Footballer Ilhan Fandi to undergo knee surgery for torn ACL, out for 6 to 9 months

Ilhan sustained the injury during Singapore’s AFF Mitsubishi Electric Cup 2022 match against Vietnam.

Liam Willett

Aspiring cat dad.

Published: 11 January 2023, 12:21 PM

Footballer Ilhan Fandi will be out of action for the majority of 2023 after tearing his left anterior cruciate ligament completely, the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) announced on Tuesday (Jan 10). 

The 20-year-old forward, who is the third son of Singapore legend Fandi Ahmad, suffered the knee injury towards the end of the first half during Singapore’s ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Mitsubishi Electric Cup 2022 Group B match against Vietnam at Jalan Besar Stadium on Dec 30. 

The game ended 0-0. Singapore were eventually knocked out of the tournament after losing 4-1 to Malaysia in the final group stage match. 

Ilhan is scheduled to go for surgery on Wednesday with FAS covering all costs related to the surgery. Orthopaedic surgeon Dr Lim Jit Kheng, who FAS described as “one of Singapore’s top surgeons with extensive experience regarding such surgeries for elite footballers and athletes”, will perform the surgery. 

Post-surgery, Ilhan is expected to be sidelined for six to nine months while he undergoes the appropriate rehabilitation programmes.

FAS is currently in discussions with Belgium club KMSK Deinze, which had signed Ilhan from Singapore Premier League club Albirex Niigata in December, regarding further plans for Ilhan.

Ilhan would have been the first Singaporean to play in Belgium in 2023, and the second Fandi sibling after Ikhsan to play in Europe. 

“We wish Ilhan a successful surgery and a swift recovery as we look forward to having him back in national colours soon,” said FAS.

Older brother Ikhsan, also a forward, had injured his knee ahead of the AFF Cup in December in a friendly against Maldives, which was played at the Jalan Besar Stadium.

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