Safuwan Baharudin

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Safuwan Baharudin
1 Safuwan Baharudin 2012.jpg
Safuwan in 2012
Personal information
Full name Muhammad Safuwan bin Baharudin[1]
Date of birth (1991-09-22) 22 September 1991 (age 27)
Place of birth Singapore
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)[2]
Playing position Midfielder, defender, forward
Club information
Current team
Pahang FA
Number 21
Youth career
2005–2009 National Football Academy
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2009–2011 Young Lions FC 57 (9)
2012–2015 LionsXII 48 (10)
2015Melbourne City FC (loan) 6 (2)
2016–2017 PDRM FA 35 (14)
2018– Pahang FA 29 (2)
National team
2010– Singapore 91 (11)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 05:01, 5 October 2018 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 10 September 2019

Muhammad Safuwan bin Baharudin (born 22 September 1991) is a Singapore international footballer who currently plays as a defender or midfielder for Pahang FA in the Malaysia Super League. He is known for being a technical player with good pace, excellent reading of the game and ball-playing capabilities. He also has a knack for scoring goals.

Starting off his professional career as a centre-back, Safuwan's attributes and versatility also allow him to play as a midfielder or forward when required.

Club career[edit]

Early years[edit]

Safuwan started out playing as a striker during his Institute of Technical Education years and subsequently as a midfielder at the National Football Academy (NFA).[3][4] Salim Moin, his NFA Under-17 coach, was credited with switching him to the centre-back position he currently plays in.

Young Lions[edit]

Safuwan began his professional football career with S.League club Young Lions in July 2009, after he was promoted from the National Football Academy Under-18s.[5]

Safuwan was one of the Young Lions players that got involved in an on-pitch fight with several Beijing Guoan Talent players in their S.League match on 7 September 2010. He was charged by the FAS for gross misconduct and bringing the game into disrepute, and was fined S$2,000 for his part in the brawl.[6]


In December 2011, the FAS announced that Safuwan will join the newly formed LionsXII in the 2012 Malaysia Super League. The LionsXII finished runners-up in their debut season.

Safuwan in the starting eleven of LionsXII playing against Kuala Lumpur FA, 17 January 2012

Safuwan formed a strong understanding with Baihakki Khaizan in central defence as LionsXII won the 2013 Malaysia Super League with the competition's best defensive record. He contributed with five goals in 26 matches. Amid interest from Thai, Indonesian and rival Malaysia Super League sides including T-Team, he put pen to paper in a new two-year deal with LionsXII in November 2013.[7][8][9][10]

Safuwan capped off his league performances by becoming the first male recipient of the annual Straits Times Athlete of the Year award in 2013.[11]

Following the departure of regular defensive partner Baihakki in 2014, Safuwan formed a new partnership with new LionsXII recruit Afiq Yunos. He also showed his versatility with lauded displays in advanced midfield and attacking roles.[12][13] Safuwan's performances up front and LionsXII's poor goal scoring form led to head coach Fandi Ahmad having to consider playing him as a forward in more games.[3] Safuwan started in an advanced midfield role behind striker Khairul Amri in a Malaysia Super League match away to Sarawak on 15 March.[14] On 25 March, he scored a late winner over Perak to send LionsXII up to 5th in the league table. He scored his second goal in as many games four days later as LionsXII drew 1–1 with T-Team and followed it up with the opener off a Shahfiq Ghani cross against Sime Darby on 5 April.

Melbourne City[edit]

On 29 January 2015, it was announced that Safuwan had signed a 3-month loan contract with A-League team Melbourne City.[15]

Safuwan earned the contract after his standout performance at a MCFC's training camp in Abu Dhabi, which was held from 10 January 2015 to 19 January 2015. He attended the training camp as part of a development opportunity arranged with the FAS. The club substantiated the decision to take Safuwan on loan with his impressive performances during the training camp, both as a centre back and as a full-back during the club's two friendly matches in the UAE. In the friendly matches, he was pitted against several notable players, such as former Juventus striker Mirko Vučinić. He played as a substitute in the side's second friendly match with Ukrainian Premier League outfit FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, with the match concluding in a 1–1 result.

Safuwan made his debut for Melbourne City in the A-League on 7 February 2015 for the Melbourne Derby against Melbourne Victory. Safuwan scored his first goal for the club against Adelaide United on 27 February 2015.[16] He scored his second goal just a couple of weeks later, against Western Sydney Wanderers to hand his side a 1-0 lead although they could not hang onto the lead and crash to a 3–2 defeat in the end.[17]

Following a spine injury that he sustained in a competitive match against Wellington Phoenix, Safuwan's loan contract was allowed to lapse and was not renewed, despite earlier rumours stating that the club was interested in offering him a permanent contract.[18] After his release, Safuwan returned to play for the LionsXII in the 2015 Malaysia Super League season.

