Tue. Nov 29th, 2022

SINGAPORE – The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) has announced that its technical director Joseph Palatsides has agreed to a two-year extension to his contract until 2023.

Palatsides, 55, was appointed as technical director in May 2019 on an initial two-year contract with the option of a further two years.

In a statement released on Thursday (June 3), FAS said that having committed to continue his work in Singapore, the Australian will play a key role in the Unleash The Roar project, and continue to work closely with all stakeholders to galvanise the nation’s football ecosystem and improve the standards of Singapore football across all levels.

The project is related to the FAS’ goal for the national team to qualify for the 2034 Fifa World Cup, which Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Edwin Tong had first revealed to The Straits Times in August 2019 in his previous role as FAS vice-president.

Prior to coming to Singapore, Palatsides was the head of A-League club Melbourne City’s youth academy.

He was tasked with overseeing the development of Singapore football in all aspects, which includes enhancing the development of the national age-group teams, grassroots and women’s football, as well as further strengthening the youth development and coaching structures.

Palatsides believes there is still “a lot to be done”.

“I joined the FAS because I was attracted by the organisation’s genuine desire to invest in football, and I believe in the potential for Singapore football to continue to grow and reach greater heights,” he said.

“There is still a lot to be done and I am immensely grateful for the support shown by the FAS exco and administration over the past two years as well as their renewed trust in me for the next two years.”

FAS president Lim Kia Tong, who was re-elected to his position in April for the next four years, said that the football body has seen “good progress and promising indicators so far” during Palatsides’ tenure.

Said Lim: “Since coming onboard in 2019, Joseph has set out to further strengthen the foundation of Singapore football to enhance our standards, particularly in the areas of elite youth (male and female) development and coach development.

“He is a hands-on technical director who has settled down quickly into his role and personally established key relationships with members of our local football fraternity – from players, coaches and club administrators to grassroot football stakeholders and schools’ administrators.

“We have seen good progress and promising indicators so far, particularly with the structures being put in place in the FAS technical department by Joseph that complements the desired outcomes of talented young footballers transitioning to the senior football teams.”

Under Palatsides’ leadership, the FAS technical department took the unprecedented step of holding open trials for age-group players to assess potential talents and widen its pool of youth players.

His efforts in youth development were recognised by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) under the Elite Youth Scheme in 2020, when Singapore was offered full membership into the programme.

By rahul