SINGAPORE (16 May 2018) – The FA of Singapore (FAS) have announced that Fandi Ahmad will lead the National Team for the 2018 ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup 2018.
FAS will concurrently continue in its search for the National Team Head Coach.
Fandi remains as the Young Lions Head Coach in the Great Eastern-Hyundai Singapore Premier League and continues to lead the Under-23 project, as well as next year’s Southeast Asian (SEA) Games and the 2020 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Under-23 Championship qualification.
Upon the conclusion of the AFF Suzuki Cup, Fandi will continue to work closely with the new National Team Head Coach to ensure continuity in the development pipeline from the Under-23s to the National Team.
The next National Team Head Coach will be appointed with a view to build the National Team from the youth level, to ensure that there is a structure in place that encompasses player development and a congruent style of play that will build Singapore’s competitiveness in international tournaments in the long-run.
FAS President Lim Kia Tong said: “The FAS Council has a long-term vision and plan for the National Team. We do not want to hurry the appointment of the coach because we want the next National Team Coach to be able to bring the National Team to the level we so desire.
“Our appreciation to Fandi for stepping up to lead the National Team for the AFF Suzuki Cup in this crucial period. He will get all the support that he needs to prepare the Lions towards the year-end tournament.”
Fandi Ahmad said at the press conference: “It’s all about pride and passion (when you represent Singapore). If selected, the players need to have fire and desire (to wear the jersey).
“Heart is very important for me. We have not been doing well in the last few years, I am not sure why. But I know how to motivate them (the team).”
He added: “While the Under-23 National Team remains a crucial project for me, the AFF Suzuki Cup is also a significant tournament for Singapore. Hence, I have decided to take up the responsibility of leading the Lions for the tournament. We have been drawn in a tough group but I believe that the players we have are eager to fight.
“Yes, most of our neighbouring countries have passed us in recent years but this is the time where the players must wake up and the fans must come.
“The Lion is there but without the roar, there is no Lion. I strongly believe we have a fighting chance.
“With two of our games played at home, I also am looking forward to the support from our Home fans to spur the Lions on starting with the match against Indonesia on 9 November 2018.”
Singapore are drawn in Group B in the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup and will face Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines and the winner of the qualification round. The Lions will play the first match at home against Indonesia on 9 November 2018. – www.fas.org.sg