Singapore Football

U-23 coach Aide insists he's not quitting FAS

Decked out in the colours of the national Under-23 side, Aide Iskandar cut a lone figure at the Changi Airport last Thursday.

He left Austria a week before his team are due to return from their 17-day sojourn (July 7-23) in Salzburg, also missing out on last night's 5-0 win over German side TSV Freilassing.

That was the third and final fixture for the U-23s, who were earlier beaten 6-1 by Czech side FK Pribram, and 5-0 by Borussia Dortmund's U-23s. 

Despite national coach Bernd Stange expressing concern over the results and performances of the U-23s in Austria, Aide stressed that his early return is not an indication of estrangement from the team, or that he may leave the national set-up.

Speaking to The New Paper at the airport, Aide said: "I've already spoken with my bosses, and they know why I'm coming back now."

"I've just had a new baby (born in early last month) and I've come back to be with my family," added Aide of the birth of his fourth child.

COMMITTED 

"I'm committed to the team and, if I wanted to resign, I would've called for a press conference.

"I don't want to speculate on (my future)." 

In response to TNP's queries, Football Association of Singapore director of marketing and communications, Gerard Wong confirmed that "family matters" were the reason for Aide's early return. 

He added: "Fandi Ahmad has taken over Aide's coaching role with the U-23 team in Salzburg, and will work together with coaches Stange and S. Subramani to prepare the squad for their remaining fixture." 

The U-23 side will continue their preparation for the 2015 South-east Asia Games, by participating in the S.League under the banner of the Courts Young Lions, with Aide at the helm. 

The team sit in 11th spot in the 12-team standings, and will return to action on Aug 3, hosting the league's bottom side, Malaysia's Harimau Muda B.