News • January 16, 2016

Van Huizen Glad For 2015 Experience, Looking To Grow


Written By: Kenneth Ho

For Christopher Van Huizen , the year 2015 was a rollercoaster ride he would not miss for the world.

“I finally gained my confidence (from my experiences last year) and I feel like I can actually push myself and be comfortable with the team,” Van Huizen explained

It all started with him receiving a contract offer from the LionsXII, but Van Huizen was dealt a blow when he was left out of the final Under-23 squad that went to the Southeast Asian Games 2015 in June.

He experienced joy again months later, making his international debut for Singapore against Asian powerhouses Japan. But once again, bad news followed as he learnt that the LionsXII were to be disbanded after they were kicked out of all Malaysian football competitions.

Now back with Tampines Rovers in the Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League, the winger hopes to continue his development as he eyes a spot in the final squad for the year-end Suzuki Cup international tournament.

“Tampines is where I started from and where I started to progress into becoming who I am today,” Van Huizen said. “So it feels good to be back, but it’s also a challenge.

“Coming back here is not like ‘Okay, I’ve won my spot and I already have it’. The club now has become bigger and much better in terms of development and everything. So for me it’s a challenge.”

One of Van Huizen’s challenges this year will be to earn playing time, and it will not come easy after the Stags announced that they will be signing former English Premier League player Jermaine Pennant, who plays in Van Huizen’s role.

The 23-year-old insisted that he was not affected by the Englishman’s arrival, and instead expressed his own admiration for the former Arsenal and Liverpool winger.

“He was my cheat player in FIFA, you know?” Van Huizen said.

He added; “With Jermaine in the team, I think the population and the fan base would probably rise up for us.

“It’s a bit bittersweet because he kind of plays in my position and it is gonna be very difficult but I already came here with the mindset that I’m not gonna have this position,

“I have to fight no matter what. Everything is a learning experience for me, I just have to take a step at a time and then continue.“