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South Korea warn against LVG, AVB rumours

South Korea
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 By Kelvin Leong

Wahyudi has one goal in reunion with Hougang Hools in S.League

Wahyudi will make his return to Hougang United in the 2016 season. (Photo credit: S.League)

Defender Wahyudi Wahid will have a lone target when he makes his S.League comeback with former club Hougang United next season.

The speedy centre-back left the northeastern side for LionsXII earlier this year but made only four appearances in all competitions, two coming as a substitute.

But he still considers his time in the Malaysia Super League (MSL) to be a valuable learning experience.

"I'm thankful to be part of the LionsXII," Wahyudi told ESPN FC. "Because I was able to train with a huge number of national team players, and play in front of full house crowds and against some of the top players in the MSL.

"To have won a FA Cup medal -- even though I didn't contribute as much as I would've liked to -- was amazing."

Even before LionsXII's exit from Malaysian football, Wahyudi had made the decision to sign with Hougang for the 2016 season.

While most of his former teammates have spoken to different S.League clubs over the past few weeks, Wahyudi had eyes for only one club due to his connection to a familiar set of supporters.

He said: "I still had a remaining contract with them so it was my first choice to go back to Hougang. It feels great to be back home at Hougang and the staff, players and fans have always been very supportive of me.

"I love the atmosphere at our home ground, especially the Hougang Hools who help to make every home game a memorable one. I can't wait to start training and get back in sync with my new teammates."

Hougang Hools is one of the top supporter clubs in the S.League. (Photo credit: S.League)

With K. Balagumaran at the helm, Hougang will be hoping to put an awful 2015 season behind them, finishing rock bottom. They're aiming for at least a mid-table finish, with new faces, like Geylang International's Jozef Kaplan and Afiq Noor, already pledging their future to the club.

As for Wahyudi, he is hoping to help the club finish in the top five in the league, although the challenge will be a big one with many of his former LionsXII teammates strengthening some of Hougang's 2016 S.League rivals.

"The league will definitely be better than this year because of the inclusion of the LionsXII players," said the 26-year-old.

"Previously, they have always played for LionsXII or Young Lions but next year, they will be with various S.League clubs and the playing quality across the field will be much better, so an exciting year beckons for all of us involved.

"For my personal target, I am looking to get at least one goal for the team because I have yet to find the target with Hougang. And a top five finish is what I hope we can do as a team. One team, One Hougang."

Balagumaran has yet to confirm his 2016 lineup but five players from this season's squad -- Ridhuan Barudin, Faiz Salleh, Nurhilmi Jasni, Delwinder Singh and Basil Chan -- have been retained.

Hougang have also moved fast to bring in LionsXII defensive midfield lynchpin Raihan Rahman, with rumours that Young Lions' rising star M. Anumanthan has also pledged his name to the cause.

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