Football: Courtois' mentor Guy Martens appointed FAS consulting goalkeeping coach

Belgian coach Guy Martens has been appointed a consulting goalkeeping coach by FAS until the end of the year.
Belgian coach Guy Martens has been appointed a consulting goalkeeping coach by FAS until the end of the year. PHOTO: FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION OF SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE - Guy Martens, the man credited with developing Chelsea star Thibaut Courtois, has been appointed as a consulting goalkeeping coach by the Football Association of Singapore (FAS).

The 56-year-old Belgian, who left his country's Pro League club KRC Genk in June after almost 25 years, joins on a short-term contract until the end of the year.

Martens said he had intended to take a break from coaching, but changed his mind after being contacted by compatriot Michel Sablon, who is FAS' technical director.

"I could have remained in Europe but I decided to take up this challenge as I strongly believe in the vision and direction of the Singapore federation," Martens noted.

Sablon said: "To have someone of his stature coaching our goalkeepers in Singapore and guiding our goalkeeper coaches would be tremendously beneficial to us. His experience is invaluable and we are delighted to welcome him to Singapore."

FAS president Zainudin Nordin added: "We are pleased to welcome Guy Martens, who will work with Michel to further enhance the training and development of our goalkeepers across various age-group teams.

"Going forward, we will continue to work towards securing the support of our key partners and thereafter bring on board more personnel with a strong track record to further facilitate the progress of local football in all aspects."

Courtois, rated as one of the best goalkeepers in the world, had described his mentor as the "best goalkeeping coach I have ever worked with".

nsanjay@sph.com.sg