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Sports

Shamir Osman
Sunday, Aug 17, 2014

Sports

Stadium could stage Pool-Man United clash

The New Paper | Shamir Osman | Sunday, Aug 17, 2014

The Singapore Selection side created history when they became the first football team to train at the new National Stadium.

Juventus will line up for the first football game at the National Stadium tomorrow, and the crown jewel of the $1.33 billion Singapore Sports Hub will also welcome Brazil's samba boys and Asia's No. 1 side, Japan, next month.

And football fever at the Hub could reach dangerously exciting levels next year, with sources revealing that Singapore is bidding to stage English football's greatest rivalry - a clash between Liverpool and Manchester United.

While he did not give any confirmation, Sports Hub chief executive Philippe Collin Delavaud revealed yesterday that they are working on bringing English teams here next year.

When asked if Liverpool could face United here, he said: "We are definitely considering this, but at the moment, nothing is confirmed yet."

The Anfield giants and United have played friendlies here before against the national team and a similar arrangement is also a possibility.

Liverpool and United, the Premier League era's most successful team, are the two most supported teams in the Republic and, if the clash should happen here, it is certain to raise temperatures among fans, even if the match will be a friendly.

Revival

After several years of league obscurity, a resurgent Liverpool finished second behind Manchester City in the Premier League last season.

United suffered last season, eventually finishing in seventh spot in a disastrous defence of the title. But, with Dutch master Louis van Gaal newly installed as manager, there are positive vibes coming out of Old Trafford once again.

Singapore will celebrate its 50th year of independence in 2015 and excitement is already building over what promises to be 12 months of fun and excitement.

The National Day Parade will be held at the Padang next year but, before that, the country will hold its first South-east Asia Games in 22 years in June.

The glamour football friendly between two of the biggest clubs in England could be scheduled in July - a time when European sides get into their pre-season swing with tours around the globe.

"The NDP (National Day Parade) will not be at the stadium next year, and we will take the opportunity to organise in July this type of EPL (English Premier League) game," said Delavaud, speaking to TNP last night on the sidelines of the pre-match press conference by Juventus and the Singapore Selection.

"Again, nothing is decided but there is a real opportunity for next year."

samiro@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on August 15, 2014.
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