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When lions all been tamed

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Where was the noise, Lions fans?
December 22, 2008 Monday, 07:14 AM
By Terrence Voon

AS THE Lions sank to an unlikely semi-final defeat in the AFF Suzuki Cup against Vietnam last night, it wasn’t just the strikers who disappointed.

The famous Kallang Roar, which has reduced many a visiting player to a quivering bundle of nerves, had inexplicably gone missing.

Yes, a staggering 48,000 fans had made the trip to the National Stadium, but their sheer number only made the silence more galling.

Where was the stamping of feet, the incessant catcalls, the non-stop cheers?

Where was the noise, Lions fans?

“It was as if they were watching a movie,” said one official after the game. “We’re glad that so many fans came, but the level of noise still can’t match the Malaysia Cup days.”

Indeed, the likes of Fandi Ahmad and Quah Kim Song would have found the atmosphere last night slightly alien.

Older fans will remember that Kallang was a fortress, not just on the pitch, but in the terraces. Players drew an extra yard, and extra ounce from strength, from the sheer passion emanating from the stands.

No air horns and inflatable clappers were required in those halcyon days, when enough sound was generated to shake the very foundations of the stadium.

Ironically, it all started so well last night, as the pre-match national anthem was belted out with so much gusto that goosebumps appeared on many a journalist’s arm in the press room.

But as the match went on, it was as if someone had pressed the mute button.

The cheering became sporadic, reaching audible heights only Singapore came close to scoring.

Even the Kallang Wave made only a few half-hearted rounds, before it finally died a natural death.

In the end, it was the 3,000 Vietnamese fans who nearly stole the show, with their non-stop songs and chants overpowering the vast majority of home fans.

Of course, not everyone took that lying down. There were pockets of Singapore die-hards scattered around the stadium, giving their lungs a good go, but they were chasing a lost cause.

It would be unfair to expect Singapore fans to match their English counterparts, whose wide repertoire of football songs and hymns are put on rewind for nearly all of the 90 minutes.

But a little more passion wouldn’t have hurt, especially when the chips are down and our boys on the pitch desperately needed a little more inspiration.

Surely we’re not a bunch supporters who only sing when we’re winning?

Well, lions may fear none but we Vietnamese know how to tame and shut the roaring right there in their home ground.


Written by tristhefall

December 22, 2008 at 8:04 am

Posted in Common

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