Working under the radar till recently, French side Etoile FC have pipped Yishun Super Reds and Chinese side Beijing Guoan to claim the first of two available S-League slots for the 2010 season.

The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) told R Sasikumar, a consultant for Etoile FC, the good news on Friday and the former Lion was delighted. “It’s fantastic, especially considering that we managed to put this together in such a short time, it’ll be the first time ever that a European team plays in an Asian league,” Sasikumar told MediaCorp last night.

“The players are still in Lyon, but they will arrive in Singapore on Jan 24. They are going through their medical and working out final contract details, important issues that we want to sort out before they get on the plane,” added Sasikumar.

Their name means star in French, and Etoile FC the first European team to ply their trade in Singapore’s professional league, look to bring star quality with them.

Former Cameroon international Lucien Mettomo will bring his experience from Manchester City, Southampton and Kaiserslautern, if he does agree terms.

Former Newcastle United and French star David Ginola will also add to the draw of the French side, in his role as club ambassador.

“Hopefully, we can bring Ginola here for Etoile’s first game of the season,” added Sasikumar.

Etoile become the eighth foreign team to compete in the S-League after Sinchi FC (2003), Albirex Niigata (2004), Sporting Afrique (2006), Liaoning Guangyuan and Super Reds (both 2007), Dalian Shide (2008) and DPMM (2009).

The FAS will decide between Yishun Super Reds and Beijing Guoan for the final league spot in the next few days.