Who's feeling the heat? FFT’s 2017 S.League Coach Pressure Index
Kazuaki Yoshinaga (Albirex Niigata) – 3/5
Some things are never meant to be replicated, such as Manchester United's famous treble in 1999 or, in local context, Albirex’s stunning quadruple feat in 2016.
We’re pretty sure Albirex chairman Daisuke Korenaga would never set such an improbable target for his new gaffer to achieve from day one.
Thus, Yoshinaga should be able to step out of his predecessor Naoki Naruo’s shadow and focus on the primary target of developing this group of talented Japanese youngsters.
We reckon that as long the White Swans continue to play their technically-proficient game, attain a top-three finish and retain one of their two domestic cups, it should be viewed as a successful season for the 48-year-old newcomer.
Juergen Raab (Tampines Rovers) – 4/5
On paper, the Tampines squad does not look as strong as last season, but the target remains the same – to do well in four competitions and, most importantly, win a first S.League title in four years.
Raab may have earned rave reviews for his handling of the Young Lions back following the 2015 SEA Games debacle, but reputation counts for nothing in such a hot seat.
The 58-year-old German ought to hit the ground running and get his team to gel quickly, or risk playing catch-up in what should be a tightly-contested race for the title.
With old guards like Mustafic Fahrudin and Daniel Bennett, he needs to plan his squad selection wisely in the weeks there are AFC Cup fixtures sandwiched between league games.
The pressure will quickly mount should they suffer a group stage exit in the AFC Cup and not be amongst the leading pack after the first few rounds of league fixtures.