Former Home United coach Aidil Shahrin made waves across the causeway when he led Kedah to glory in the Malaysian FA Cup, and a fourth-place finish in the MSL (Malaysian Super League) - despite the club's minuscule budget when compared to the traditional powerhouses.
Aidil's coaching abilities may be seen as a surprise by pundits in Malaysia, however, as someone who has witnessed his rise; his success comes as no surprise. When I first followed him closely during his time at Home, I realised he was a coach with immense potential due to his clarity of ideas - how he wants his team to function.
The 42-year-old sets his team up to play attacking football which literally translates to playing without fear. It is a philosophy he has stuck to throughout my time coming into contact with him and he was a breath of fresh air to watch compared to some of the other coaches; which produced dour football.
Subsequently, he is also a man who has the Midas touch when it comes to blooding youngsters. During his time at Home, he wasn't afraid to field a younger player should he be able to perform - even at the expense of displacing senior members of the squad. His 'regardless of age' policy managed to reap dividends as he led the Protectors to the 2018 Asean zonal title of the AFC Cup; restoring some semblance of glory to Singapore football.
It truly was a shame for the Singapore football scene to lose him but then again the Republic always had a knack of underappreciating our local sporting talents. Singapore's loss is Malaysia's gain, and my prediction is that he will continue to garner success across the causeway. However, with that being said, I believe his future may one day lie back in Singapore. Perhaps as coach of the Lions; an ambition, I believe he has. Conclusively, Goal Singapore would just like to say 'Congratulations Coach'.