photo from zimbio.com
For Singapore futbol supporters, Lion City Cup is nothing new. In fact, this is an U-16 tournament, starring International teams, which has been around with 34 years of history. Lion City Cup started in year 1977 as the world first U-16 tournament and eventually helped with the creation of the World Youth U-17 Championship which was held in China in year 1985.
This annual U-16 tournament unearthed many futbol talents in Singapore, such as Fandi Ahmad in the 70s, Indra Shadan in the 90s and Adam Swandi in the current time zone. I was one of the supporters flocking to the old Jalan Besar Stadium in the 90s trying to witness the unearthing of futbol talents. Back then, other than our Singapore U-15 and U-16 teams, we played teams like AIK Stockholm U-16 (Sweden), Pahang U-16 (Malaysia), Perth U-16 (Australia), HongKong U-16 and even South Korea U-16.
As we announced the arrival of modern futbol in the new 21st century, teams like Juventus U-15 (Italy), Flamengo U-15 (Brazil), Newcastle and Everton U-15 (England) graced the tournament for the first time last year! All thanks to the main organizer, Red Card, we will be watching some of the world’s best U-15 players from Manchester City (England), Ajax Amsterdam (Netherlands), Boca Juniors (Argentina), Porto (Portugal) and of course our very own Singapore U-15 and U-16 teams!
Flamengo in training last year
How excited can that be! I was involved in the last episode of the Canon Lions City Cup as a coach trainee. Not only I was able to catch how the Singapore teams trained, I managed to learn from the Brazilian’s training too. By watching the youngsters’ play, it did motivate me to do more for futbol!
So guys, mark these dates down on your calendar, 23 June - 1 July 2012, Jalan Besar Stadium (Singapore). Do join us in Singapore to catch some of the world’s best youngsters in action! And you know what, some of them will be representing their countries at the highest level! Mark my word.
For more information, please log on to www.lioncitycup.com
21 April 2012 READ MORE >
These days, I have been interacting with street futbol and freestylers a lot more than before. As a matter of fact, I am slowly picking up their tricks steadily… on paper. Recently, I was invited to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, for an exclusive interview with Street Legends’ Jermaine Vanenburg and Ricardo Pinto. Other than the famous duo, there was another group which captured my attention - Soccer Freestylerz Asia - Indonesia & Malaysia.
Soccer Freestylerz Asia - Indonesia & Malaysia (shall give them a nick for easy writing - SFAIM), was a group which was brought together and trained in Malaysia. Never mind the different background of the freestylers’, this bunch of players were young and full of passion for futbol freestyling! Among them, the youngest was only 14yrs old and he could manage an almost impossible trick with 1 ball on the back of his neck while juggling another with his feet! We are talking about 2 balls here, dude! Another younge gentlemen who caught my attention is 21yrs old ipank! His control was amazing!
Well, I always believe that if you put in effort and time for the game which you love, the result will come naturally. SFAIM has all the time in the world to be one of the greatest here in the region. Based on what I have seen in Kuala Lumpur, their synchronized-movement cum dancing with the balls was creative, and if they were given ample time and practice, their near professional performance will be even nearer to perfection.
Most importantly, while chasing your dream, young chaps have to realize what’s right and what’s wrong. There is no point in achieving success at the expense of damaging your own and others’ health. During that short stay of mine in Kuala Lumpur, I saw young players displaying great footwork at the futsal court but the next moment, the same group of young players were smoking away which I am unable to accept! Luckily, I did not see that happening to SFAIM.
So while I’m writing about SFAIM here, probably they are busy training with their Monta’s sponsored balls vigorously, getting ready for their next performance. Across the causeway, here in Singapore, I wish SFAIM all the best of luck in futbol freestyling, who knows I could be seeing them performing in some of the region’s biggest stages! Selamat Berhasil!