The Singapore Sports Hub Festival of Football excitement reached fever pitch as approximately 4,500 visitors erupted in collective euphoria over France’s 4-2 victory against Croatia, totaling the attendance for the World Cup screenings at the event to more than 65,000 over the past month. Visitors also witnessed the climax of the 2018 Ultimate Football Family contest, where five families pit themselves against one another for the title of the most ardent football family. Ms. Nur Fazeela bte Hairil Basar and her family were eventually crowned the 2018 Ultimate Football Family, after emerging victorious in a series of fun challenges that included quizzes, face painting, and the search for the most creative football chant. The contest was held in collaboration with the 2018 International Champions Cup (ICC), to reward the most die-hard football family with flights and accommodation covered, to watch Arsenal play against Huddersfield at the Emirates Stadium in December this year.
Apart from live football screenings, over 50,000 fans and enthusiasts of football descended in droves from across the island to participate in 4V4 football tournaments, daily football friendlies, penalty shootout games, meet-and-greets with football heroes and other football-themed community activities. The festival also drew international football personalities such as Roman Weidenfeller, Neil Humphreys and John Dykes who joined in the football celebration with the community. Fans of local football also got to catch Singapore Premier League action in the form of Hougang United’s match-up with Brunei DPMM, as well as the Young Lions clash against Home United FC.
Mr. Oon Jin Teik, Chief Executive Officer of the Singapore Sports Hub, said, “The strong multi-partnership collaboration between Singapore Sports Hub and its strategic event partners, Sport Singapore, Singapore Tourism Board, National Youth Council, International Champions Cup, Football Association of Singapore, and Starhub have made the festival more colourful and dazzling. Many friendships are forged through this festival of football as many local and international pals returned to Sports Hub for the beautiful game on many different nights. Such deep fan engagement is what we cherish most.”
Ms. Nur Fazeela, the winner of the 2018 Ultimate Football Family, said, “This festival is a family-friendly event for all who love sports to come together. We got to meet other families here who are into the sport and we hope Sports Hub organises more of such events, not only to support the growth of football but other sports as well.”
Mr. Patrick Ang, the runner-up of the Ultimate Football Family contest, said, “We all had fun, and that is the most important thing. The event is successful in encouraging families to bond, and in bringing out the kampung spirit through programmes such as the 4v4 friendlies.”
With the screening of the World Cup final this weekend, it is only half-time at the Festival of Football. The festival heats up in the second half with the highly-anticipated International Champions Cup featuring top European clubs, Arsenal, Atlético de Madrid, and Paris St-Germain, who will be competing against each other at the National Stadium on 26, 28 and 30 July. Singapore is Asia’s only stop for the ICC.