Sore losers burn Vietnamese flag and beat up rival supporters after second leg semi-final loss to Vietnam

By |2010-07-11T00:23:33+08:00December 22nd, 2008|football, RED out loud|44 Comments
Views: 9,410

By Les Tan.

singapore vs vietnam aff soccer

The Vietnamese fans who cheered their hearts out had to deal with rowdy Singaporeans who attacked them after the game. (Photo © Lai Jun Wei/Red Sports)

National Stadium, Sunday, December 21, 2008 – Some Singaporeans showed last night what idiots they were when they criminally attacked Vietnamese supporters who were celebrating outside the stadium after the game, leaving some with bloodied faces.

Singapore lost 0-1 last night in the second leg semi-final of the ASEAN Football Championship against Vietnam and for some ‘fans’, it was apparently too much to bear.

Wrote a participant in online forum, andy_88: “Was very upset with some of the Singapore fans, especially after the match. I saw very ugly scenes when exiting the stadium, Vietnam supporters being pushed around and their flag being taken away by Singapore supporters. The worst of it was some Singapore supporter who started burning the Vietnam flag and behaved as if it is a heroic act.”

The scene outside the stadium left some folks fearful for their safety, especially those with children. Another participant in the forum, Firdaus1990, recounted what he saw.

“At the East Entrance fights were breaking out and I saw a Malay uncle grabbing his baby and running down the steps because it was getting out of hand and his family had the risk of being caught up in it. The Malay uncle had a couple of kids too and what if he had fallen?

I personally had to grab a Vietnamese fan and push him back because he was in a blind panic and he nearly ran headlong into my girlfriend and could have knocked her down. I feel sorry for him because he was being chased by the crowd.

I saw people being funny and blocking ambulances when it’s obvious people were being hurt.

Somebody grabbed a Vietnamese flag somewhere and they were burning it when a CISCO officer came flying in with his baton.

I was at the overhead bridge when I saw a couple of Vietnamese being brutally punched in their faces. Their faces were bleeding pretty heavily.

I am ashamed at the behaviour of large numbers of our fans. Totally crossed over the line. Most of all I am angry that there was insufficient police protection and organization. Those CISCO cops were almost helpless.”

To abuse our Vietnamese guests while they are in town supporting their team is a shameful display by so-called Singaporean fans. It’s not reflective of the majority of peace-loving Singaporeans obviously but it only takes a few idiots to spoil everyone’s name.

All Singaporeans will agree that the police should throw the book at these mobsters and put them away in jail.


With regard to the mobs that attacked the Vietnamese fans ...

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I first found out about the attacks on Vietnamese fans and the burning of the Vietnamese flag...

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Related story:
"Four or five hit me on the face…two or three Singaporeans came to help me out." – a Vietnamese fan recounts a scary night


  1. vy December 29, 2008 at 10:44 am - Reply

    It was a terrible incident. Very sorry for those who got hurt. Thank you to the author & the good Singaporeans who offered help/rescue & spoke against any senseless act of violence whether it was provoked or not. Let’s remind each other, regardless of one’s nationality, to behave decently & respectfully at any international event. It’s an individual choice that reflects a collective national pride & spirit.

  2. Ganga December 28, 2008 at 11:57 am - Reply

    I believe this incident is a bit overrated. The behaviour of the Singaporeans was indeed appalling but the fact of the matter is that it could not have come out of some sort of love for the scrap national team that we have (not to mention with few players actually born in Singapore, to begin with).

    I would opine instead that it was the typical frustration of living a Singapore life that manifested into acts of random violence – which happened to occur after a football match because of the suitable circumstances (good crowd, easy targets etc). In my opinion, calling this football hooliganism is an insult to all hooligans around the world.

    It was just a bunch of morons who got too fed-up with their own lives…

  3. Englishman December 26, 2008 at 3:37 pm - Reply

    Wow! Just like a real English football match!

  4. BS Jeffrey December 26, 2008 at 9:44 am - Reply

    I was at the stadium and actually saw that some vietnamese fans was under attacked by some idiots Singaporeans. The Cisco officers were there but there are very few to protect the Vietnamese fans. I felt very sorry for the Vietnamese fans as I saw them surrounded by those idiots that makes Singaporeans looks bad on that night. But I would also like to point out that the Vietnamese fans could have just listen to the Cisco officers who was trying to protect them instead of trying to retaliate with those idiots thus creating a very difficult situation for our officers as those idiots Singaporeans who started all this seems to show no respect at all to Cisco officers. Maybe next time if there are visiting team supporters here, they must be protectec by the Special Operation Command Police as those idiots will be afraid of them.

  5. HY December 26, 2008 at 1:59 am - Reply

    To lions:

    Just because of insensitive people like you who assume everything, you assume that if we won in Hanoi and celebrated the Vietnamese people will pound us. You assume that it was ALWAYS the vietnamese supporters who started it.
    It led to the sore loser singapore fan bashing up Vietnamese supporters, and try to push the blame to others.Come on think about others, put yourself in others shoes. I bet if Singapore were to have won in Vietnam and you were there, you would have celebrated right in their faces if you were there.

