The Lions will face their regional rivals under caretaker coach Nazri Nasir

Singapore national football team interim head coach Nazri Nasir. (PHOTO: Comment Foo Yeen/Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — The Singapore national football team will face Malaysia and the Philippines in the next international break in March – still without a permanent head coach following the departure of Tatsuma Yoshida last December.

Current national under-23 head coach and former captain Nazri Nasir will lead the interim Lions against Malaysia on March 26 and the Philippines on March 29 for the 2022 FAS Tri-Nations Series International Friendly Tournament at the National Stadium.

This will be Nazri’s second time in charge of the senior team, the first time being the AIRMARINE Cup International Friendly Tournament in 2019. Coincidentally, this tournament was also Singapore’s last against Causeway rivals Malaysia, as they won 1-0.

“It is always an honor to be selected to lead the national team for any international match,” he said in a press release on Wednesday March 16.

“I worked closely with Yoshida as an assistant when he joined us in 2019. I intend to continue the same philosophy and style of play that Tatsuma instilled in players, while implementing my own tactics and strategies for the purposes of this Tri-Nations series.

Permanent head coach expected to be appointed in April

The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) added in the press release that the Lions can expect Yoshida’s permanent successor to be named in April.

The new coach’s first major assignment will be the Asian Cup qualifiers against hosts Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Myanmar in June.

According to The Straits Times, FAS assembled a five-man panel after Yoshida left after the AFF Suzuki Cup, and narrowed down more than 30 candidates to a three-man shortlist for the hot seat: former coach- Home United chief Lee Limsaeng, former Indian national team coach Stephen Constantine and current Albirex Niigata (Singapore) head coach Kazuaki Yoshinaga.

FAS Tri-Nations Series Ticketing Details

The FAS Tri-Nations Series will feature three international friendlies at the National Stadium: Malaysia vs. Philippines on March 23, Singapore vs. Malaysia on March 26, and Singapore vs. Philippines on March 29. All games will start at 8 p.m.

Tickets for all three matches go on sale Friday, March 18 at 10:00 a.m. on the FAS website. Tickets will be priced at S$20 for adults and S$10 for the concession, applicable to students aged 16 and under and seniors aged 60 and over with a valid concession card.

Fans can enjoy a 10% discount when purchasing the Singapore Package, applicable when purchasing both Singapore matches, with tickets selling for S$36 for adults and S$18 at the concession , excluding booking fees.

Fans can also purchase tickets onsite at the Sports Hub ticket office located outside the Kallang Wave Mall on match days from 10am to 9.30pm, subject to availability.

Spectators should take note of the different capacity limits for each game: 5,000 for Malaysia against the Philippines and up to 15,000 for the two games involving Singapore.

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Charles P. Patton