Football

Sahil wants 10 goals

There are many new faces in the LionsXII this season. Sazali Abdul Aziz picks out the names to watch

He will make his Malaysian Super League (MSL) debut this season.

And Sahil Suhaimi is already thinking goals.

Like any good striker, he has set himself a target of 10 goals, which is the same as national skipper Shahril Ishak's tally in the LionsXII's first season back in the MSL in 2012, which remains the best haul by a Singapore player.

In 2013, Shahril was again the team's top scorer with eight goals, while Khairul Amri grabbed seven last term

This will be Sahil's first foray in Malaysia's club competitions and, explaining why he was bold enough to target 10 goals, the 22-year-old (above) said the confidence stems from the chemistry he has developed with teammates Amri and Faris Ramli.

The trio are expected to form a menacing attacking triumvirate and Sahil said: "I go into every match aiming to score goals and I think it's possible to score 10 goals again.

"Amri, Faris and I need to use just eye contact and not necessarily verbal communication, so I feel we communicate quite well."

Last year, the stocky youngster proved a success as an out-and-out forward for the Courts Young Lions in the S.League, ending the season as the highest-scoring local player in the competition with 10 goals, despite playing in a team that finished third from bottom.

From watching the LionsXII training sessions, it appears Sahil and Amri will take turns as the main striker and as a wide forward.

While he received brickbats for an off-colour performance while playing as a right winger for the national team at December's AFF Suzuki Cup, Sahil says he is growing into the role.

"Even though it's not my best position, I will do my best to help the team in defence and attack," he said.

"Right now, my aim is to blend well with my new teammates.

"I can't wait to get started."