Hassan Sunny: After Army United snub, Singapore goalkeeper mulls S. League return

Hassan Sunny joined Army United in 2014 with a three-year contract.

Hassan Sunny
File photo of Singapore custodian Hassan Sunny (R) Reuters

Singapore goalkeeper Hassan Sunny is gearing up to contact S.League clubs after Thai Premier League (TPL) club Army United are set to cancel his contract, with a year left.

The 32-year-old, who joined the Thai league's top-flight club in 2014, signed a three-year-contract which would have seen him ply his trade in Thailand till 2017. However, Army United was relegated from the top-tier football league in the Southeast Asian country at the end of 2016 season, which was cut short due to the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

Relegation has forced the team management to put a cap on their budget for the next season and thus they are planning to retain only 10 players from the current squad.

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The move comes days after TPL reportedly announced that there would be an Asean player slot for teams in the second tier league from 2017 and also in the top-tier from 2018, which would see players from the Asean region playing in Thailand.

The former Tampines Rovers star, who has also played for Geylang United, Young Lions and Warriors, revealed that the Thai club informed him of the decision recently and that he will be allowed to negotiate with other clubs.

Sunny though believes that his inspiring performance in the ongoing AFF Suzuki Cup tournament will fetch him quite a few offers from both S.League as well as foreign clubs.

Notably, Singapore were knocked out in the group stages of the Asean tournament after the Lions managed only one point from their three games. However, Sunny's performances gave something to cheer for the fans back home, who were disappointed with the campaign that was cut short.

"I was in Bangkok earlier this week and spoke to the club's general manager, who told me the club were 90 per cent likely to cancel my contract," Hassan said, as quoted by The New Paper.

"I have already been told I can speak to other clubs. They [Army United] will have another meeting on Monday, to finalise the paperwork.

"The GM has assured me there will be no issues, and they will compensate me. He also said they had zero issues about my performance and felt very sorry to let me go, but their budget issue forced them to take this action.

"I will speak to some S.League clubs soon, but I hope my performance in the Suzuki Cup is enough to impress clubs overseas that I have what it takes to play for them."