The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) has decided to disband the LionsXII.
The decision was made on Friday (Dec 4).
On Nov 24, Fandi Ahmad's team were booted out of Malaysian football for next season when the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) unilaterally announced that it will not extend the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with its Singapore counterpart.
Singapore had entered Malaysia's domestic football competitions in 2012.
And 10 days after the FAM's shock announcement in Kuala Lumpur, the LionsXII will cease to exist as a team.
Asean Super League
The New Paper understands that the aim is to reunite them for the Asean Super League (ASL) when the regional league takes shape.
The ASL is projected to kick off in 2017.
The LionsXII players were informed on Friday afternoon that they will be released to S.League clubs, but how they will be split will be decided at an S.League chairmen meeting on Friday night.
The FAS had earlier promised that it will keep the LionsXII players on their current salaries – understood to be higher than the S.League average of $3,000.
TNP understands that the promise will be fulfilled, although details remain sketchy at the moment.
“We are sad (with the decision), of course, I would have preferred that the team stay together to play in the S.League,” said defender Madhu Mohana.
“We've grown together as a team, and it would've been nice to continue to play together, because we're not playing in an individual sport – we are a team.”
This decision indicates that the 2016 S.League season is set to proceed with nine teams, with Malaysia's Harimau Muda being withdrawn as part of the non-extension of the MOU.
LionsXII goalkeeper Izwan Mauhbud is currently on trial with Japanese side Matsumoto Yamaga, while it is understood that a few other players are being courted by Malaysian clubs.
But with the LionsXII players' contracts running out on Dec 31, they are waiting for more details from FAS.
Said Madhu: “I have about one month left of my contract to run, and I have to respect that.
“I just have to wait to find out exactly what the outcome is.”