Excitement is reaching a crescendo in Singapore over the impending clash between Nigeria and Brazil at the Asian island country’s national stadium.
The chairman of Singapore Sports Hub, Bryn Jones disclosed that football fans in the country are thrilled that they will host two matches of very high international stature, as Brazil face Senegal at same venue three days before taking on Nigeria, with fans getting rare opportunities to see some of the world’s best players in action.
The game is expected to be a spectacle of massive crowd appeal considering that, when Brazil last played in Singapore five years ago, a sellout crowd of 51,577 turned out at the same arena, to see Neymar score all four goals in the five-time World Cup champion’s 4-0 win over Japan.
The South Americans, ranked second in the FIFA world rankings, will play Senegal (world No. 20) on October 10, before taking on three-time Africa Cup of Nations winners, Nigeria (33) three days later, in what would be the second ever clash between both countries at senior level and the first time they will tango on neutral ground, after the maiden clash in Abuja back in 2003.
In the first game between The Samba Boys and Nigeria’s Eagles, Brazil hit their hosts 3-0 in a tie that was organised to commemorate the opening of Abuja National Stadium in June 2003, about seven years after they clashed twice at under-23 level in the Olympic Games of Atlanta ’96, with the South Americans taking the group match but surprisingly lost the rematch in the semi-finals.
Brazil’s first clash of the impending tour, against Senegal, will see Roberto Firmino and Fabinho come up against their Liverpool teammate, Sadio Mane, with Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly also in action for the Africans, while the recognisable names to watch out for in the Nigeria match will include Everton midfielder, Alex Iwobi, Leicester City’s Wilfred Onhyinyen Ndidi, Villarreal winger, Samuel Chukwueze and Lille Metropole striker, Victor Osimhen.
Organisers put tickets on sale for both matches at 10am on September 19 at the official website spot www.sportshubtix.com, while stating that anyone who had purchased similar slots to watch Singapore versus Uzbekistan World Cup Qualifier on October 15 will be entitled to a 30 per cent discount on either one of the matches.
As expectations continue rising ahead of the October 13 game, a FIFA-badged referee from Singapore, Jansen Foo has been appointed to take charge of the high-profile international friendly between Nigeria and Brazil next Sunday, October 13 in Singapore.
Foo will be assisted by compatriots Abdul Hannan (assistant referee 1), Ong Chai Lee (assistant referee 2) and G. Letchman (fourth official) at the game billed for Singapore National Stadium, Kallang starting 8pm local time, which should be midday in Nigeria.
Jones said: “We are thrilled to host two matches of such international stature at our iconic National Stadium. This Brazil versus Senegal and Nigeria will be a treat for all football fans to catch some of the world’s most skillful players in action.”