Singapore women’s football team head coach Karim Bencherifa calls up first squad since taking over

The women’s team will take part in the first round of the Asian qualifiers for the 2024 Olympics.

Farhana Subuhan

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Published: 28 March 2023, 4:39 PM

Singapore women’s football national team head coach Karim Bencherifa has called up his first squad since taking over reigns last month.

The squad of 22 players, announced on Tuesday (Mar 28), will take part in the first round of Asian qualifiers of the 2024 Olympics in Chonburi, Thailand.

Two overseas-based players, Danelle Tan and Putri Syaliza, headline the call up.

Danelle is the first Singaporean female footballer to play in Europe, plying her trade with English team London Bees, while Putri is the first Singaporean to play in Thailand’s Women League 1.

Rosani Azman, who plays for Hougang United in the Women’s Premier League (WPL) after returning from a two-year stint in Japan, has been called-up too.

Karim said that the qualifiers will be “a good way to prepare for upcoming tournaments like the SEA Games”.

Singapore were drawn into Group D of the qualifiers, alongside hosts Thailand and Mongolia. Sri Lanka were supposed to be the fourth team in the group, but their participation was withdrawn after the Football Federation of Sri Lankan were suspended by FIFA in January.

Singapore, who are ranked 134th in the world, will face 44th-ranked Thailand on Apr 1 and 128th-ranked Mongolia on Apr 4.

Only the winners of the group will advance into the second round of the qualifiers.

Karim shared that the girls were selected based on their performances in the WPL and other age group tournaments, including the ability to fit into the strategies they will adopt.

“There will be a blend of experience and youth as my coaching staff, and I are keen on exposing the talented young players to the rigors of international football,” he said.

Full squad list:

Goalkeepers: Noor Kusumawati (Lion City Sailors), Beatrice Tan (Lion City Sailors), Erlinawaty Jaffar (Hougang United)

Defenders: Ernie Sulastri (Lion City Sailors), Fatin Ridzwan (Lion City Sailors), Syazwani Ruzi (Lion City Sailors), Umairah Hamdan (Lion City Sailors), Rosnani Azman (Hougang United), Nurerwadah Erwan (Balestier Khalsa)

Midfielders: Dhaniyah Qasimah (Tanjong Pagar United), Khairunnisa Anwar (Lion City Sailors), Venetia Lim (Lion City Sailors), Farhanah Ruhaizat (Tampines Rovers), Rochelle Chan (Hougang United), Putri Syaliza (Oakland University), Sitianiwati Rosielin (Police Sports Association), Stephanie Gigette (Tampines Rovers)

Forwards: Danelle Tan (London Bees), Farah Nurzahirah (Tanjong Pagar United), Lila Tan (Lion City Sailors), Izzati Rosni (Lion City Sailors), Raudhah Kamis (Hougang United)

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