Drum up hype over our footballers

When we think about the state of our S-League, the image that immediately comes to mind is the pathetic spectator numbers at stadiums during matches.

In the 1970s and early 1980s, local matches attracted good crowds.

But the fans were not there to cheer the teams - they went to matches to watch players like Arshad Khamis, S. Rajagopal, Dollah Kassim, Samad Allapitchay, Fandi Ahmad, Salim Moin, Razali Alias and Quah Kim Song.

They were drawn to the stars.

Perhaps the Football Association of Singapore should work with the media to generate more fan support now.

The newspapers could run weekly profiles on members of the S-League clubs and national team.

Perhaps there could also be write-ups on the players' spouses and families. This would enable fans to identify with the players.

Good colourful articles will attract more attention, help these players become household names and draw more fans.

Posters of S-League teams could also be displayed on notice boards in void decks on match days to reach the masses.

A successful domestic football league is a prerequisite for a strong national team.

A key contributing factor is a high level of spectator support.

A. Thiyaga Raju

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 02, 2017, with the headline 'Drum up hype over our footballers'. Print Edition | Subscribe