‘Backwater’ and ‘Singapore’, those are two words we don’t see together too often. But that’s how United Kingdom’s second biggest-selling daily newspaper, the Daily Mail, has chosen to describe Jermaine Pennant’s signing for Tampines Rovers.
If it is any consolation, besides India, Colombia, Iran, Japan, Brunei, Philippines and Maldives, New Zealand and Australia too are in this ‘backwater’ list. Never mind that Australia’s Socceroos have been at the FIFA World Cup on four occasions.
But ‘backwater’ or not, it would do good for the world’s most read newspaper to report accurately which club Pennant actually plays for, and not make club names up.
Jermaine Pennant has not signed for Tampines United, but for Tampines Rovers. We are not even sure if there is any club by the name of Tampines United in Singapore.
We are not quite sure how they got the name mixed-up when the first picture the British publication used for its write-up clearly shows the club logo in the backdrop with “Rovers” in the name.
Or perhaps that’s one reason why Graeme Shimmin, a published writer in Forbes and Huffington Post, calls Daily Mail the Daily Fail.
A Facebook page dedicated to local football, Centre Circle, takes issue with Daily Mail’s reporting of the signing and said, “regardless of whether the S.League is considered football backwater or not, good journalism ought to still be practised when naming established entities”.
“We hope Daily Mail will make the necessary corrections and perhaps apologise to Tampines Rovers Football Club while they’re at it,” Centre Circle added.