‘Unforgettable’ experience for young Liverpool fans as Reds beat Crystal Palace in Singapore
Close to 51,000 spectators were in attendance at the National Stadium to catch the Reds.
The National Stadium of Singapore was flooded with a sea of red on Friday (Jul 15) as Liverpool faced off against Crystal Palace in the Standard Chartered Singapore Trophy 2022.
With 50,720 fans in attendance, the game saw the two Premier League teams battle it out in an enthralling game, with the Reds eventually claiming a convincing 2-0 victory over the Eagles.
Liverpool took an early lead at the 12th-minute mark as captain Jordan Henderson found the back of the net after receiving Harvey Ellliot’s cut back from the right flank.
Mohamed Salah later doubled the Red’s lead in the 47th minute of the game, just moments after he came on as a substitute to replace Colombian winger Luis Diaz.
Crystal Palace also had a handful of goal-scoring opportunities, including a close-range header by French forward Odsonne Edouard that was eventually saved by Liverpool goalkeeper Adrian.
The Liverpool open training session which took place the day before the game also saw a huge turnout, with 12,000 fans in attendance to see the Reds in action.
From end-to-end action during the game, to fantastic displays of skills during the training session, Liverpool’s pre-season campaign was undeniably an unforgettable experience for fans in Singapore.
A unique experience
Given that Liverpool’s last time in Singapore was over a decade ago, the Red’s visit to the National Stadium this year was undeniably a memorable experience for some youths.
Among them is 20-year-old Javen Teo, who saw the Liverpool team in person for the very first time during the open training session.
He shared: “The last time Liverpool came, I was still quite young so my parents didn’t allow me to go for the game. Now, it’s a whole different team, and I think this team is very special in a sense that they are one of the best Liverpool teams ever.
“I think it’s quite surreal, because you always see them on TV, and when the players are right in front of you it just feels out of this world.”
Eighteen-year-old Nabil Rasheed similarly expressed how watching Liverpool play live was a completely different experience as compared to seeing them through a screen. On top of that, it also provided a new perspective to him as a fan of the club.
“As I was watching the game, I realised that you kind of scrutinise them a bit more compared to when you watch it on a screen because you feel they should have done this or that.
“But I think when you see it in real life, it opens up a whole new perspective as you really respect the hustle that they put into it because you can really see how lethargic they can get at the end after all that hard work on the pitch.”
Seeing idols in the flesh
The Liverpool team came to Singapore with a squad that featured 32 players consisting of some of its youngsters, new signings, and even starting eleven players.
While the Reds may have come to Singapore with a relatively large squad, some youths shared that they were excited to see a select few of the team’s players.
Shakeel Shah, 16, Muhammad Luqman, 17, and Jerald Sim, 18, were star-struck as they caught the Liverpool defenders in action.
Shakeel, who plays as a centre back for his amateur team, could not hide his excitement as he saw Virgil Van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate during the open training session.
He said: “Seeing them in person makes me feel really mesmerised because I always see them on TV, not in real life. It really made my day, or even my year.”
“My favourite moment was when I saw Konate score a goal. It was really unexpected because he just ran up and he scored a goal. It really made me happy because it’s a centre back who scored, and I want to try and replicate it the next time I play.”
For Luqman – who plays in the same team as Shakeel as a left-back – the player he was most excited to see during the training was, unsurprisingly, Andrew Robertson.
He shared: “I was really looking forward to seeing Andrew Robertson because I play as a left back for my club. I always see the way that Robertson plays and try my best to implement it whenever I play. He gives me more motivation to play football.”
As for Jerald, Liverpool’s right back and academy product Trent Alexander-Arnold was the player which he was most excited to see.
He said: “After I saw how Trent climbed up the ranks to claim his position as a starting right back for Liverpool, I started to watch videos and highlights of him, especially those that showcase his amazing crossing as I hope to be like him in the future.”
Spectator Muhammad Aqmal, 16, also stated how he was particularly excited to see winger Harvey Elliot in action, especially since he believes that the Englishman will be “better than Mohamed Salah” in the future.
From fans singing along to Richard Rogers You’ll Never Walk Alone, to the entire crowd of 50,720 spectators taking part in the iconic Kallang Wave, there was never a dull moment in the stadium as the crowd kept the energy levels high throughout the 90 minutes of the game. At times, it felt like the National Stadium turned into Anfield, with the only difference being the humid Singapore weather.
For 18-year-old spectator Nygel Goh, the atmosphere made him reminisce about the time he visited the Wembley Stadium in London a few years ago.
He said: “The atmosphere was electrifying… In Singapore, it’s quite rare to have such an amazing atmosphere, so it was really an amazing experience.”
Gareth, 18, also shared how being part of the live crowd was a phenomenal feeling. As he only recently got into football and started supporting Liverpool, being able to watch the game was also a huge treat for him.
He shared: “The atmosphere was incredible. Since I got into football, I’ve always wanted to be able to experience a real life football match with all the fans cheering. I’m really happy that I got to experience this, especially since these opportunities don’t come about so easily.”
Nineteen-year-old spectator Antoine Kwok added that the atmosphere at the game was also very unique, and felt like “once in a lifetime experience.”
He added: “The atmosphere that was created here by all these Singaporean Liverpool fans was definitely amazing and it’s something that you can never experience behind the screen and only in real life.
“It’s an unforgettable feeling that I can safely say will stay etched in my mind forever.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp also expressed his appreciation towards the Singaporean fans during the post-match press conference, calling his experience in the country as “top class from start to finish.”
He said: “…it was absolutely great and this city is beautiful. My first impression was absolutely outstanding and this won’t be the last time I come here.”