KUCHING: Three foreign imports and a Malaysia international player will be the driving force behind Sarawak United Football Club (SUFC) next season in its mission to win promotion to the Super League.
SUFC brought in Australian Taylor Regan, South Korean Lee Chang Hoon, Brazilian Sandro Mendoca and national striker Norshahrul Idlan Talaha to improve the strength of the team before the start of the M-League season.
SUFC president Dato Posa Majais hoped that with the new signings, the club can pose a good challenge in the Premier League.
“2020 has been a difficult year for SUFC and the effects will certainly be felt again next year.
“As such, the SUFC management has come up with a short term strategic plan considering the target from our supporters especially the people of Sarawak who wants us to pose a strong challenge in the Premier League 2021 or win promotion to Super League 2022,” Posa said in a statement.
To achieve that target, Posa said SUFC would step up efforts to sign players capable of bringing the club to the next level.
“We have the responsibility to the supporters, stakeholders, sponsors and the state to ensure that ‘The Golden Hornbills’ will spur Sarawak to achieve success in the football arena,” he stressed.
According to head coach El Elavarasan, the SUFC management had set a clear target and he will try to attract players of high-calibre as well as retain local players who have performed well last season.
Apart from that, he is also planning to bring in a few young players who could shape the future of Sarawak football.
“I have met the players and asked them to be well prepared both physically and mentally for a long season ahead,” he added.
On Regan, Elavarasan said he was recruited based on his experience in playing at the highest level in Australia and playing for two years in the Super League, as well as his leadership and playing capability.
As for the experienced Sandro, he is one of the key players who have brought excitement to the M-League.
“The team needs a player who is vocal and display leadership in the midfield and Lee Chang Hoon, who played for Penang FC this year, will be the goal poacher for SUFC in the new season,” he said.
Meanwhile, Norshahrul said he was excited to have joined SUFC.
“Head coach Elavarasan has gathered young and experienced players and I am confident that the team will achieve success in the new season,” the 28-year-old striker said.
Other players who have signed their contracts with SUFC are former UiTM FC goalkeeper Mohd Nor Haziq Mohd Aris, Tommy Mawat, Nor Shamie Iszuan, Shaiful Wazizi Mohammad, Aquila Abdul Rahman, Nor Azizi Ramlee, Abdul Rahim Abdul Razak, Alan Lagang Keryer, Asri Chuchu, Abdul Rahman Ismawi and Zahrul Nizwan.