There were no ifs and buts. Without hesitation, national football coach Bernd Stange told The New Paper in an interview yesterday: “We must beat Malaysia on Aug 8 and we should win the Suzuki Cup at the end of the year.
“If we don’t have such ambitions, then we should tell the organisers we don’t want to play, please take us out of the competition.”
It is exactly a year to the day since the 66-year-old German was appointed Singapore coach. At his unveiling on May 15 last year, Stange (above) said: “There are 3.5 million Singaporeans. That’s a lot of young talent. We have the potential to have a powerful national team.”
One year on, the former coach of Belarus and Iraq has not lost any of his enthusiasm and optimism. While Singapore are still far from being Asian powerhouses, there have been steady steps taken in the right direction.