The Lion City Sailors are targeting an improved showing in their second Singapore Cup campaign which kicks off next month, after the conclusion of the 2023 Singapore Premier League (SPL) season on 16 September. 

Aleksandar Ranković’s side will face holders Hougang United, Balestier Khalsa and Tanjong Pagar United in Group B, following a virtual draw ceremony held at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Thursday (24 August) afternoon. 

Meanwhile Group A see reigning SPL champions Albirex Niigata (S) face Geylang International, Young Lions, Brunei DPMM and Tampines Rovers. 

Group stage matches will be played between 24 September to 26 November, with exact fixtures to be announced at a later date. 

The top two of each group will progress to the two-legged semi-finals, scheduled on 3 and 6 December. The grand final will be played on 9 Dec at Jalan Besar.

Sailors captain Hariss Harun has called for strong performances in the Singapore Cup, especially after a disappointing debut campaign in 2022 that saw the club fail to get out of the group stages – finishing third behind Albirex and Balestier in Group A.  

“We let our fans and ourselves down last season. We ought to do better this time round and we’re determined to go all the way this year,” said the 32-year-old. 

“It won’t be easy as we’ll be juggling our commitments in the AFC (Asian Football Confederation) Champions League while the Singapore Cup is going on. But there can be no excuses – we’re going out there to try and achieve history by winning the club’s first-ever Singapore Cup.”