SINGAPORE: The acting president of the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) apologised on Friday (May 12) after a curt response to a comment on Singapore's 7-0 defeat by Malaysia at the SEA Games.
The result on Thursday was Singapore's worst since a 5-0 beating by Thailand at the last edition. It also ensured the under-22 footballers ended their campaign bottom of the group and with no wins for the first time since 1987.
The FAS chief Bernard Tan had responded to a comment on his Instagram account calling for his resignation. The user, nic_8276, added: "You (Tan) are not worthy of the paycheck."
In response, Mr Tan said he is not paid and proposed a "one-time offer".
"Instead of abusing me here. Abuse me face to face. Let's meet," wrote Mr Tan. " Drop me an email ... I will leave your comment for 24 hours. After which I will delete you. It's my wall."
His Instagram account has since been set to private.
In an Instagram post on Friday, Mr Tan called the 7-0 defeat "one of the worst nights in our history".
"(Events) of last night led to emotions running high with some abuse on my social media from unfamiliar accounts," read the post. "I regret responding and apologise deeply. I hold myself to a higher standard. I am human. I was hurting too."
He said that he had always wanted to be more open through social media and to meet people privately as "there are many who have offered constructive feedback and perceptions from the ground."
He added that FAS had advised him and its members that open engagement with its stakeholders was "best done in formal organised settings".
"Tough questions will be asked over the next two weeks and we will do this openly," he said.
In comments to CNA on Friday afternoon, Mr Tan said: "I appreciate the support that people have conveyed to me and the FAS."
Additional reporting by Matthew Mohan.