The national Olympic football squad will play between 10 to 12 friendly matches in Slovakia as preparation for the SEA Games to be held in Indonesia in November.
The team, which is scheduled to leave on July 23, will be based in Vion in Slovakia.
Deputy Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Razali Ibrahim said the squad would be pitted against Czech Republic and Austrian Olympic teams, and also Slovak First Division League teams.
"This is part of the preparation for the SEA Games and the 2012 London Olympics' qualifying round," he told reporters after opening a workshop on the national football development attended by 70 coaches at the National Sports Complex, Bukit Jalil, Wednesday (29/06/11).
He said although the ministry had yet to approve a budget for the training stint, it had agreed in principle on the proposal from the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM).
On sports development, he said RM1.7 million had been allocated to the Education Ministry for football development in schools.
Of the amount, Datuk Razali said RM800,000 would be spent to hold the Education Ministry League, RM500,000 to purchase sports equipment and RM400,000 to organize a high performance sports carnival.
"Our target is to get 2,600 footballers among school children aged between 11 and 13 to be trained by 1,700 coaches under the football development programme nationwide," he said.