Merlion Cup

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Merlion Cup
Founded1982
Abolished2009
Last championsEngland Liverpool F.C
(1st title)
Most successful team(s) Australia
(2 titles)

The Merlion Cup was an invitational football tournament that was held in Singapore annually from 1982-1986, in 1992 and in 2009. Participants included full national sides, Olympic sides, Invitational XI's and club teams. After the 1986 tournament, four Canadian players (Igor Vrablic, Hector Marinaro, David Norman and Chris Chueden) were suspended after a match-fixing scandal.

History[edit]

The inaugural Merlion Cup was held in 1982 and was held annually until 1986. The tournament was not held in 1987 due to financial constraints and the planned tournament would have scheduling conflict with the Malaysia Cup. The 1986 edition experienced the worst match attendance since the tournament's inaugural edition in 1982 with only 12,000 people showed up to watch the final between China and North Korea.[1] Two more editions of the tournament were held-in 1992 and 2009.[2]

2016 planned revival[edit]

At the 2013 Football Association of Singapore (FAS) annual general meeting, FAS president Zainudin Nordin expressed intention to revive the tournament. In early 2015, MP & Silva and FAS managed to secure a six-year partnership worth S$25 million. MP & Silva planned to organize the tournament slated in January 2016 at the 55,000-seater National Stadium.[2] However, in late 2015, after six months of negotiations, it was announced that negotiation to use the National Stadium as the venue of the Merlion Cup was stalled due to the Singapore Sports Hub demanding an upfront payment reportedly a six-digit figure to rent the stadium as the venue of two editions of the tournament in 2016 and 2017. This led the organizers to find an alternative venue and also considered holding the tournament in Malaysia.[3][4]

On 25 December 2015, it was announced that the 2016 Merlion Cup is postponed indefinitely.[5] Among the teams invited to participate along with hosts Singapore were the national teams of Myanmar,[5] and the Philippines[6] and club sides Shanghai Shenhua[5] and Yokohama F. Marinos.[5]

Summary[edit]

Year 1st Place 2nd Place 3rd Place 4th Place
1982
(details)

Australia

South Korea B

Indonesia

Malaysia
1983
Australia

Singapore

China PR

South Korea B
1st Place 2nd Place Semifinalists
1984
Iraq

South Korea B

Australia XI

Netherlands XI
1985
Yugoslavia Amateur

Singapore
Germany
Eintracht Frankfurt Amateur

Malaysia
1st Place 2nd Place 3rd Place 4th Place
1986
China PR

North Korea

Canada

Singapore
1st Place 2nd Place Semifinalists
1992
South Korea B

China PR

Singapore
Russia Lokomotiv Moskva
2009 England
Liverpool F.C.

Singapore
?

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Merlion Cup not on this year". New Straits Times. 9 June 1987. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  2. ^ a b Tan, Noah (20 October 2015). "Merlion Cup could return to S'pore in January". Today Online. Mediacorp Press Ltd. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  3. ^ Low Lin Fhoong (8 December 2015). "Merlion Cup seeks new venue". TODAY. Channel News Asia. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  4. ^ Low Lin Fhoong (13 November 2015). "Merlion Cup negotiations hit a wall". TODAY. Channel News Asia. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d Wang Meng Meng (25 December 2015). "No go for Merlion Cup, competition on hold indefinitely". The Strait Times. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  6. ^ Leyba, Olmin (11 January 2015). "Azkals gird for AFF, Asian, World Cup qualifying". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 13 January 2016. The Azkals mentor (Thomas Dooley) said Phl XI was supposed to take part in a tournament (Merlion Cup) in Singapore end of this month but learned it had been cancelled.

External links[edit]