Albirex Niigata (S) set to unveil Adam Swandi

Gabriel Tan Gabriel Tan

Adam Swandi will officially become Albirex Niigata (S)’s first-ever Singaporean player when he is unveiled over the next couple of days.

Since Albirex made their debut in the S.League back in 2004, they have always fielded a squad entirely made up of Japanese players.

However, changes to the format of the S.League for this season have given the White Swans the option of adding two Under-23 Singaporean players to their ranks.

Recent speculation has seen Adam – who spent last season at Home United and scored seven goals in all competition – identified as a possible candidate.

And FOX Sports Asia understands that the move is nearing conclusion and will be made official by Tuesday.

21-year-old Adam has long been regarded as one of Singapore football’s brightest prospects and even earned a two-year youth contract with French outfit Metz back in 2013.

Nonetheless, he ultimately returned to his homeland to begin his professional career with Garena Young Lions three years ago.

A intelligent attacking midfielder with bundles of skill, some have claimed that Adam has thus far failed to deliver on his undoubted potential and has not developed as quickly as he should.

Still, there is no denying he remains one of Singapore’s most-talented youngsters and will have the best chance of developing further at Albirex, a club who specialise in nurturing talent while at the same time challenging for silverware.

The club have swept all four trophies on offer in Singaporean football – the S.League, Singapore Cup, League Cup and Community Shield – in the past two seasons.

While new rules imposed by the S.League mean they will only be allowed one player over the age of 23 in 2018 – veteran goalkeeper Yosuke Nozawa – the club are said to be optimistic in their prospects of challenging for top honours once more under coach Kazuaki Yoshinaga.

Photo credit: Great Eastern-Hyundai S.League