Reactions in Singapore

Reds fans upbeat, City faithful rejoice

Left: Manchester City fans cheering their team on against Brighton at Thunderbird Sports Bistro. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR Below: Fans celebrating their team's first goal against Wolves during the official Liverpool Supporters Club in Singapore screeni
Manchester City fans cheering their team on against Brighton at Thunderbird Sports Bistro. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR
Left: Manchester City fans cheering their team on against Brighton at Thunderbird Sports Bistro. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR Below: Fans celebrating their team's first goal against Wolves during the official Liverpool Supporters Club in Singapore screeni
Fans celebrating their team's first goal against Wolves during the official Liverpool Supporters Club in Singapore screening at the Jubilee Ballroom at Four Points by Sheraton Singapore. ST PHOTO: KHALID BABA

There is a saying in football - "it's the hope that kills you" - but it certainly did not apply to the 300 Liverpool fans packed into the Jubilee Ballroom at Four Points by Sheraton Singapore as they prayed for a miracle.

They left at the end of the night not with the Premier League title they desperately craved but with renewed optimism that their team have what it takes to get it done next season.

Alan Chng, 45, secretary of the official Liverpool Supporters Club in Singapore, said: "No doubt, we're disappointed, but we're also encouraged by the good results we've got this season. With a charismatic manager (Jurgen Klopp) at the helm and, with supportive owners and the fans behind the team, we'll move on from this."

Before kick-off, the Reds fans knew everything depended on Manchester City's result at Brighton. No wonder a few had one eye on the large LED screens broadcasting their game against Wolves, and another on their smartphones keeping tabs on City's match.

And, for 21 minutes last night, that unlikely scenario played out.

The ballroom erupted when Sadio Mane put Liverpool in front and an even more raucous celebration followed when news trickled in that Glenn Murray had given Brighton the lead. "Blow the whistle now ref!", bellowed a Liverpool fan at the back of the room.

Laughter almost immediately gave way to groans after Sergio Aguero's equaliser, followed soon after by Aymeric Laporte's header which put City 2-1 ahead.

Over at the Thunderbird Bistro along Robertson Walk, about 30 City fans went through a gamut of emotions themselves, particularly in the first half.

Equity sales senior vice-president Vincent Ang, 55, who has supported the Citizens since 1977, said: "The match was nerve-wracking but I was confident. It's a new order and City will dominate for many more years to come, we have an awesome team."


Joy for Man City, heartbreak for Liverpool: Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (left) and Georginio Wijnaldum looking dejected despite a 2-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers at Anfield on the final day of the Premier League season yesterday. The Reds' 29-year wait for a league title continues as Manchester City came from behind to beat Brighton 4-1 to retain their title. City finished on 98 points, one more than Liverpool. Chelsea finished third and Tottenham fourth. PHOTO: REUTERS

This was City's fourth league title in eight seasons and Manchester native Dave Reade, 37, said the tables have turned on their fierce rivals Manchester United. The tennis coach led most of the chants last night and added: "Once you start supporting a team, you don't stop. There's no changing teams."

It was a sentiment shared by the Merseyside faithful inside the ballroom as they belted out You'll Never Walk Alone in the closing stages of the match.

David King, 37, a fan for 25 years, said: "This season, we've beaten Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Paris St Germain in the Champions League, and we achieved a record points tally. A lot of this squad is still young too, so I believe we are going to get there (and win the Premier League) eventually."

• Additional reporting by Christie Chiu and Renee Neo

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 13, 2019, with the headline 'Reds fans upbeat, City faithful rejoice'. Print Edition | Subscribe