Ex-EPL players reveal more of themselves at TNP's Twitter session

For an hour yesterday afternoon, a trio of former English Premier League players took over The New Paper's Twitter account.

In town to promote the Barclays Asia Trophy which takes place in Singapore in July, they fielded questions from TNP's Twitter followers and went through a test of their knowledge on their former clubs.

But Ian Wright, Graham Stuart and Mamady Sidibe came through unscathed, and revealed a few secrets along the way.

For instance, Wright had a crush on his school teacher when he was 13.

Said Wright, who was Arsenal's all-time record goalscorer with 185 strikes until a certain Thierry Henry came along: "Her name was Mrs Dance. She taught geography.

"She was a gorgeous woman."

Stuart, whose two goals on the final day of the 1993/94 season helped Everton beat Wimbledon 3-2 to stave off relegation, also won the FA Cup with the Toffees in 1995.

Obviously, he still holds fond memories of his time at the club, except for that horrible away kit that he and his teammates had to don for a season.

Asked for the most-hated away jersey he had ever worn, he said: "We had this Everton strip that was salmon pink, with navy stripes. It must had been 1993-ish."

The jade-green top which he donned when he played for Chelsea also came in for special mention.


Sidibe, who turned out for Stoke City from 2005 to 2013, clearly enjoyed his short stay in Singapore, and was full of praise for the Lion City.

He said: "This is a beautiful country.

"The people are lovely and very passionate about football.

"I hope to be here again in July."

A small group of fans attended the event and left with autographed memorabilia and photographs with their football heroes.

Derek Chua, 36, a real estate agent, was delighted to come face to face with Wright, his footballing hero.

As he proudly brandished a photo of Wright and him on his digital camera, the Arsenal fan said: "Can you imagine how significant this is for me, meeting my all-time favourite player?

"I found out about this event only at the last minute, so I headed straight to the shopping mall next door to buy an Arsenal top and a marker so that Wright could sign it for me.

"I enjoyed the session very much."

Khristian Koh, 38, a financial adviser donning an Everton jersey, even came with his wife and his four-month-old daughter.

Stuart, he said, represents the heart and soul of the Merseyside club.

Koh said: "He was an inspirational figure at the club at a time when they were not doing too well.

"He is down to earth and he played with his heart.

"My baby daughter just got her vaccination earlier, so I thought I would just take my wife and her along.

"What a pleasure it is to meet Graham Stuart."


What: Barclays Asia Trophy Who: Arsenal, Everton, Stoke City and a Singapore Selection side

When: July 15 (Wed) and July 18 (Sat)

Where: National Stadium Ticket prices for July 15 range from $25 (Cat 4, child) to $145 (Cat 1). Prices for the event's final day on July 18 range from $28 to $155. Tickets can be bought at www.sportshubtix.sg, the box office at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, and all SingPost outlets.


This article was first published on May 14, 2015.
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