Super League against Pahang. In 2015, he was named club captain, and was part of the squad that won the 2015 AFC Cup. He captained the side for the final, playing the full 90 minutes and being voted man of the match in a 1–0 victory against FC Istiklol at Pamir Stadium.
On 14 December 2015, Safiq signed a new four-year contract with Johor Darul Ta'zim until 2019.
Safiq started his international career with Malaysia U-20 team at aged 17 under K. Rajagobal. He has participated in 2004 AFC Youth Championship which Malaysia has lost 0–3 to China PR in the quarterfinal. Safiq also was part of the team which qualified for the 2006 AFC Youth Championship in India which they were finished at the bottom place of the group stage.
Safiq has represented Malaysia since 2005. He earned his first full international cap against Myanmar in the 2007 ASEAN Football Championship. Since then he only made appearances with the under-23 national team. He scored his first international senior goal in an unofficial friendly match against Zimbabwe on 12 July 2009.
Safiq scored twice from a free kick in a friendly against Singapore on 8 and 12 June 2012 consecutively. On 16 October 2012, he scored another goal, again from a free kick in a 3–0 win over Hong Kong.
On 12 July 2016, Safiq announced his retirement from international football via his football club's website and Facebook page. He retired from national team alongside fellow club teammate, Aidil Zafuan.
On 29 March 2017, Safiq announced to come back from retirement after club owner Johor Darul Ta'zim FC became the new president of FAM and also to contribute his experience and skill he gathered from his club for his lovely national team. Once he made a comeback, his National team became more spirit with a short pass (tiki taka) playing style.
2010 AFF Championship
Safiq was selected by Malaysia to captain the Malaysian team in the 2010 AFF Championship co-hosted by Indonesia and Vietnam. Safiq made all 7 appearances throughout the tournament. It was the first time in history that Malaysia won the AFF Championship title.
2012 AFF Championship
Safiq made his first 2012 AFF Championship in a 0–3 defeat to Singapore in their group stage first match on 25 November 2012. On 28 November 2012, Safiq scored the opening goal with a free kick in 1–4 win over Laos.
2014 AFF Championship
On 19 November 2014, Safiq was named in the Malaysia squad for the 2014 AFF Championship. On 26 November 2014, Safiq scored one goal in a 2–3 defeat to Thailand. He scored the match first goal in the 28th minute before Adisak Kraisorn made an equaliser 2 minutes before the half time.
In the final group stage match against Singapore, Safiq's combative display and enterprise shone through and he was statistically the player with the most passes and touches on the ball. His best trait though is not in his cultured right foot, but in his mind, when he calmly converted the penalty in the Lion's den amidst the jeers and mocking by the partisan crowd helping Malaysia to progress to knockout stage.
In the first leg semi final match against Vietnam, Safiq converted another penalty but Malaysia lost 1–2. In the second leg, Safiq scored the opening goal after Malaysia received a penalty kick in the 4th minutes. In the second leg of the 2014 AFF Championship final, Safiq scored another penalty in the 7th minutes. He then scored his sixth goal of the tournament, a free kick but two late goals from Thailand resulted in Malaysia losing 3–4 on aggregate. With his 6-goal haul, Safiq became the first midfielder in the tournament's 18-year history to have picked up the Golden Boot award.
On 13 and 16 July 2011, Safiq captained the Malaysia XI in their matches against Arsenal and Liverpool. Malaysia XI lost 0–4 against Arsenal. Just before the stroke of half time against Liverpool, with Malaysia trailing 0–1, Safiq scored from a free-kick to equalise for Malaysia. Despite a spirited comeback, Malaysia XI went on to lose 3–6 i to Liverpool.
|Selangor||2007–08||Malaysia Super League||0||0||0||0||0||0||—||0||0|
|PLUS||2009||Malaysia Super League||0||1||0||0||0||0||—||0||0|
|Selangor||2010||Malaysia Super League||26||7||0||0||0||1||6||1||0||9|
|2011||Malaysia Super League||26||7||0||0||0||4||—||0||11|
|2012||Malaysia Super League||11||5||1||2||0||3||—||0||10|
|Johor Darul Ta'zim||2013||Malaysia Super League||15||1||0||0||0||2||—||0||3|
|2014||Malaysia Super League||18||1||0||0||0||4||—||0||5|
|2015||Malaysia Super League||22||7||0||0||6||4||11||4||39||15|
|2016||Malaysia Super League||17||4||7||2||?||1||?||8||?||15|
|2017||Malaysia Super League||21||9||4||0||7||2||9||4||41||15|
- As of 22 March 2018
- As of match played 13 November 2017. Malaysia score listed first, score column indicates score after each Safiq goal.
|1.||12 July 2009||KLFA Stadium, Cheras, Malaysia||Zimbabwe||1–0||4–0||Friendly|
|2.||30 December 2009||KLFA Stadium, Cheras, Malaysia||Syria||1–0||4–1||Friendly|
|4.||9 February 2011||Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia||Hong Kong||1–0||2–0||Friendly|
|5.||29 June 2011||Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Malaysia||Chinese Taipei||1–0||2–1||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|6.||3 July 2011||Taipei Municipal Stadium, Taipei, Taiwan||Chinese Taipei||2–1||2–3||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|7.||13 November 2011||Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, Guwahati, India||India||1–0||1–1||Friendly|
|8.||8 June 2012||Jalan Besar Stadium, Kallang, Singapore||Singapore||2–0||2–2||Friendly|
|9.||12 June 2012||Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia||Singapore||2–0||2–0||Friendly|
|10.||16 October 2012||Mong Kok Stadium, Mong Kok, Hong Kong||Hong Kong||2–0||3–0||Friendly|
|11.||28 November 2012||Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Malaysia||Laos||1–0||4–1||2012 AFF Suzuki Cup|
|12.||17 March 2013||Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia||Saudi Arabia||1–2||1–4||Friendly|
|13.||9 October 2013||Shenzhen Universiade Sports Centre, China||United Arab Emirates||1–3||1–3||Friendly|
|14.||26 November 2014||Jalan Besar Stadium, Kallang, Singapore||Thailand||2–1||2–3||2014 AFF Suzuki Cup|
|15.||29 November 2014||National Stadium, Kallang, Singapore||Singapore||2–1||3–1||2014 AFF Suzuki Cup|
|16.||7 December 2014||Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia||Vietnam||1–0||1–2||2014 AFF Suzuki Cup|
|17.||11 December 2014||Mỹ Đình National Stadium, Hanoi, Vietnam||Vietnam||2–1||4–2||2014 AFF Suzuki Cup|
|18.||20 December 2014||Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Malaysia||Thailand||1–0||3–2||2014 AFF Suzuki Cup|
|20.||3 September 2015||Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia||Saudi Arabia||1–0||1–2||2018 FIFA World Cup qualification|
- Johor Darul Ta'zim
- Malaysia Super League: 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
- Malaysia FA Cup: 2016; Runner-up: 2013
- Malaysia Charity Shield: 2015, 2016, 2018
- AFC Cup: 2015
- Malaysia Cup: 2017
- Malaysia U-23
- National Football Awards–Best Midfielder: 2011, 2012, 2015, 2016
- National Football Awards–Most Valuable Players: 2015
- AFF Best XI (2012 AFF Championship): 2012
- Malaysia Cup Final Best Player: 2014
- AFC Cup Most Valuable Player: 2015
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