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"Abang" Taking Charge in November

Fandi Ahmad will take charge of the Suzuki Cup campaign
It was a mere formality when the earlier press conference was called to announce Young Lions coach Fandi Ahmad as the man in charge of the Singapore National Team for the upcoming AFF Suzuki Cup campaign in November.

This hastily-arranged media gathering more or less confirmed a Straits Times' report that appeared days ago which suggested the former Singapore skipper “will hold the fort for the national team while the search continues for the coach who will lead the Lions on a permanent basis”.

So when the panel that comprised Messrs Lim Kia Tong (FAS president), Edwin Tong (FAS vice-president), Yazeen Buhari (FAS Acting General Secretary) and Fandi, himself, took their seats before the start of the event, the awaiting media at the venue already knew what was on the agenda.

Fandi speaking to the media after the presser
“I am really exciting of the new Suzuki Cup format,” said the one-time FC Groningen striker on the new format that will have the participating teams of the biennial tournament being divided into two groups of five and play a round robin system with each team playing two home and two away fixtures at the group stages.

As the result, the four-time Asean champions are being scheduled two Group B home fixtures under this new format – against Indonesia on the 9th of November before taking on the winning team of the qualification play-off (either Brunei and Timor Leste) on the 21st of November.

When asked by a member of the press who would be assisting him for the Suzuki Cup campaign, the 56-year-old tactician revealed former national players like S Subramani and Noh Alam Shah are among those shortlisted.

Noh Alam Shah (file snap)
“I am truly honoured to be called upon by the legend of Singapore football to assist him in whatever way I can,” said Alam Shah in his text reply when told his name was one of those mentioned by Fandi.

“Representing the country as a player or an official doesn't make any difference, it is still something proud for me or for any other individual (to do so).

“The Lions may not be doing well at this moment but everything has an end, I truly believe the bad streak will end with Fandi's introduction as the coach (for this Suzuki Cup tournament).”

“On my part, I will try my best to motivate everyone in camp to do their best in every match and make the players understand what is the flag on their chest means when they don the jersey for a match.” added the former Tampines Rovers marksman.


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