The Lion City Sailors Women’s Team have strengthened their squad by adding four new signings during the Deloitte Women’s Premier League (WPL) mid-season transfer window.

Priscille Le Helloco, Nurhidayu Naszri, Natasha Naszri, and Nur Ain Salleh have joined the reigning WPL champions, who are aiming not only for a third consecutive league title but also to make an impression at the inaugural Asian Football Confederation Women Champions League (AWCL) Qualifiers.

Sailors Women Head Coach Daniel Ong believes the four new additions will provide healthy competition within the team and help them cope with the demands of playing in two competitions.

“We’re always looking for ways to improve the team and evolve our style of play. The inclusion of these players will foster strong and healthy competition as we head into a crucial period of the season,” 35-year-old Daniel said.

“I’ve either worked with some of them or watched them up close before, so I know the qualities they will bring to the team. They’re all technically-gifted players who have a good understanding of the game. Equally important, they’re players who have great personalities and are eager to improve themselves.

“With these four additions, we now have cover for every role, and most of our players know how to operate in at least two positions. I know I can count on every player, and they can be relied upon to step in at any moment.”

Both Priscille and Nurhidayu have joined the Sailors from BG Tampines Rovers, where they spent the past one and half seasons. 

Equally adept on the wings and as a striker, 17-year-old Priscille enjoyed an outstanding debut WPL campaign as she led BG Tampines in both assists and goals (nine) in 2023. Priscille, who was born in France, has lived in Singapore for the past eight years, and previously played in the JSSL League.

Meanwhile, 20-year-old Nurhidayu – who can play both at left-back and in central midfield – is looking to revive her promising footballing career after spending a year out of the game due to an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear. Prior to the injury, she had established himself as a regular member of the Singapore Women’s National Team, and even featured in the Lionesses’ 2022 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games campaign.

Joining Nurhidayu at the club is her younger sister, Natasha, who has rejoined the Sailors Women until the end of the 2024 WPL season. Thereafter, the 17-year-old will return to Madrid, Spain, to complete the final two years of her three-year stint at the ESC LaLiga Academy as part of her Unleash the Roar! (UTR) scholarship.

Having made her WPL debut for the Sailors Women back in 2023, Natasha will add creativity, power, and strength to the midfield alongside the likes of Ho Hui Xin and Dorcas Chu. 

Ain, the first female Scholar of the Sailors Football Academy, will complete the new quartet, although her inclusion is subject to a technical assessment by the Football Association of Singapore. The 14-year-old has been promoted to the senior squad following several impressive displays for the club’s Under-13 Elite Boys’ team – a move that was endorsed by her coach, Ashraf Ariffin.

A right winger with superb technical ability, steely determination, and grit, Ain is a promising prospect poised for a breakthrough. 

And she cannot wait to make her WPL bow.

“I’m really excited to be given this opportunity to represent the Sailors Women’s Team. It’s a goal I’ve been working towards for the last couple of years. I’ve to thank Coach Achap (Ashraf) for all his guidance and encouragement in helping me make this step up,” said the teenager. 

“I’m going to work very hard to show my qualities and prove that I can play at this level. Being on the same team with such talented and experienced players is something that I’m really looking forward to, and I just want to make the best of this chance by learning everything I can from them.”

Meanwhile, three players will be de-registered from the squad for the remainder of the season. They are German midfielder Laura Gänser, and defenders Nadia Nuraffendi and Fatin Aqillah, who are still recovering from their ACL injuries.