Football: U-23s begin SEA Games countdown

Football: U-23s begin SEA Games countdown
Coach Aide Iskandar.

There were balls all over the pitch, cones arranged in a straight line and a cooler filled with an isotonic beverage on the side, but there were no footballers in sight at the Geylang Field last night.

The Singapore Under-23 team were scheduled to kick off their South-east Asia (SEA) Games preparations at 7pm, but for 30 minutes, the squad of 25 were in the container that acts as a makeshift meeting room, together with coaches Bernd Stange and Aide Iskandar.

Speaking to The New Paper later, Stange explained: "We started with an emotional meeting.

"We analysed what had happened over the past few weeks and why we lost to Syria (in Singapore's Asian Cup qualifier in Teheran last Friday).

"Even Aide gave the boys a long speech on what they can achieve at the SEA Games."

There was a call for discipline and the need to show the right attitude.

The meeting was also used to rally the players and motivate them to go for the jugular.

Then, it was time to get down to the on-field drills.

Singapore have been drawn in Group A at the 2013 SEA Games in Myanmar and the team begin next month's campaign on Dec 8 against Laos in Naypyidaw.

The target is to reach the final of the U-23 competition.

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