Newly appointed Singapore head coach Takayuki Nishigaya has called on his chargers “to play collectively as one unit, one team” ahead of next month’s AFC Asian Cup qualifiers.

This follows the announcement of the squad of 27 players that will carry the challenge for Singapore in the AFC Asian Cup™ 2023 qualifiers Final Round where they have been placed in Group F against Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Myanmar.

“While I want to showcase the abilities of the players to their full potential when we go forward, we have to play collectively as one unit, one team, be it with or without the ball,” said Nishigaya.

“Coach Tatsuma Yoshida has previously laid down good foundations and we have to build on those, while also implementing my own philosophy. We should aim to be more aggressive in pressing when we do not have the ball.”

Prior to the qualifiers in Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan, the Singapore side will take on Kuwait in an international ‘A’ friendly on 1 June 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

“I am excited for my first game in charge against Kuwait and while a positive result is always welcomed, we need to be able to achieve our preparatory objectives just as much. I will use the match to experiment with some new ideas that we would have put in the training sessions prior, and after that, we can then think of how to improve further when we play the three qualifiers,” he added.

“My objective is very clear: to go through to the AFC Asian Cup Finals. Our opponents might be stronger in terms of FIFA rankings, but I have full confidence in the team. The boys must have the belief that they can match the opponents with the aim to get positive results in all the games.”


Pictures Courtesy #FAS

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