Fandi Ahmad announces Singapore 23-man squad for 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup

Kelvin Leong Kelvin Leong

Singapore head coach Fandi Ahmad has revealed his 23-man squad for the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup, with a few surprise exclusions.

The Lions are back in Singapore after a two-week training camp in Osaka, Japan where they played three friendlies against local sides.

The four-time champions will now go into their final preparations before kicking off their campaign in Group B against defending champions Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines and Timor-Leste.

With their opening game on November 9 against Bima Sakti’s Indonesia at the National Stadium at Kallang, Fandi had to make a final decision quickly.

The players who were left out of the final squad includes Warriors FC duo Khairul Nizam and Ho Wai Loon, Tampines stars Madhu Mohana and Zulfadhmi Suzliman, along with Balestier Khalsa midfielder Huzaifah Aziz.

The goalkeeper spot will see a tussle between Hassan Sunny, Izwan Mahbad and Zaiful Nizam while Khairul Amri, Iqbal Hussain and Shahril Ishak provide attacking flair alongside Ikhsan Fandi.

In midfield, Fandi has opted to go with the likes of Gabriel Quak, Adam Swandi, Yasir Hanapi and Faris Ramli to provide the width down the flanks.

Safuwan Baharudin, Baihakki Khaizan and Irfan Fandi are the centre-back options while Shakir Hamzah is the likely starting left-back.

The biggest question mark at right-back saw Madhu miss out as Faritz Hameed, Nazrul Nazari slug it out with Zulqarnaen Suzliman for a starting berth.

Singapore 23-man squad for 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup

Goalkeepers: Hassan Sunny, Izwan Mahbud, Zailful Nizam

Defenders: Faritz Hameed, Shakir Hamzah, Nazrul Nazari, Zulqarnaen Suzliman, Irfan Fandi, Baihakki Khaizan, Safuwan Baharudin

Midfielders: Hariss Harun, Gabriel Quak, Yasir Hanapi, Izzdin Shafiq, Adam Swandi, M. Anumanthan, Jacob Mahler, Zulfahmi Arifin

Forwards: Shahril Ishak, Faris Ramli, Iqbal Hussain, Khairul Amri, Ikhsan Fandi