FINALLY!!! Our first Cup win in Malaysian football since 1994. The hopeful expectation of a people, crying for another glorious chapter to be written, was building up day by day. Our LionsXII took it on their young shoulders, and delivered in emphatic style.
Until our boys’ Malaysia FA Cup heroics, 2015 had been a underwhelming year for Singapore football, to say the least. As we counted down to the SEA Games, one could sense that the football gold was arguably what the nation coveted the most. After a disappointing MSL campaign in 2014, the fans didn’t dare dream of winning anything this season either.
But Fandi Ahmad and Nazri Nasir went about pre-season without fanfare, putting in hours and hours of hard work with the team. They were quietly confident in their young charges, instilling in them the belief and fighting spirit. The LionsXII have always tried to entertain the fans with attacking football, while staying disciplined and organised. Their Cup-run with spectacular goals, kept the fans buzzing. With every win, the belief got stronger, the fans cheered louder and the players ran harder.
Kudos to the FAS team (President Zainudin, Stange, Aide and Fandi) for allowing the SEA Games quartet of Faris, Sahil, van Huizen and Zakir to continue in the LionsXII Cup pursuit. This win has truly vindicated their decision. As fate would have it, Faris and Sahil scored all 3 goals to send Singapore fans into delirium. Suddenly the feel-good factor is back! They could very well be the leading lights for our SEA Games squad come June. Special praise has to be reserved for Izwan Mahbud for being a mammoth hero in goal.
It has been an impressive road to Cup glory. On behalf of Singapore football fans, thank you Fandi and Co, you have put the smile back on our faces. You have re-ignited the flame in the Lion’s heart.
To Aide and team, let us continue and stoke this fire together. You guys have the whole nation’s faith and support.
“All of us agree that it will be a good psychological boost for the four if they can feature in the FA Cup semis and possibly the final,” coach Aide said. Well, we’ve got exactly what we ordered. Time to serve up a fiery dish to our Asean rivals.