Fresh start: The 'untapped talent' in Singapore football
When you think football, which team and brand do you first think of and why?
Manchester United and adidas. I support Man U and adidas is their current apparel partner.
When someone says Singapore football, what comes to mind?
Untapped talent. I think that for a country of five million people, where football is one of the dominant popular sports played, especially amongst males, we should be performing a lot better.
I know everyone has their opinions on this topic and while it’s always easy to point fingers at players and coaches, I personally believe that it goes beyond that and that it takes a mindset and cultural shift for there to be any significant progress.
If Singapore genuinely wants to improve its football (and other sports), there needs to be a clear priority on it, starting with recognising the priority and then making the necessary changes to infrastructure and programs, and to educate and to train the population from young.
There needs to be proper teaching of fundamental motor skills from a young age. I look at our footballers and I believe that they are committed and talented. But there’s only so far an individual can go on his own merit.
Which football team do you support and why?
Manchester United. Eric Cantona’s cockiness and Ryan Giggs flair (who can forget "Ryan Giggs Soccer Skills") wowed me when I was a schoolboy.
The team had a certain confidence and swashbuckling style. Furthermore, with a name like The Red Devils, what more can one ask for?
What are your expectations of your favourite team this season and is the coach the right manager?
To build a strong base and steady the ship. It has been a shaky few seasons after the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson and they now need some time to rebuild again and get good momentum going.
The right coach is important for that but he needs to be given time. Constant chopping and changing of the coach probably doesn’t help a team settle in either.
I think Mourinho is a good choice - he’s got a good record. Now it just remains to be seen if he has the midas touch for the team. It took Sir Alex Ferguson four years to win his first trophy with Man United and six years to finally win the league.
Which set of opposing fans do you hate the most?
Hate isn’t the right word here. But I do enjoy having a bit of banter with friends who are Liverpool fans.
What is your preferred adidas football/futsal footwear choice and which line of shoes?
I like the COPA and ACE boots range.
How does football fit into your busy life?
I play turf football every Tuesday night with a mix bunch of friends. We have guys who are still studying all the way up to in their 50s.
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