Asian Cup – why Thailand beat Singapore

Thailand beat Singapore 3-1 last evening at the National Stadium in Singapore. In the first half, a nervous Singapore conceded a penalty. But in the second half, Singapore came back strongly and had several chances to at least equalise.

Many Singaporeans are ambivalent towards this so-called Singapore team that consists of many foreign imports. The stadium was not even half full.

If our soccer heroes of the past were playing at this level of international soccer, the stadium is guaranteed to have 60,000 screaming supporters.

It’s a bit harse to say this but many find it hard to emphatise with this Singapore team. Honestly, how many players can you name off the top of your head? I know there’s one Shah Alam, another called Duric or something. I know I’m not alone in this. Others I’ve spoken to are in a similar predicament.

Occasionally, I’d go to the Jalan Besar or National Stadium to watch a soccer match but the Singapore team just does not evoke the same passion as yesteryear’s team of Dollah Kassim (gelek king), Quah Kim Song, Mat Noh, Suriamurthy, Samad to name a few. Am I alone in feeling this way?

Look at the Thai team. Everyone is a Thai. No foreign imports. The same goes for other teams in the region.

When Vietnam beat Singapore last year in the AFF Cup, all their players were Vietnamese so I applauded their victory, and were happy for them. If they had won with foreign imports I’d have been cynical.

Even if Singapore had won last evening I’d not have felt any pride in the achievement. Indonesians I spoke to cynically referred to our foreign imports as a factor in the defeat of their national team in an AFF Tournament (Tiger Cup).

Some may argue that most countries rely on foreign imports. True, but not those in ASEAN.

It’s time we groomed our local talent, and built a truly Singapore national team and not a “rojak” (of different nationalities) team.


5 Responses to “Asian Cup – why Thailand beat Singapore”

  1. Let’s do a reality check. During the World Cup qualifiers which I assume are all local players, do we get trashed jialat jialat?

  2. Depends on how you define “thrashing”. Uzbekistan thrashed us 7-3. We won some and lost some. People are saying countries like Thailand has zero foreign imports and yet we struggle against them, and sometimes lose to them like yesterday’s match.

  3. In the WCQ, about half the Singapore team were FIP or foreign imported players..

  4. I see, I thought WC will have all local players, not sure for WCQ.

  5. 1) Singapore has a tiny population pool to choose our soccer players from. 2) The emphasis is towards economic survival so, 3) each child goes to school with mama and papa telling their child, “Don’t you be no soccer player or musician son. You’ve got to be a lawyer, doctor or accountant. That’s where the money is!”

    Honestly, Roger. Do you think you’d want to have a soccer player son? Or a musician son at that? I have been told many times I should spend my time going to the stock exchange downtown and make some money. Not blog or sing at concerts.

    A reality check indeed. Honestly, if I were a soccer maniac, I’d invest in a Mio SingTel box and watch Cable soccer stars in action. The ‘Kallang Roar’ is long gone! Like most of 60s music!

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