THE Singapore Under-23 football team suffered yet another defeat yesterday in their build-up to next month’s SEA Games.
The 1-2 loss in Gotemba, Japan, came against Azul Claro Numazu, a side that currently play in the Japan Football League, the nation’s fourth division and its top level of amateur football.
Irfan Fandi netted the Young Lions’ solitary goal in the 41st minute, heading in a cross from Ho Wai Loon. The Japanese outfit had netted two goals in the opening 10 minutes.
The defeat is the latest setback in friendly matches for Aide Iskandar’s side this year.
The Singapore U-22s were upset 3-1 by the Cambodia U-22 team in March. Before that they suffered a 1-8 loss to Japan’s U-22s and a 2-1 defeat by Syria’s U-23 side in February.
Said Aide after yesterday’s defeat in Japan: “We were experimenting with different tactics to see what works best for us and we had a lot of positives in the second half. I have a better idea of what needs to be done for the next friendly game on Saturday.”
The Young Lions’ centralised training stint in Japan will end with another friendly against Shizuoka Sangyo University tomorrow.
They will face the Philippines in their SEA Games opener on June 1 at the Jalan Besar Stadium.