The Japanese is set to guide the Lions through the remainder of the World Cup qualifiers when it resumes in March.
Tatsuma Yoshida will remain at the helm of the Singapore national men’s football team until December 2022, the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) announced on Friday (Feb 5).
The Japanese coach is now set to lead the Lions through the remainder of the World Cup qualifiers, slated to resume in March, as well as the rescheduled AFF Suzuki Cup at the end of the year.
Appointed to the role in June 2019, Tatsuma has overseen nine Singapore matches to date, including five World Cup qualifier matches.
Under Tatsuma’s guidance, the Lions have put up several encouraging displays and recorded two victories and a draw in the World Cup qualifiers, in a group that includes 2018 World Cup side Saudi Arabia, Asian powerhouse Uzbekistan, Yemen and Palestine.
Tatsuma said making the decision to prolong his stay in Singapore was an easy one.
“I am totally satisfied and I feel happy because of my boys and colleagues as they trust me and follow me,” the 46-year-old remarked.
“It must have been a little difficult at the start because I was a newcomer from Japan, but the first two games were crucial and they managed to understand my philosophy and personality, while I also understood their character and Singapore football better.”
Singapore captain and midfielder Hariss Harun hailed the extension, saying that the team is looking forward to continuing working under Tatsuma.
“The team has enjoyed working under Coach Tatsuma since he took charge and the progress that we have made has been clear for everyone to see,” said Hariss, who plays for Malaysian Super League champions Johor Darul Ta’zim.
“The players have benefitted from his methods and beliefs and improved under his guidance. Coach Tatsuma is also very approachable and, together with the rest of the backroom staff, has helped to foster a strong team spirit.
“We are very happy to know that he will continue to lead us and look forward to improving further as we prepare for the international matches in 2021.”
FAS President Lim Kia Tong also expressed his delight at Tatsuma’s contract extension, pointing to the improvement the Lions have made under his tutelage.
“Tatsuma is also very much well-liked by his colleagues, club coaches and the players; he is always willing to share his expertise, and is an excellent ambassador for the FAS,” he added.
“I would also like to express our gratitude to Mr Kohzo Tashima, President of Japan Football Association, for recommending Tatsuma in 2018 and this time for supporting and playing a part in the renewal of his contract.”
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