Football: New Thai Premier League rule requires one Asean player per team

SINGAPORE - Football clubs in the Thai Premier League (TPL) voted last week to add a new rule which could pave the way for more opportunities for top Singapore players to play in the league.

The Thai Football Association announced that all TPL and Division 1 clubs will be allowed to register up to five non-Thai players - three foreign players, one Asian player and one Asean player - from next year.

Currently, the clubs are allowed to register five foreign players in their squad, of which at least one must be a player from an Asian country.

This could lead to top Asean footballers being picked by the TPL clubs to fill their Asean-player quota.

Singapore has one player - national goalkeeper Hassan Sunny - plying his trade in the TPL with Army United.

He believes that while this new rule will encourage more Singaporeans to ply their trade in the TPL, there are not many S-League players who are on the wanted lists of the Thai clubs.

"It's a good ruling for Asean as a whole but it might not be that beneficial for Singaporeans," he said.

"The Thai league is (considered) the best in the region at the moment and the other countries (outside Singapore) have strong players. But this new ruling is a great opportunity for Singapore's players to impress and perform well."