Singapore

Want to be a full-time footballer in Singapore? It might be easier than you think


Watching a football match is hardly ever complete without fans screaming at players for a misguided pass or a tame shot, claiming they could have done better if given the opportunity.

Well, maybe it’s time to prove that by applying to be a professional footballer. Apparently, it’s just like applying for any other job.

On Tuesday (May 17), Hougang United Football Club posted a job advertisement for a “football player” on the government job portal MyCareersFuture.

The Singapore Premier League side has since received 29 applications via MyCareersFuture at the time of writing. 

The enticing monthly salary of $5,000 to $7,000 might have played a role in the decent number of applicants.

Just like any other job ad, roles and responsibilities along with the job description were laid bare.

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Firstly, applicants need at least three years of playing experience in a highly competitive football league and Hougang United is also looking for players with “a competitive spirit and will to win”.

Among these were also a couple of iffy entries.

“Attend every training session as planned by the coach.”

While we may not be privy to the ins and outs of being a professional athlete, shouldn’t being present for training be a given?

Another skill the club would like applicants to possess is service delivery. It isn’t clear what is meant by this but just to be safe, get practicing on your set-piece delivery.

Facebook page Smrtsg shared with its followers Hougang United’s interesting recruitment methods on Friday (May 20).

“Who needs a transfer market when you have JobsDB?” the caption read​​​​.

Netizens took no time chuckling at a professional football club looking for players through an online job portal. 

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“The only goal I will score is [an] own goal. Can apply?” a Facebook user sarcastically asked.

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With more companies allowing employees to work from home in recent years, one netizen cheekily asked if working from home was a possibility as a Hougang United footballer.

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However, using job portals to recruit professional football players are uncommon, said some members of the football fraternity that AsiaOne spoke to.

One industry insider, who declined to be named, said that the recruiting of football players usually happens through agents or directly with the players.

He added that putting up online job ads for footballers is purely “administrative”.

Another industry source told AsiaOne that this process is carried out when clubs are looking to sign foreign players. 

Each local club, except Albirex Niigata FC (S) and Young Lions, is allowed to register a maximum of four foreign players, of whom at least one shall be of the nationality of an AFC Member Association (Asian). 

Foreign professionals, footballers included, require an Employment Pass to work in Singapore. 

Under the Fair Consideration Framework (FCF), employers submitting Employment Pass applications must first advertise on MyCareersFuture.

Another requirement from the FCF is to fairly consider all MyCareerFuture candidates and not discriminate applicants on characteristics unrelated to the job. 

Currently near the midway point of the season, Hougang United sits sixth in an eight-team league.

On the horizon is a bottom-of-the-table scrap with fellow strugglers Geylang International on May 22.

ALSO READ: My first time… attending a Singapore Premier League game IRL

amierul@asiaone.com



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