In July 2015, it was reported that there was interest from J.League club Yokohama F Marinos to sign Safuwan on loan for the rest of the season.[19] Although Safuwan stated that he was open to a second move overseas, even if it was on a short-term contract, the move ultimately did not materialise, and Safuwan remained with the LionsXII.

PDRM FA[edit]

Upon the dismissal of LionsXII from the Malaysia Super League following the end of the 2015 season, Safuwan was linked with multiple Malaysian and Thai football clubs upon noting his potential availability.[20] Safuwan signed a one-year loan deal with PDRM FA for the 2016 Malaysia Super League season.[21] The transfer fee was initially estimated as being about S$45,000,[22] but was found later to be closer to S$32,000. This deal was extended for a year despite PDRM FA's relegation into the Malaysian Premier League.[23]

Pahang FA[edit]

In 2018, Safuwan signed a contract with Malaysian Super League runners up Pahang FA and was presented alongside Malaysian forward, Norshahrul Idlan. He scored his first goal in a 2-1 victory against ATM FA in the 2018 Malaysia FA Cup. On 7 July 2018, he lifted his first silverware with his new club in a 2-0 victory against Selangor FA in the 2018 Malaysia FA Cup Final.

International career[edit]


Safuwan was part of the Singapore national under-23 football team that won the bronze medal at the 2009 and 2013 Southeast Asian Games.


Safuwan keeping the ball off Sebastian Giovinco of Juventus in a pre-season friendly on 16 August 2014

Safuwan made his international debut for Singapore at the age of 19 in a King's Cup match against Thailand on 17 January 2010.[4][24]

Safuwan contributed to Singapore's then-record fourth ASEAN Football Championship win in 2012. He found himself increasingly paired with Baihakki Khaizan as regular centre-back Daniel Bennett was gradually phased out of the national team set-up.

On 31 August 2017, Safuwan scored from the penalty spot to help Singapore snatch a draw against Hong Kong.[25]

He scored his first international hat-trick on 21 November 2018, helping Singapore to a 6-1 demolition of Timor-Leste in the 2018 AFF Championship.[26]

Singapore Selection[edit]

Apart from national team commitments, Safuwan was also part of the Singapore Selection XI squad on several occasions. The selected squad are made up of current Singapore international footballers, as well as players currently participating in the S.League. Safuwan has appeared in all four matches that the Singapore Selection XI has played thus far, such as in the Peter Lim Charity Cup match against 2013–14 La Liga champions Atlético Madrid,[27] a pre-season friendly match against Juventus,[28] as well as in the 2015 Barclays Asia Trophy held in Singapore at the National Stadium.[29]

Personal life[edit]

Safuwan is a close friend with fellow footballer, Aqhari Abdullah. Both of them became friends during their teenage years. though Aqhari rarely appeared. Safuwan is also a husband to stewardess, Alia Qistina, whom he married in 2013.[30] His father, Baharudin Abdul Ghani is a friend of Malaysia former national coach, Dollah Salleh. They grew up together in Singapore during their childhood days but stayed apart after Dollah moved to Malaysia.[31]

Career statistics[edit]


As of match played 21 July 2018[32][33][34][35][36]
Club Season S.League Singapore Cup Singapore
League Cup
Asia Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Young Lions 2009 15 1 0 0 0 0 15 1
2010 26 4 5 0 0 0 31 4
2011 16 4 16 4
Total 57 9 5 0 0 0 0 0 62 9
Club Season Malaysia
Super League
FA Cup
Malaysia Cup Asia Total
LionsXII 2012[37] 13 3 2 0 4 1 19 4
2013[38] 18 3 1 0 7 2 26 5
2014[39] 17 4 2 1 0 0 19 5
2015[40] TBC TBC TBC
Total 48 10 5 1 11 3 0 0 64 14
Club Season A-League FFA Cup Asia Total
Melbourne City (loan) 2014–15[41] 6 2 6 2
Total 6 2 6 2
Club Season Malaysia
Super League
FA Cup
Malaysia Cup Asia Total
PDRM 2016 16 3 4 1 8 3 28 8
2017 19 11 1 0 1 0 21 11
Total 35 14 5 1 8 3 0 0 49 19
Pahang 2018 19 2 6 1 0 0 25 3
Total 19 2 6 1 0 0 0 0 25 3
Career total 165 37 21 3 19 6 0 0 205 46
  • Young Lions and LionsXII are ineligible for qualification to AFC competitions in their respective leagues.


