|Full name||Persatuan Sepak Bola Malang|
The Blue Thunder
The Two Lions
|Founded||20 June 1953|
Malang, East Java, Indonesia
|2011–12||Indonesian Premier League, 8th|
Persema, an acronym for Persatuan Sepak Bola Malang is an Indonesian football club based in Malang, East Java. They play in Nusantara League. In the Indonesian media, the tautology Persema Malang is often used.
The club was officially established in 1953, with primary funding from Malang's municipal budget. It was part of the Indonesian Super League until January 2011 when they hosted LPI's inaugural match and stopped relying on public funds. The other local team, Arema Malang, is one of the most successful clubs in ISL. The team's nickname is "Laskar Ken Arok" while its home stadium is Gajayana Stadium.
Persema has never won a trophy during its years in the Indonesian Super League, mostly dwelling in the mid to bottom part of the table. The team was relegated into Indonesia's Division One (third-tier) in 2003. However, after two seasons, Persema bounced back to the second-tier league. Persema eventually gained promotion to the ISL in 2008 and stayed there until its 2011 shift to LPI.
Persema is now popular as the club that first hired European-born naturalized players Irfan Bachdim and Kim Jeffrey Kurniawan whose nominations to the Indonesian under-23 national football team in 2011 were cancelled by the Indonesian Football Association because they chose to play in the breakaway league. Its coach Timo Scheunemann is a German who was born and bred in Indonesia and has become a father figure in Indonesia for Bachdim and Kurniawan. His ability to speak Indonesian and Javanese makes him popular among local journalists.
Yuda Agus Hermawan
- "Klasemen: 2011/12". Indonesian Premier League. Retrieved 15 September 2013.