National Team - Lions ● Feb 01, 2024
Tsutomu Ogura takes over reins of Singapore National Team
SINGAPORE, 1 FEBRUARY 2024 – The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) today announced the appointment of Tsutomu Ogura as the new Director (National “A” & Under-22 Teams). A 57-year-old Japanese coaching veteran, Ogura brings a wealth of experience to the role, with significant coaching experience at various clubs and notable achievements as part of the Japan Football Association.
In a strategic move aligned with the Post SEA Games Football Review 2023 recommendations, Ogura will lead the Men’s Senior Team while also overseeing the performances of the Under-23/22 team and its coach. This organizational shift underscores FAS’s commitment to the holistic development of football in Singapore, ensuring seamless coordination and synergy between the Men’s Senior and Under-23/22 squads.
FAS president, Mr Bernard Tan presented a customised jersey to Coach Ogura, February 2024.
” I am pleased that we were able to convince someone of Coach Ogura’s calibre to undertake the challenging role of Singapore’s National Team head coach. Ogura has had a very diverse career in football, which will no doubt be helpful not just in helping improve our senior national team, but also the entire football ecosystem. He might not be as well known to local fans as some of the other candidates that we had spoken to, but I am confident that he will soon win over both the players and the fans, as well as the larger footballing fraternity,” said Mr Bernard Tan, FAS President.
Ogura’s coaching journey began at JEF United Ichihara in 1996, where he first honed his coaching skills. His coaching acumen was further demonstrated during his tenure with various levels of the Japan National Team from 2006 to 2012, playing an integral role in shaping the team during this period. In 2010, Ogura was part of the coaching staff during the Guangzhou Asian Games Championship and the FIFA World Cup in South Africa, where Japan reached the Round of 16.
Coach Ogura in the press conference, February 2024.
Notably, Ogura served as Second Head Coach for Japan’s Olympic National Team from 2010 to 2012, contributing to their commendable fourth-place finish in the 2012 London Olympics. Subsequently, he continued his football career with stints with Omiya Ardija, Ventforet Kofu, JEF United Chiba, and Yokohama F. Marinos.
It was with Yokohama in 2019 that Ogura achieved one of his biggest club achievements, where he oversaw the club’s first J1 league title in 15 years as its Sporting Director. He would go on to enjoy similar success as the Second Head Coach of Tokyo Verdy from 2022 to 2024, guiding the team to a promotion to the J1 league for the first time in 15 years. His impressive track record at both domestic and international levels reflects his commitment to excellence and player development.
Ogura will begin preparations for Singapore’s next two games of the second round of qualification for the FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup Saudi Arabia 2027 against China, in March. Drawn in Group C, the Lions had earlier faced Korea Republic in Seoul and Thailand at the Singapore National Stadium during the first two games of the qualifying round.
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