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 By Nicolas Anil

Ken Ilso turns back on S.League to join Kedah in Malaysia

Former S.League star Ken Ilso could be playing in the Malaysia Super League in the 2017 season after linking up with 2016 Malaysia Cup champions, Kedah.

The Danish striker arrived in Kedah on Monday after turning down a contract extension with Home United last month. He's expected to sign with the northern state team after undergoing a medical.

Kedah are also testing Brazilian striker Thiago Quirino to fill in the void left by his namesake Thiago Augusto, and New Zealand World Cup forward Shane Smeltz.

Ilso, dubbed 'King Ken' after scoring 37 goals in 41 matches in two seasons with Home United, will be a strong addition for Kedah.

"We are ready to make a decision on our main striker for the new season," Kedah coach Tan Cheng Hoe told Berita Harian.

"Besides a striker, we are also scouting for an import to fill our Asian slot for the new season."

Former Danish U21 marksman Ilso will be out to continue his impeccable record in the region, helping Home United make the final of the 2015 Singapore Cup.

Apart from making a name for himself in his homeland, Ilso has played in the Bundesliga -- with Fortuna Dusseldorf -- and for four seasons in the Eredivisie.

Ken Ilso, right, scored 37 goals in 41 matches for Home United and played in the 2015 Singapore Cup final.

Ilso almost left Home United at the end of 2015 before returning after contemplating his future in Europe. But his arm couldn't be twisted for a third season with the S.League giants.

Kedah have only have attacking midfielder Liridon Krasniqi, and former striker Sandro for the new season from their potent 2016 arsenal. 

But elsewhere on the park, Tan's ambitious team have retained the majority of their squad from 2016, who did well to finish third in the Malaysia Super League.

Kedah's neighbours Kelantan, meanwhile, will have funds for only three months, according to their former president Tan Sri Annuar Musa.

The Red Warriors will make a decision on the MSL status after an extraordinary general meeting on Thursday.

Like Selangor, the East Coast giants are struggling to pool together funds for the new season after their owner Datuk Seri Hasmizah Othman decided to pull the plug on her two-year sponsorship deal, which began in 2016.

Nicolas Anil is a former Malay Mail and Malaysia editor/writer who appears on BFM Radio as a football analyst. Twitter: @nicolas_anil.



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