Scores and results list Singapore's goal tally first.[42]
No Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 1 February 2013 Bahrain National Stadium, Riffa, Bahrain  Bahrain 1–2 1–3 Friendly
2. 7 June 2013 New Laos National Stadium, Vientiane, Laos  Laos 3–0 5–2 Friendly
3. 17 November 2014 Yishun Stadium, Yishun, Singapore  Cambodia 4–2 4–2 Friendly
4. 11 June 2015 Phnom Penh Olympic Stadium, Phnom Penh, Cambodia  Cambodia 2–0 4–0 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification
5. 3–0
6. 17 November 2015 National Stadium, Kallang, Singapore  Syria 1–1 1–2 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification
7. 1 September 2016 Bahrain National Stadium, Riffa, Bahrain  Bahrain 1–1 1–3 Friendly
8. 31 August 2017 Jalan Besar Stadium, Kallang, Singapore  Hong Kong 1–1 1–1 Friendly
9. 21 November 2018 National Stadium, Kallang, Singapor  Timor-Leste 1–0 6–1 2018 AFF Championship
10. 2–1
11. 6–1
12. 10 September 2019 Jalan Besar Stadium, Kallang, Singapore  Palestine 2–1 2–1 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification




Pahang FA




  • 2014 Singapore Sports Awards: Meritorious Award
  • 2013 Goal Singapore Football Awards: Singapore Player of the Year
  • The Straits Times Athlete of the Year: 2013
  • 2012 ASEAN Football Championship Under-23 Player of the Tournament
  • 2012 ASEAN Football Championship Best XI
  • 2011 S.League People's Choice Award
  • 2015 Melbourne City Man of the Match vs Adelaide United


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  10. ^ Dan Guen Chin (24 October 2013). "Safuwan turns down T-Team offer". Today.
  11. ^ Wang Meng Meng (28 February 2014). "Footballer Safuwan Baharudin is the new Straits Times Athlete of the Year". The Straits Times.
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  13. ^ "Stunning second-half fightback salvages draw at Larkin". LionsXII. Retrieved 8 March 2014.
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  15. ^ "Football: Safuwan Baharudin signs for Melbourne City FC on loan". Channel News Asia. 29 January 2015. Archived from the original on 18 February 2015. Retrieved 18 February 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  16. ^ Channel News Asia (28 February 2015). "Safuwan wins Melbourne City FC Man of the Match award". Channel News Asia. Archived from the original on 8 March 2015. Retrieved 1 March 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  17. ^ Shanjayan Muniappan (11 March 2015). "Safuwan scores again, but Melbourne City lose". Today. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  18. ^ Melbourne City (24 April 2015). "Injured Safuwan Baharudin returns to Singapore". Melbourne City. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
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  20. ^ Tan, Kenneth (29 November 2015). "Safuwan mulling over Malaysia and Thailand moves | FourFourTwo". FourFourTwo. Retrieved 18 December 2015.
  21. ^ Vick, Vijhay (18 December 2015). "Safuwan makes the switch to Malaysia with PDRM | FourFourTwo". FourFourTwo. Retrieved 18 December 2015.
  22. ^ Ong, Justin (22 December 2015). "Football: Singapore star Safuwan Baharudin signs for Malaysian club PDRM - Channel NewsAsia". Channel NewsAsia. Retrieved 24 December 2015.
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  24. ^ Fabius Chen (20 December 2012). "Fitting farewell for Raddy". The Straits Times.
  25. ^ Meng Meng, Wang (31 August 2017). "Football: Late penalty gives Singapore 1-1 draw with Hong Kong". The Straits Times. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
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  27. ^ Tan, Kenneth. "Singapore Selection falls to valiant defeat against Atletico Madrid | The Football Association of Singapore". The Football Association of Singapore. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 5 October 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  28. ^ Siang Yee, Chua. "Football: Juventus beat Singapore Selection 5-0 in friendly at new National Stadium, Football News & Top Stories - The Straits Times". The Straits Times. Retrieved 5 October 2015.
  29. ^ "Singapore Select Barclays Asia Trophy Everton Arsenal Stoke City | Barclays Premier League". Barclays Premier League. Retrieved 5 October 2015.
  30. ^
  31. ^’s-friend-rival
  32. ^ "Safuwan Baharudin". National Football Teams. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  33. ^ "S.League – fixtures & scores". Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  34. ^ "Singapore Cup – fixtures & scores". Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  35. ^ "League Cup – fixtures & scores". Retrieved 14 April 2014.
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  38. ^ "LionsXII fixtures and results for 2013 season". LionsXII. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
  39. ^ "LionsXII fixtures and results for 2014 season". LionsXII. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
  40. ^ "LionsXII fixtures and results for 2015 season". LionsXII. Retrieved 28 November 2015.
  41. ^ "Melbourne City Fixtures and Results for 2014–15 season". Melbourne City. Retrieved 9 February 2015.
  42. ^ "Baharudin, Safuwan". National Football Teams. Retrieved 1 September 2017.

External links[edit]