Today on the radio, some DJ was interviewing a local football official about the state of the game in Singapore right now and what can be done to improve the game. The official gave a surprising fact to the DJ; some schools in Singapore are not offering the game as a CCA anymore.
I was surprised but at the same time, I know I should not be.
The official said the blame for this was due to the fact schools now only offer sports which they can win in. This means the sports they offered and put resources in are sports which they are traditionally good at. As he said, "If you are not going to win, then don't play."
I don't think that's quite right.
Now I won't discount the reason the official gave as totally incorrect but I think there's one more reason the official has not said. Football is just not as popular among the young as it used to be.
I say this because...well, a lot of kids nowadays can no longer watch football on TV. Ever since Singtel got the EPL rights and jacked up the price, I have not subscribed. I don't think I'm the only one who didn't. A lot of people who used to regularly watch football on Saturday night now no longer do so. Their kids who would watch the game with their fathers now would also not be able to watch the game.
Without the exposure of the EPL, it's little wonder football has dropped in popularity in Singapore. Older fans are still fans, but for the young who don't watch the EPL (or watched it irregularly), football is just not as important to them as it was when I was young. It's natural.