Singapore, 12 December 2013: HE’S BACK.
After a number of years coaching in the region and adding more feathers to his cap, including that of an academy director, Fandi Ahmad has returned to take the helm as Head Coach of the reigning Malaysian Super League champions, the LionsXII.
Fandi, who reconvened ties with the Football Association of Singapore when he officially took office in Jalan Besar today, said: “I am very happy to be given a chance to come back and contribute to local football.”
As reported earlier, Fandi is grateful for the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) for the opportunity to build on the success achieved by former coach V. Sundramoorthy.
“I like working with the players here because they are intelligent, physically-stronger and disciplined, although we can work on developing more creativity and individual flair,” said Fandi, who spent time coaching in Indonesia and Malaysia before coming back to be a part of the local football fabric once more.
Fandi, who has signed a 3-year contract with an option to extend for another 2 years, cited local fans’ continued support as one of many significant factors that swayed his decision to take up the LionsXII post.
He said: “While I wanted to stabilise my family’s situation in Singapore for my children to benefit from having their education here, I knew I couldn’t disappoint the fans who have been behind me since my days as a player.”
With a significant number of players involved at the ongoing Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Myanmar, Fandi noted he intends to guide the LionsXII to develop an end product to their play.
“We need players who can create and commit themselves to take responsibility on the pitch. I like players who can do something special in games. When they beat players or play the penetrative pass, they open up the play for others in the team,” said the captain of the 1994 Malaysia Cup-winning team.
Looking ahead to the 2014 Malaysian Super League campaign, Fandi is also counting on support from local football fans to galvanise the team, as they look to embody his attacking philosophy.
He said: “I would really like to thank the fans for all their support and I hope they will continue to get behind us, be it win, lose or draw, as we try to rebuild and guide this new and young team.”
“We will ensure the team puts in 100% effort on and off the pitch, but when the team steps onto the field, we will always look to entertain. I believe the best form of defence is to attack,” said Fandi, hinting at a sign of things to come.
Fandi had also noted the good progress FAS has achieved since embarking on the implementation of the FAS Strategic Plan. As reported earlier, he looks forward to being part of the team and work with his colleagues and the senior management to uphold the professional standards, and continue the good work aimed at bringing Singapore football to the next level.