Balestier Khalsa could be poised to make notable changes to their spending patterns in 2010, as they look towards strengthening their squad for the upcoming season.
The news comes after the Toa Payoh-based club had finished bottom of the league for a second consecutive year, an incidental outcome of the club’s current youth-based policy.
Under the policy, Balestier filled most of their roster with inexperienced players who were in their early twenties, many of whom had come through the club’s age-group ranks.
The result was a squad that often lost out to opponents who were populated with more seasoned players, thus keeping them in the lower reaches of the table in recent years.
But after years of living frugally, the Tigers’ financial position appears to be slowly improving, giving them a little more spending power this time around.
And club vice-chairman S. Thavaneson has promised to use some of that extra cash to recruit some older heads in a bid to lift the club off last place.
“Some of the youth players we have been developing have come through the system, and are ready to be considered full-fledged S.League players,” he told sleague.com.
“But these boys are still young, so they need some players with experience to start guiding them through. So our plan for 2010 is to strengthen the team with perhaps four more experienced players to link up with the group that has been coming through.
“Our revenue streams for this year have enabled us to take off most of our carry-forward losses, which is really heavy baggage. Now we can inject more of our money towards getting the better players we are looking for.
“We will certainly put up a far stronger challenge in 2010. I think our performance will be far better, and I am confident to say we are not going to finish in our ‘usual’ position.”
The club has already started rebuilding as they released all their foreigners - Chilean midfielder Julio Eduardo, Korean trio of Oh Ddog Yi, Oh In Kyun and Jun Jin, as well as Australian defender Jamie Alan Pitt.
In their place are believed to be Woodlands Wellington defender Daniel Hammond and former New Zealand defender Paul Cunningham.
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