    I also disagree totally with your ‘just imagine if we Singaporeans are in their country and we won.they would have done worser things in anger.its the Singaporeans right to get angry when Vietnamese made a mockery on Singaporeans.’ , just because of your assumption you condone this kind of uncivilized act happening right within our country, I am really disappointed to know that people with your thinking are still living in our society.
    Go do some reflection, you need it ALOT.

  6. Attended the Game December 26, 2008 at 12:27 am - Reply

    The Vietnam supporters were gesturing wildly at us and they in my opinion were the ones who ignited the fire.
    During the match,at one point,they all turned to us and waved and smiled sarcastically.
    I can say throughout the whole match they were adding wood to the fire.
    And to set it ablaze,when they were walking out,they were celebrating wildly.

    Now tell me how can you not restrain yourself?

  7. jy December 25, 2008 at 3:24 pm - Reply

    To the victimised vietnamese fans:

    Those rowdy uncouth monkeys are just a minority among all Singaporeans. Please do not let this unfortunate incident taint your faith in the civility of Singaporeans in general.

    On behalf of those barbaric bastards, I’m sorry for the trauma you guys suffered. Please forgive us.

  8. bill December 25, 2008 at 3:40 am - Reply

    I’m a vietnamese. I’m very angry to hear about that thing.Please don’t do that anymore Singaporean.

  9. Vietnamese fan December 25, 2008 at 1:39 am - Reply

    I’m a Vietnamese and I was in the stadium that day.
    Poon: I don’t have anything to say to a person like you. While Singapore is trying to be an education hub of Asia, there is still people like you spoil it
    Lions (name of one person has comment in this post): “The vietnamese fans deserved to get that, because they were too much, and just imagine if we singaporeans are in their country and we won.they would have done worser things in anger.” Remember 1998, Singapore won Vietnam in the final match in Vietnam, there were Singaporean fans and what happened to them? Your words just show how shallow you are.
    To all others: thanks for all your opinions and I really understand that those fans are just minority. I’m working here and I play soccer with Singaporean colleagues weekly, I know your country is not like that. However, this is really a loss of your polices and security guards. I really hope that those fans will pay for what they did.

  10. Vin December 25, 2008 at 1:07 am - Reply

    wow…I guess nowadays singaporeans do not include sportmanship in their dictionary..LOL…C’mon…Be a gentlemen..Singaporeans…All Talk No Action…wahaha

  11. Rubberband December 24, 2008 at 10:50 pm - Reply

    I think what escalated the situation was pure frustration of what happened on the pitch:

    1)The Singapore team was really ineffective and it was frustrating to see them play like that..Some looked like they don’t even belong on the field at all…I would be more sad than angry if they played hard and lost.I think the team should consider apologising to their fans for god knows what they were doing in the game..hahaha.

    2)The vietnamese team seemed to be putting on a show..That really ticked us off. I admit I was really angry and I felt that most falls dun seem genuine at all.All that unneccesary drama leads to the Singapore fans feeling helpless and hence the need to vent their anger somewhere. Since they could not touch the players or the referees, the fans were victimised since errmmm…they were more accessible.

    However, any form of violence should no be condoned. Luckily I was from the West Entrance..Somehow rather the situation were more civillised there.

  12. Hamizan December 24, 2008 at 1:56 pm - Reply

    Lol this is football fans after all

  13. George December 24, 2008 at 12:55 pm - Reply

    It’s just a football game, however, there’s a lot of things we can learn from this.
    Regarding our own fans, Vietnamese, it’s really unwise to overact and provoke home fans when supporting away, let alone arrogantly respond to cheers and jeers from the home crowds. Clashes and quarrels during the match are normal and common, as anybody could lose his cool and composure once or twice, however, don’t let the fault perception of invincibility and anonymity, which is rendered when you are in a crowd, fool you into making any over boarding acts. It proved fatal, sadly :(. I feel really sorry for anyone who is innocently involved, but we are also partly responsible for it.

  14. A Vietnamese fan December 24, 2008 at 11:52 am - Reply

    Undeniably there were some aggressive Vietnam fans at the stadium that night but I was shocked and extremely disappointed by reactions of a number of Singapore fans.

    Right after the game ended, we, a group of Vietnamese and English students studying at NUS felt afraid of getting out of the stadium because many Singapore fans were furious, swore and attacked Vietnam fans right on the stadium.

    We tried to group and escape from the stadium by East Wing but we lost each other because of the attacks by Singapore fans. Singapore fans stood all over the staircases and upper levels, and threw everything they could over to Vietnam fans. We were scared to death by a rain of water bottles, slippers and even wood bars.

    We used whatever-we-can-use to cover our heads and ran as fast as we could out of the stadium but there were some Singapore fans chased after Vietnam fans and beat them up. Another scary scene was that a Singapore fan used his helmet hit to a Vietnam fan’s head and chased after him even when he was desperately tried to get out of the stadium with a bloody face.

    In a crowd flocked to Kallang MRT station, I was scared still because I just couldn’t take off my Vietnam T-shirt as I did with my ribbons.

