Liverpool head for Thailand and Singapore

Liverpool will play pre-season friendlies in Thailand and Singapore in July, the club announced on Wednesday. Rafael Benitez's side will face Thailand in Bangkok on 22 July before flying to Singapore to take on the national team on 26 July.

It will be the first time the Reds have visited Thailand since 2003, while they have not played in Singapore for eight years. "We have a fantastic group of fans in both Thailand and Singapore and it will be great to take the lads out there again," Benitez said.

Ian Ayre, Liverpool's commercial director, added: "South East Asia is clearly a key region for Liverpool. As we continue to develop our international plans, being able to allow fans all over the world to see the team live is paramount."

Mr. Makudi, president of the Thai Football Association, said they were eagerly anticipating the match.

"Liverpool's return to the kingdom is long overdue," he said. "The experience that our players will receive from this game will help in the development of Thai football."

Winston Lee, general secretary of the Football Association of Singapore, was also pleased to welcome back the Reds.

He said: "Inviting teams such as Liverpool, as well as Brazil and Australia last year, is part of our continued efforts to bring top-class football action to our shores. It will not only be a great experience for our fans but our players will get exposure to world-class teams and players."