Fandi wants in

Fandi Ahmad reiterated on Tuesday that he wants to be the LionsXII head coach next season.

But he told The New Paper that he had not met officials or council members from the Football Association of Singapore (FAS).

After two seasons guiding the LionsXII, V Sundramoorthy announced his resignation as team coach on Monday.

In their statement the same day, the FAS revealed it will put out a recruitment advertisement for the vacant LionsXII coaching position, after which shortlisted candidates will be interviewed by a panel.

"This is the proper process by which we recruit people into the organisation," said an FAS spokesman.

"We are an organisation that receives public funding and as such, there has to be transparency, accountability and due process in whatever we do."

The Straits Times reported on Tuesday that Fandi was due to meet FAS Council members "over the next few days to work out a deal".

But the Singapore football legend said on Tuesday he will make his move only when the advertisement comes out.

Right now, Fandi, who is linked to Malaysian Super League (MSL) sides Pahang and PKNS FC, would only say: "I'm looking at my options.

"There are offers from Malaysia but I feel it's time to stay in Singapore and I'm seriously considering applying for the LionsXII job. However, I have not been in touch with the FAS."

It is understood that the FAS will run the advertisement by this weekend, and the appointment will be made next month.

It is also believed that the football association is leaning towards hiring a local coach with adequate credentials.

Fandi would have no problems fitting the bill as he holds the AFC professional diploma coaching licence, has international experience and guided SAFFC to two S-League titles.

The coach who takes over the reins of the LionsXII will have big shoes to fill. Sundram guided the team to second place in the MSL in their rookie season last year, when they also reached the Malaysia Cup semi-finals.


Having lost a host of senior internationals for this year's campaign, Sundram led a team made up of just five players over the age of 23 to the MSL title - the first for a Singapore side since the 1994 double triumph of the "Dream Team" - and the last eight of the Malaysia Cup.

Fandi, though, has stuck by what he said in an exclusive interview with TNP last week, when he said he is up to the challenge.

However, a potential stumbling block could be his salary demands. But a source told TNP: "FAS was already willing to pay Fandi a good salary earlier, but he chose to sign for Johor FA (at the beginning of 2012).

"Now, it looks like Fandi is keen to stay in Singapore and help. So, if both parties communicate, there's a good chance Fandi could be back.

"That's a big plus for Singapore football because he has proven to be a good local coach."

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