SINGAPORE: The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) has instructed Singapore Premier League (SPL) club Warriors FC to sit out the 2020 Singapore Premier League season.
In a statement to the media on Tuesday (Dec 31), FAS said the decision was made in the “best interests of the club”.
This followed Warriors FC chairman Philip Lam's interview with the Straits Times where he mentioned that the club had "rejected" the decision by the association.
Lam said: "We have rejected the FAS' decision, and have asked for an urgent meeting, while we also seek legal counsel on the matter.
"It is sad the FAS has not engaged us in this matter and heard us out before it reached this decision, and we hope to hear from the FAS soonest over this decision to have Warriors sit out the 2020 season."
In its response to media queries, the FAS confirmed that it had written to the club, instructing it to sit out of the SPL and Singapore Cup for the next season.
"DIRE FINANCIAL STATE"
“The decision to instruct WRFC (Warriors) to sit out the upcoming season was made in the best interests of the club,” said the FAS.
It added that the club’s “dire financial state" meant that it is unable to comply with the club licensing requirements expected of all SPL clubs.
“At present, WRFC remains liable for a significant amount of debt owed to employees/players and social/tax authorities. These outstanding liabilities have also been the subject of court proceedings against WRFC. This situation has persisted for some time, and the amounts remain substantial. There might be further debts to which FAS may not be privy to.
“To date, WRFC has not yet been able to sufficiently demonstrate that it would be able to meet these outstanding before the start of the 2020 SPL season.”
During the sit-out period, Warriors should focus efforts to consolidate its resources and not incur any additional liabilities without the assurances of new revenue streams, added the FAS.
The association said it has also been in communication with the club since “at least” September this year.
“Notwithstanding, the FAS remains committed to assisting the club to pull through this difficult period, and will continue to render our assistance where we can," it added.