A new beginning for our Young Lions

It is a new year and a new beginning for our Young Lions.

Last year was a very bad one for them. The news related to them - from the governing body Football Association of Singapore down to news about the coaches and players - were mostly negative.

During the era of the late Choo Seng Quee, Quah Kim Song and Mohd Nor, the Singapore team played to capacity crowds at the National Stadium, and the Lion's Roar was generated from those games.

It was sheer delight to watch them play with gusto and true determination.

But today, few football supporters are prepared to spend their money and time to watch a team that is unable to score, and whose members are soft, complacent and do not have the fighting spirit and mentality to play to win.

The better players who are quite senior and experienced have joined other clubs, notably the Malaysian states, Indonesia and even Thailand.

Now, Fandi Ahmad has been put in charge of preparing the Young Lions for the 2018 Asian Games and the 2019 SEA Games.

He will also be in charge of them for this year's S-League season.

The team of young players will have to do battle with all the better teams around the region.

It will be an uphill task.

Whether Fandi is able to accomplish what he sets out to do remains to be seen.

Nevertheless, I really hope that this year will be a better year for the Young Lions.

Neo Poh Goon

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 03, 2018, with the headline 'A new beginning for our Young Lions'. Print Edition | Subscribe