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FAS faces criticism after children barred from bringing Lions support poster to stadium

The Football Association of Singapore faced backlash from local fans when security barred two children from bringing a poster supporting the national football team into the National Stadium during the Singapore vs South Korea match on 6 June. Despite explanations, concerns were raised over how certain fans were able to smuggle in larger posters despite size restrictions. FAS expressed being “touched” by the kids’ passion and proposed arranging a special experience for them to meet the Lions in person.

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SINGAPORE:  The Football Association of Singapore (FAS) recently faced criticism from local football fans after two children were stopped by security personnel from bringing a poster supporting Singapore’s national football team into the National Stadium on 6 June.

Last Friday, TMSG, a sports, entertainment, and lifestyle blog, highlighted that the children’s father, who was not named, was unhappy that “stadium security made us throw it away at the entrance,”

“Poor kids were in tears. Didn’t expect such idiocy to ruin their first matchday experience at Sports Hub,” the father said, criticizing the restriction as “doing a good job of killing both the atmosphere and Singapore football.”

He added that the incident left a sour taste as “my kids were watching the national team at the Sports Hub for the first time ever.”

TMSG then drew a stark contrast by noting on its Facebook page that a female fan was able to bring in a similarly sized poster in support of South Korea national football team captain and Tottenham Hotspur star Son Heung-min.

KASM and FAS: Kids’ poster supporting Lions team blocked for exceeding size limit

In response, Kallang Alive Sport Management (KASM), which manages the Singapore Sports Hub, and FAS stated on Sunday that the poster was larger than A3 and therefore did not meet entry conditions.

“Save for prior approved exceptions, our current rules do not allow signs or posters that are larger than A3 in size as large posters, when held up, may obstruct the view of fans behind,” they added in a statement to Singapore’s state media CNA.

KASM and FAS confirmed that the poster was larger than A3, and security personnel, trained to enforce this rule, had to disallow it as it did not meet entry conditions.

“This and other conditions of entry were made known to fans in advance of event day via an online event guide, event listings and an email to all ticket holders.”

KASM and FAS emphasized that the entry conditions apply to all football matches held at the National Stadium to ensure a positive fan experience and public safety.

“This includes a list of items which are not allowed inside the stadium for all football matches. ”

“These rules take reference from international guidelines set by FIFA and are benchmarked with stadiums internationally.”

“The Singapore Sports Hub and FAS are committed to providing a safe, memorable, and enjoyable experience for all football fans at the National Stadium.”

Acknowledging oversight in security checks for Korean Fans’ poster

KASM and FAS acknowledged that these checks “may not always be 100 per cent accurate, particularly when signs are folded and brought into the stadium in bags.”

“This was likely the case for the Korean fan. We will work with our security team and strive to do better.”

Regarding the two Singaporean children, KASM and FAS said they were “touched by their passion.”

“By preparing a poster to cheer our players, they truly embody the spirit of young Singaporeans who support our athletes through thick and thin,” they added.

“We appreciate this support and invite them to reach out to us so that we can arrange a special experience for them to meet the Lions in person.”

On 6 June, South Korea delivered a football masterclass, dominating Singapore with a resounding 7-0 victory in the World Cup qualifier held at the Singapore National Stadium.

Singapore, who have one point from five matches, will next face Thailand in an away clash in Bangkok on Tuesday.

Criticism and questions arise over stadium policies

The setback faced by the children has indeed sparked criticism within the Singaporean community. Some netizens have taken to social media to question the necessity of such stringent measures and the apparent oversight and double standards that allowed Korean fans to bring oversized posters into the stadium.

Despite explanations provided by KASM and FAS, TMSG pointed out that there were additional instances of oversized posters from Korean fans observed by attendees at the June 6 match.

One netizen, commenting on CNA’s Facebook post, criticized the Sports Hub’s handling of events. He expressed concern that the Sports Hub seemed to prioritize marketing its facilities over supporting the national team and lamented the impact of this business-minded approach on the sports scene, particularly for Singaporean children who are deprived of a genuine sporting experience.

Another netizen expressed frustration with the bureaucratic procedures and strict protocols in place, suggesting that such concerns become less relevant after a significant defeat like the 7-0 loss, which ultimately results in elimination from the competition.

A comment shared observations regarding security checks at the National Stadium based on personal experiences attending events there. The netizen noted that the focus of bag checks primarily centred around inspecting food and drinks, with little attention given to other items such as folded posters.

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Ruling government: Why does nobody in Singapore care about our local teams?

Also the Ruling government: Let’s put arbitrary restrictions on how you can support our local sports team!

Now these children have learned first-hand what government tyranny looks like. Though I hope the parents understand too, because they are the ones with the ability to vote.

I found it unbelievable, strange the actions of authorities. Apparently they are blind, ignorant, stupid or just dictatorial? How do they decide what the kids were up to? Couldn’t the kids be supporting, the sport of football itself? Or the authorities decide they are UP TO DISTURBANCES or Mischief? Or can’t the authorities permit the kids to let go off their wild emotions they have on their football player idols? What the authorities did was to KILL off any semblnlance of memory one has relating to the lies of World Cup SA 2010 of PAP so forget fully a PM… Read more »

2 sets of laws at play…

Last edited 10 days ago by W.A.J.

Pathetic and an absolute killjoy !!!

A little leeway wouldn’t have hurt, … allowing entry and pointing out, not to exceed permitted dimensions, for next time.

It was a child after all, … supporting his/her team.

Everybody would’ve been happy, but no, …rules are rules and it’ll be fastidiously enforced as demonstrated !!!

Pathetic and an absolute killjoy !!!

Looks quite clearly the spirit of National Unity, National cry, even AMONGST children is DENIED and DISTASTED by PAP Administration Politicians.

Then WT big F to coerce 100s of 1000s of children to Memorise RECITE DAILY, the STINKO schools pledge is FOR?

Wayang wayang wayang – trademark of Stinkgapore’s Dragon Lady.

On a bigger STAGE – this prevention appears
as another act of establishing ONLY a Pro PAP Sheepgapore, NOT a pro SG Singapore.

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