More fans expected to show up at EPL screenings

IT MAY have been a slow start but it was a start nonetheless.

And Michael Foo, director for community sports at the People's Association, believes that the free screening of English Premier League (EPL) football matches at community clubs is bound to pick up steam.

"We're rather happy," he said on the sidelines of yesterday's Singapore Canoe Marathon.

"It's a start and we're sure that the numbers will grow."

According to Foo, Saturday night's screening of Chelsea's 2-0 win over Hull City attracted an average of 80 fans across nine venues. It marked the beginning of a tie-up with SingTel which will run till the end of the current season, with an option of a further two years.

Another 14 CCs will commence screenings this week though it remains to be seen which matches will be picked in the coming weeks.

"The 1.30am matches on Sunday morning could be difficult," Foo acknowledged. "But if it's a big game and depending on available resources, the CCs might decide to screen it."

This could extend to this summer's World Cup - particularly in the wake of the successful screening of the 2010 event, which drew over 183,000 fans to 16 participating CCs islandwide.

"We won't make any plans until we've had a look at the fixtures," Foo said.

"But, yes, that's definitely something we would love to work with our partners on."

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