National Team - Lions ● Nov 08, 2017

High-Flying Faris Aims to Finish 2017 on a Positive Note with Singapore


High-Flying Faris Aims to Finish 2017 on a Positive Note with Singapore

Having scored 21 goals and provided 20 assists across all competitions this season, Faris Ramli is determined to finish 2017 on a high against Lebanon and Bahrain.

The Lions take on Lebanon in an ‘A’ international friendly on Thursday evening at the National Stadium, before going up against Bahrain next Tuesday at the same ground in their penultimate Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup Group E qualifier.

Singapore are five points behind second-placed Turkmenistan, and will need big results in the final two matches against Bahrain and Chinese Taipei to stand a chance of qualifying for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.

National Team coach V. Sundram Moorthy has called up a good mixture of experienced and young players, but all eyes will be on Faris to take his club form to the international stage.

“Against Hong Kong and Turkmenistan, he performed well and he is obviously in good form for Home United in the S.League so that is a definite positive for us,” said Coach Sundram.

“But we have to look at the team in general and we have some youngsters coming up the ranks like Ikhsan [Fandi] who has gotten some experience at this level while Hami [Syahin] is another interesting prospect.

“Players like Shannon [Stephen], Anders [Aplin] and Rusyaidi [Salime] are also knocking on the door and they are our future.

“Everything has been great so far in training with the boys working hard and looking forward to the game.

“We’re working on a few tactics and hopefully we can deliver on the pitch.”

Faris, who admits that he is surprised by his own run of form, reckons it will be crucial for the Lions to finish the year on a positive note.

“Actually, this (my form) is above my expectations because last year I was injured and this year was all about getting back on the right path,” Faris said.

“With the National Team, I’ve had to learn to be a striker rather than a winger and this is the first year I’ve changed my role so I’m still learning and adapting, especially taking on the responsibility of not just providing but scoring goals.

“These upcoming games are important for us but you saw how Chinese Taipei overturned the result against Bahrain and like what Coach Sundram said, anything is possible in football.

“Bahrain are coming to our home ground but we have to focus on Friday‚Äôs game against Lebanon first to ensure we are ready for Bahrain.”

The friendly match against Lebanon will kick off at 7.30pm on Thursday 9 November at the National Stadium, and the AFC Asian Cup qualifier against Bahrain will take place next Tuesday 14 November at the same venue. Tickets are available online at, at the Singapore Indoor Stadium box office and SingPost outlets islandwide.