FANS EXCITED TO SEE THEIR FAVOURITES
The fans, some of whom have been supporting the teams for decades, are grateful.
“They rarely come to Asia. I am just happy that they come in successive years,” said one fan who managed to get a banner signed.
Some fans even went the extra mile and camped overnight to get limited spots inside the hotel for a close encounter with the players.
Organisers said about a third of spectators have travelled to Singapore from overseas.
They include one traveller from Taiwan who was here with her seven-year-old son.
“Singapore is very close, it is very easy to get here. So we can bring our kids, fly here and see this international game,” she told CNA.
Mr Ho said that fans from neighbouring countries like Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia are also expected to attend the games.
But it is not just the fans who are cheering.
Some sports retailers have seen business improve on the back of the festival.
Premier Football’s general manager Chua Wee Lee said sales picked up in the last week, with Bayern Munich, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur fans buying jerseys and customising them.
When the teams come to Singapore, there is typically between a 25 and 50 per jump in sales, he said, adding that the size of the increase depends on which teams are involved.
“It does create that buzz. Not just in terms of business and sales, but also in terms of people coming and talking, all these conversations surrounding football,” he said.
With Singapore hosting top European clubs on their pre-season tours two years in a row, fans may now be expecting a hat-trick next year.
Mediacorp brings you pre-season football action from Jul 15 to Aug 6 as some of the biggest clubs take to the field in friendlies across Asia, Australia, Europe and the USA. Catch all these pre-season matches for free, live or on-demand on mewatch! Highlights will also be available on mewatch and Mediacorp’s Entertainment YouTube Channel.