Football

It's about a football culture 

Geylang International have won two trophies since the turn of the millennium - the 2001 S.League and the 2009 Singapore Cup - a far cry from the days when they were regular kings of club football here. 

While on-field results are the benchmark of a great club, Eagles' chairman Leong Kok Fann firmly believes there needs to be a change at the very core of the club before they can spread their wings again. 

"It is very important that we look into the structure and processes within the club to create sustainability, (something) less dependent on personalities," said Leong, who has helmed the club since 2012. 

"Football excellence will come only if we have internalised strong values.

"If each and every member of the Geylang team internalises the values of hard work, passion, commitment and honesty, we will see a change that we can celebrate.  

"In football, as in the journey of life, values are very important." 

Geylang coach Jorg Steinbrunner, who took over from V Kanan in March 2014, has filled the five foreign- player slots, with old boy Jozef Kaplan (above) from Slovakia set to lead the line once again.

Veteran goalkeeper Yazid Yasin, 36, has also been re-signed and will challenge Hairul Syirhan - promoted from the Prime League ranks - for the No. 1 spot.

Administrative changes have been made and the platform for a sustainable commercial model is being formed at the Bedok Stadium.

With discipline also instilled by the coaching staff, Leong believes it is the spirit of things that is key. 

He revealed that while prize money is shared among coaches and players, the club do not subscribe to the local football norm of paying match bonuses to players, because it "runs against the grain of what it means to be a true professional and to give of your best".

"We want to build a culture, so that when a player wears the green and white of Geylang, he knows it stands for something unique and with pride - that's a valuable legacy," said the former Singapore captain. 

"I hope all this doesn't sound too airy fairy.  

"Last season could have been better for us, but the mood in the club now is absolutely different... we are more ready and confident than we were at this time last year."