Football: Still no green light for Velez

Football: Still no green light for Velez
V Kanan (in blue), stand-in coach for Geylang International, speaks to his players during a training session.

SINGAPORE - Their senior side have had a wretched start to this year's Great Eastern-Yeo's S.League, losing both their games.

Geylang International's Prime League team are also struggling to find their feet, both on and off the pitch, and it was no surprise they fell 5-1 to the National Football Academy Under-17 side at Jurong West Stadium on Monday night.

The club's Prime League (Under-21 side) coach, Argentinian Nazareno Velez, is still awaiting ratification for his coaching licences from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and has yet to be cleared to take charge of the team.

The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) confirmed on Monday that clearance had still not arrived.


Velez led the pre-match warm-up on Monday, as the club's S.League coach, V Kanan - the designated stand-in - arrived just three minutes before kick-off with the goalkeeper-coach due to training commitments with the senior team.

The Geylang youngsters took the lead last night, but were undone by a lack of fitness and discipline, conceding five goals in a second half that also saw two players sent off.

While Kanan's name was on the official team-sheet as the head coach of the Prime League side, it was Velez who was barking instructions from the touchline.

Geylang had lost their first Prime League game 5-1 to Tampines Rovers last week, with only one player - a goalkeeper - on the bench.

The personnel situation improved last night with four players on the bench, but Velez was not pleased.

"We did good in the first half, but in the second, the players were tired. This is because we've only had 10 days of training," he told The New Paper. "There are some problems in our organisation, and we must fix them."

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