Brendan ‘Gan-ning’ for silverware, return to national team

Brendan Gan’s positive attitude is one of the reasons why he managed to beat testicular cancer.

The 33-year-old Selangor captain was diagnosed with the disease last July. One diagnosis gave him six months to live.

But here he is today, looking fit as a fiddle and planning on a return, not just to the state team, but to Harimau Malaya as well.

“It is difficult to say when I will be back on the field. I am still undergoing tests and whatnot,” said Gan.

“I am enjoying the time with my family as I slowly get back to full fitness,” added the father of one.

“Once you are diagnosed with cancer, you are more aware of the minutes you have, how much time you have for the family, and what time you have left to do the things you love.”

Gan said the whole thing was a harrowing experience, but he prefers to look at the positives.

“I won’t say it has been all bad. The experience gave me the strength to face the future.

“I have been battling every day to pursue what I love – playing football,” said Gan, who won the 2018 Malaysia Cup with Perak.

“I am back training with Selangor and cannot wait to get back into the team. It is not easy regaining my fitness. I have to keep working hard.”

The midfielder said the goal was to get back into the Selangor side and lead the team to silverware.

And from there, a return to the national team.

“I am taking it one day at a time. The first goal is to get back into the Selangor team,” said the West Ham fan.

“I keep telling the boys, do well for Selangor, and then they will be noticed by those in the national team. So, the priority is to help Selangor get back to its winning ways.”

It will not be easy as Selangor is fifth in the Super League table, with eight points after five matches. It suffered its first defeat of the season two weeks, going down 2-0 to Terengganu, but bounced back to beat Pahang in its last match.

Gan said the players need to minimise mistakes during matches, and be more disciplined on, and off the field.

Asked about new Malaysian coach Kim Pan Gon, Gan, who last played for Malaysia in June 2021, said he hoped the South Korean could help revitalise, and reverse the national team’s fortunes.

Malaysia is placed 154th in the latest Fifa ranking.