Melbourne City FC signs Singapore Lions defender Safuwan

Melbourne City Football Club has announced that it signed Singaporean Lions defender Safuwan Baharudin for the remainder of the Hyundai A-League 2014/15 season.

According to a report on its website, Safuwan, 23, recently attended the club's training camp in Abu Dhabi from Jan 10 to 19. It is part of a development opportunity by the Football Association of Singapore.

Safuwan impressed as centre back and fullback during the two friendly matches, where he performed well against Montenegro international and former Juventus striker Mirko Vucinic. He also featured as a substitute in the side's 1-1 draw with Ukrainian Premier League outfit FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk.

Melbourne City FC Head Coach John van't Schip said the versatile defender would provide his squad with further depth in defence in the second half of the season.

"Safuwan is a mobile defender who is calm and composed on the ball and makes quick and good decisions," van't Schip said.

"He impressed the coaching staff while playing and training with us in Abu Dhabi and we believe he will fit in with our players and complement our style."

Safuwan, who is the reigning Straits Times Athlete of the Year, said he was delighted to be joining Melbourne City for the rest of the current A-League season.

He was quoted by Melbourne City FC as saying: "When this opportunity came, I told myself that I had to go all out because this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that may never come again." 

"I worked very hard, and I really enjoyed training with the team in Abu Dhabi and got along well with the other players. I am very happy that the coaches were happy with what they saw.

"I am looking forward to doing my best for the Club and as an ambassador of Singapore. I want to make my parents and family proud of me."

Safuwan fills Melbourne City FC's final vacant and fifth foreign position, with Jonatan Germano, Damien Duff, Robert Koren and Rob Wielaert occupying the other spots.