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[Book Review] - Trailblazing Currie opened Doors to Asia for Zico, Ronaldo

It did not take me long to hit the button when I came across the autobiography of Derek Currie - "When ‘Jesus’ Came to Hong Kong: The remarkable story of the first European football star in Asia" on Amazon after I read about the publishing of it months before. LURE TO HONG KONG BECAUSE OF PELE In 1970, Currie signed for Ian Petrie 's Hong Kong Rangers alongside fellow Scots Jackie Trainer and Walter Gerrard with the promise of facing the great Pele in months to come when Santos going to visit the then British crown colony. Derek Currie (left) with the legendary Pele  The signing of the Scottish trio on professional basis by a Hong Kong club, let alone an Asian club, was unheard of in this part of the world during that era and it was no wonder their arrival at the old Kai Tak Airport caused a bit of media frenzy. In spite of Hong Kong's diminutive size, it has always fascinated me how Hong Kong football was the first to have a professional football league in Asia (

[Book Review] - Why You Must Know Who "UNCLE CHOO" Was!

The biography of "Uncle" Choo Seng Quee I was thrilled when I first came across the Facebook group posting by Reynold Godwin Pereira on his plan to write a book about Choo Seng Quee, the late legendary Singapore football coach whose name still awes everyone by merely mentioning his moniker "Uncle Choo". After all, we are talking about an individual who, through his no-nonsense, tough disciplinary methods, uplifted game standards not just in Singapore, but also in Malaysia and Indonesia. PRESERVE UNCLE CHOO MEMORIES BEFORE THEY'RE GONE A biography like this one came just at the right time to inform the current young generation of the great things the man did before all those memories would fade away after the passing of one generation. With "Uncle Choo" passing away in 1983, Pereira had to rely on the accounts shared with him by those who knew him, including players who trained under him and became national players like Quah Kim Song , etc. The book aut

Singapore's 1987 "Malaysia Cup" Squad

This souvenir program Alas, how time flies – 1987 was the year this handbook was published by the Football Association of Singapore (FAS), and to serve as a guide to Singapore's Malaysia Cup campaign that year. It was given to me by an aunt of mine more than 30 years ago when I was a primary school kid. I remember the idea behind the original blog post before repurposed to this present form was because I was asked by a friend if I got pictures featuring Singapore national team from the yesteryears. A sense of nostalgic sentiment flows as I flipped through the pages and was pretty shocked to see Fandi Ahmad playing against us (only to realize that he was earning a living as a professional footballer turning out for Federal Territory (FT) later Kuala Lumpur FA). The Lions of 1987 The centerfold of the souvenir magazine is the team photo taken at the old National Stadium. Mr Wong Kan Seng's message Former Deputy Prime Minister Wong Kan Seng was the then Minister for Community Dev

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A book not to be missed  Good day to all,  I would like to recommend you this book - the autobiography of Mr. Quah Kim Song, the former national striker in the 1970s.⠀ For those who know the background of Mr. Quah, I think I shan't dwell on that part, and for those who don't know who Mr. Quah was, please head to the nearest library to loan and read it. If anyone wants to know more about the history of the local football and those swinging days of the 1970s aka the "Kallang Roar" era, this is the book to read. But there is one chapter in which Mr. Quah detailed his NSF days and it is something noteworthy as it explained how he juggled his fledgling football career with his citizenry obligations. Do have a read of that chapter, since there is now an ongoing discussion about sportsmen serving their NS and see how the SAFSA can be revived to help in this cause.  That is the short update of the day. Till then, stay safe and healthy and don't gather in numbers ❌ Thank y

Book Review: Living The Dream ... Or Enduring The Nightmare?

The cover of the book  In short, to summarize my thoughts after reading this book is - thou shall not treat a football club neither as a toy nor as a money spinner. FAILURE TO ACKNOWLEDGE Citing two similar cases which were studied by author Bob Holmes - Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers, it is not difficult to tell how foreign owners of these two clubs made a grave mistake for not to appreciate both are not merely football clubs but being a significant heritage and indispensable part of the community fabric of the vicinity where they are based. When both Al-Hasawis and Venkys paraded themselves to supporters of Forest and Rovers respectively after they bought the clubs, many promises were made to lift their teams out of the doldrums with some seems way beyond their means to deliver those dreams like the audacious bid to land Brazilian superstar Ronaldinho to Ewood Park in 2010. One of Mrs Desai's famous quotes after took over Blackburn Rovers  A few pages into

Book Review: "Football Planet: from Brazil to Afghan"

Today, this blog is featuring a new book - "Planeta do Futebol: do Brasil a fronteira afega"("Football Planet: from Brazil to Afghan" in English, pictured above) written Brazilian football journalist Renato Andreรฃo Renato, as you can remember, was the kind gentleman who conducted my email interview with S.League legend Egmar Goncalves on my behalf, way back in January 2009. In this book, Renato had written 12 pages on Singapore football (pictured above) with transcripts from interviews he conducted with national coach Raddy Avramovic, SAFFC coach Richard Bok and players such as Ahmad Latiff Khamarudin, Noh Alam Shah, as well as input from former players such as S Subramani and ex-Home United coach Steve Darby. Wide range of topics were discussed in the Singapore section with topics such as players' views on the Lions' performance in the international tournaments, such as the Asian Cup qualifiers, the Suzuki Cup and what coach Darby demanded from Egmar in t

Book Review: "Forza Italia"

I'm not sure should I start a new label that entitled "Book Review", having read one book on Japanese football weeks ago, I happened to come across another excellent book - FORZA ITALIA at Bishan Library , not that long ago. I picked up this book from the "dump box" where readers decided to "back out" their choice(s), I'm pretty sure they regretted for not reading this book by freelance journalist Paddy Agnew. Written by Irishman Agnew, whom with his family been living in Italy for the past 20 odd years. In this book, Agnew detailed the rise and fall of Diego Maradona while playing for Napoli, how AC Milan was served as a launchpad that kicked start the political career of its owner Silvio Berlusconi . Other topics covered in this book included: The infamous Juventus doping scandal in late 90s Why dictator Mussolini was credited as the "founder" of Serie A The "fan power" that wrecked the game in Italy and etc... Since the sea

Book Review : "Japanese Rules: Japan and the Beautiful Game"

I would like to recommend a book, yes! And it's a "textbook" to be precise. Not sure how you guys thought about it. Nay... not those published by the Ministry of Education. But the one as illustrated above. In short, it traced the conceiving to the launch and the wanning of hype of the J-League, plus insights in areas such as administration, players recruiting/developing, generate publicity, creating awareness, fans participating and etc. Not only that, it also explained why the game of football is seen as a tool to break away from the core traditional Japanese values that have been dominating all aspects of their life. This should served as a useful reference to all involved in Singapore soccer, who might still remained clueless, how to run the game. Yes! You may argue that the background and setting are different from ours but bear that in mind - Football was completely an "alien" game prior the introduction of the J-League. Isn't it sad that for us, who