Although the 2018 World Cup takes place in distant Russia, Singapore will be having its own “mini World Cup” at the Singapore United Football Fiesta (SUFF), an event supported by the Active Enabler Programme. The second edition of the SUFF will be held at the historic Jalan Besar Stadium on June 30th.
The fiesta, held for the first time during the Singapore Football Week last year, saw hundreds of players from various countries, including Malaysia, Brazil, and Japan, form teams with their fellow countrymen. Featuring so many different nationalities, the tournament was dubbed a “mini World Cup” by Shehzad Haque, founder of Singapore United.
Significantly, the idea for the event came from wanting to celebrate diversity around the world, especially given the fact that Singapore is one of the most cosmopolitan countries in the world. Moreover, the SUFF allows the different communities living, working and studying in Singapore to integrate through the universal game of football and appreciate their differences.
This year will see SUFF start off with a youth tournament where teams are encouraged to be multi-ethnic. At the same time, there will be a special Corporate tournament (the MultiNational Cup or MNC) where each 5-a-side team fielded by a company should comprise a mix of Singapore Citizens and foreign residents in its squad of 8 players. To make it as flexible as possible and to encourage teams to participate, Permanent Residents can be counted for either side.
The main event on the 30th will be the 'World Cup' Tournament which starts in the afternoon. Each team must be made up of players who are born in, a citizen of, or have at least one grandparent from the country they are competing for. More than 20 different countries comprising of the various communities residing in Singapore will be represented.
Like an actual World Cup, the tournament format will consist of a group stage leading to the knockout phase for those teams that progress. As 'host nation', Singapore will have one team in each of the 8 groups. In 2017, the inaugural SUFF champions were Singapore Knockout who lifted the trophy (or the Melting Pot as Haque jokingly refers to it) beating Portugal United in the final.
For the winners and runners up of each tournament, there are some great prizes on offer including spending vouchers from Harry's and Decathlon, tickets to the International Champions Cup (ICC) and AFF Suzuki Cup, and some free hours at the Home United Youth Football Academy, just to name a few. There are still places available for teams and that registration closes on June 27th. Interested parties can contact Ras at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 91546091.
Additionally, Singapore Young Lions & National Coach, Fandi Ahmad, will make an appearance at Jalan Besar Stadium to meet with fans during the event. Furthermore, in keeping with the aim of attracting one and all, the organisers are hoping to bring in non-football fans too by creating a carnival atmosphere with kiddie games, football skills challenges, local and international food, and a drinks bar. So family members and colleagues are encouraged to attend, support their team and have a great day out. Hopefully, each participating country will also encourage members of their respective community to come down and create that World Cup-type of atmosphere.
For Media enquiries or team registration, one can also contact Shehzad Haque at email@example.com or at 97375274.
For more information on Singapore United, please visit https://singaporeunited.wixsite.com/main or www.facebook.com/singaporeutd