    I understand how sad Singapore fans were after the match but what happened after the game was really not what I had expected from calm Singaporeans I have known after 1 and a half year living in this country.

    I vividly remember I was asked by my English friend when we had dinner together before the game: “What would happen if Vietnam loses tonight?” – “That would be fine, too. I don’t really care about which team is gonna win. We are here just to support our national team and see how well both teams can play..”. He continued: “So what would happen if Vietnam wins and Singapore fans get mad and beat you guys up?”. – “Ha ha, you don’t understand Singaporeans, they wouldn’t do that. They are well-known for being calm and harmony…”

  15. King Crippler of Temasek December 24, 2008 at 11:29 am - Reply

    To be honest, Vietnamese fans started it first. I was sitting just beside the Vietnamese fans in the stadium. Right after the Vietnamese football team score, the Vietnamese fans erupted into celebration and amidst that, some Vietnamese threw a cup of Pepsi at one old Singaporean Chinese uncle. We did not retaliate. Even after the match, when some Vietnamese fans left early, that group stumbled into some angry Singapore fans. One of the Vietnamese purposely stood in the walkway and bare his chest out proudly whilst provoking the Singaporeans amidst vulgar chantings from both sides. He was acting proud as if he has killed an American soldier. He was actually beaten up by some small kid in the face. Of course it is never right to hurt some one without justifiable reason but Vietnamese fans should be smart enough not to provoke the home fans. It takes two hands to clap. Singaporeans should also learn to take defeat with grace. Look on the bright side of life. We have won the cup for so many times. Give the Communists a chance to win this time around. And i hope Vietnam wins the AFF Suzuki Cup 2008 because i would love to see them beat Thailand. You wouldn’t want the Thais to win their fourth cup wouldn’t you? At least it will put a balance in South East Asia. Kudos to Vietnam! But when they return, we will greet them again but this time, ‘Vietnam, Welcome To the Lion’s Den’. Long live Singapore!

    Ed’s note: This comment has been edited to remove derogatory terms used in reference to Vietnamese.

  16. Julie December 24, 2008 at 11:28 am - Reply

    Dear Vietnamese Friends, I truly feel sorry and embarassed of what my own countrymen did. You guys don’t deserve that kind of treatment. I wouldn’t want to get the same treatment when Im in another country. I want to be warmly welcome! This is totally not fair for you guys. I think those thugs should face the authorities. They must pay for what they did.

  17. Sighhhh December 24, 2008 at 10:30 am - Reply

    I am really upset to read Lion post. What did our people do to be deserved beaten up by your people? Is it because we cheered for our country? Is it because we sang our song in front of you?..

    For those who used violence to our people:

    1. You buy other national flag to burn –> you are coward

    2. You use violence to other people for just releasing your stress –> you are stupid and mean

    3. You beat up women –> worse than animal

    –> Now: you attacked other people, took their national flag ,burnt the flag , bullied women, … –> Where are you from ?? some kind of stupid, bastard, crazy. Worse than animal.

    Burning other national flag is not acceptable. Please imagine that your national flag is burned by other.

    For the rest of Singapore, I am happy that you guys do not accept that kind of bad behavior.

    Merry chritmas and happy new year all of you.

  18. Victor December 24, 2008 at 1:27 am - Reply

    Really really disappointed about what “Lions” and “jeremy” wrote above. What happened was the act of a group of shameful youngsters, at the heat of the moment. And you guys are making it worse.
    “singaporeans has the rights to do so”?? “The vietnamese deserved it.”?? How sorry i feel for you when i read this.
    And the vn fan who still wave his country flags when surrounded by a bunch of thugs, how brave he was! And you use it as a valid reason he was beaten up???
    If you talk about behavior, just the fact that group of Singapore supporters used the word “butoh” to chant alone tells everything. But whatever the fans do during the game, it is not right and it is a crime to harm another person. Somehow i feel you both encourage revenge and violence as a solution to everything.
    I believe most of the Vietnamese who know Singapore know that this is not what the majority of Singaporeans would agree or do. So Les pls follow your story and let it heard, so that sad things like this won’t happen again in the future.

  19. Po Hui December 24, 2008 at 12:09 am - Reply

    It was shockin’ to hear that…

    It reminds me of that ugly scenes I witnessed with my own eyes in the 2004’s semi-final between us and Myanmar, where rival fans clashed on the stands…

    How contradicting it is as I remembered greeting the Vietnamese supporters before and after the game with goodwill..

    Those thugs are a shameful lots..

  20. prob December 23, 2008 at 9:52 pm - Reply

    Frankly speaking, as a European living in SIngapore for the last two years, I would say that the blame is to be put on the lack of security and organization.

    A game such as the one on Sunday was bound to be tense…no need to be so smart to forsee that.

    Uneducated guys are plenty on both sides, but why was CISCO agents so little in numbers??? WHere was the police forces??? Ws it for budgetary reasons that so little attention had been put on security?

    It is simply showing that Singapore is not yet there in many aspects when it comes to organizing real big events. Friendly interest-free Youth Games, fine, but big, tense, events….not yet.

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