Wind of change – Local football on the up?

The musical chair for local football continues. There is a wind of change as FAS appoints Michel Sablon as its new technical director.

Amid the criticism surrounding local football recently with poor showings by the Singapore national and youth teams, PlayPal certainly feels that this is a move by FAS in the right direction and has given us some cause for positivity.

Surely, hiring someone who was Belgium’s technical director and who transformed them into a major footballing force can’t be wrong? Add in the fact that Sablon’s probably why you get to see Fellaini, Hazard and Courtois in the EPL and you will probably have a better idea of FAS’s coup this time. If you need more convincing, read this article from The Guardian narrating how his blueprint gave birth to Belgium’s golden generation.

Belgium’s blueprint that gave birth to a golden generation

local football

Local football version of this trio coming up soon?

However, before we get all excited about how Sablon is going to change Singapore football’s history, we do feel that a sense of realism is much needed. There is much work (revamp) to be done for Singapore football and Sablon definitely must be given time to work his stuff and magic. Sablon’s contract period of 2 years would be too short a time to expect any visible and significant positive change in Singapore football. If you ask us, let’s take a timeframe of 5 to 10 years before we start assessing whether his plan for us will work. Sablon may not even be around with the FAS after 2 years but it is crucial that there is longevity in his plan and that FAS will continue in the strategic direction set. There should not be knee-jerk reactions now and then when results are not going our way, we are preaching patience here.

That being said, PlayPal do have for Sablon an immediate Singapore football wishlist in line with his recent appointment:

S.League 3.0 (S.League 2.0 was launched in 2012)

  • A more competitive local league with higher quality of play
  • Wider fan support and loyalty – aligning the clubs to their respective area/region

Youth involvement and development

  • Promote more playing time as kids are interested in the game but not playing enough
  • The right football curriculum with proper guidance and support from coaches


  • The availability and quality of football fields

The tasks ahead for Sablon and Singapore football will be huge and the journey long. But if Singapore football doesn’t dream, we will never reach the next step. We at PlayPal are behind Sablon and wish him all the best as he gets up to speed in his new role and the local football revolution.





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