Soccer: Singapore manager Yoshida quits to see family in Japan

© Kyodo News

Singapore national team manager Tatsuma Yoshida is leaving his role at the end of the year to spend time with his family back home in Japan amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Football Association of Singapore said Monday.

The 47-year-old managed Kashiwa Reysol, Albirex Niigata and Ventforet Kofu in the J-League first division before taking charge of Singapore in June 2019.

They went out in the second round of the Asian qualifying round for the 2022 World Cup after finishing fourth out of five teams in Group D, won by Saudi Arabia.

"This was not an easy decision for me to arrive at and a part of me wishes that I did not have to make it at all," Yoshida said in a statement. "The last two years have not been easy for me and my family given the travel restrictions."

"I leave behind my second 'family' here with an extremely heavy heart. I have always trusted and had full confidence in these players, my boys, and I know they have the potential to be among the region's best as long as they continue to believe in themselves."