FAS ● Apr 20, 2023
FAS President’s Hari Raya Aidilfitri 2023 Message
20 April 2023
Dear members of the FAS football fraternity,
The week of Eid al-Fitr has arrived, and I am sure many of you are looking forward to connecting with your families and friends over delicious platters of traditional kueh, ketupat, rendang and other celebratory dishes. Festive celebrations back in full swing – as seen in various locations all over the island lined with a variety of vibrant Hari Raya décor, the sight of families preparing new outfits for upcoming Eid visits and excited chatter over the upcoming merriments.
The mood is no different here back in FAS despite the hectic month of March that we just had. The FIFA International Window took place during the month of Ramadan and saw our Men’s A team in action, playing two away friendlies in Hong Kong and Macau while the Men’s Under-22 were involved in the Merlion Cup 2023. Our senior Women’s Team was also involved in the 2024 Summer Olympic qualifiers against Thailand and Mongolia. I am grateful for all the hard work and commitment from all our coaches and players, as well as fellow members of the FAS staff, especially so for our Muslim colleagues, who have continued to perform at such a high pace during Ramadan.
With the Singapore Premier League and the Women’s Premier League already in full swing, the Singapore Football League 1 will also begin next week. The games will continue to come thick and fast.
While many families are gearing up for the Eid festivities, our national teams will once again prepare to head for international duty. Our Women’s U16 National Team will be taking part in the first round of qualifying for the Asian Football Confederation U17 Women’s Asian Cup™ Indonesia 2024 in the first week of Eid. I am optimistic for the girls as they are going into this tournament on the back of a fourth placing in the recently concluded JENESYS tournament in Japan. Singapore will be hosting Turkmenistan and Bangladesh for these qualifiers, so I invite you to come down to the Jalan Besar Stadium on the 28th and 30th of April to show our teenage Lionesses some much needed support.
Our Women’s and Men’s U22 National Teams will be flying off to Cambodia to represent Singapore at the 32nd SEA Games beginning from 30th April onwards. This will be the Lionesses’ second run at the SEA Games, having made a milestone moment in their debut appearance last year with their first win in 37 years. They will also be under a new Head Coach with Moroccan Karim Bencherifa at the helm. We look forward to a good showing.
Our men’s U22 team however face a daunting task having been drawn in a group with regional powerhouses Vietnam, Thailand and our Causeway rivals Malaysia, with us and Laos, making up the rest of the group. I have told our boys to focus not so much of getting a result, but on showing a consistent performance across all four games – performances worthy of a Singapore team. I want them to show the fight, the courage and self-belief. If we do so, anything can happen. Football has shown that when facing stronger teams, if teams are compact, organised and disciplined, it is possible to attain amazing results. I ask all of you to give your utmost support for our SEA Games squads, who have sacrificed greatly and worked tirelessly to fly our Singapore flag high.
There is never a dull period in football!
On behalf of my fellow FAS Council Members and also the FAS staff, I wish you and your loved ones a blessed Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri!