SINGAPORE: Chinese fans have showered Lions goalkeeper Hassan Sunny with love and gratitude for his pivotal role in helping China reach the final 18 of the Asian qualifiers for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. As a token of appreciation, they have even sent money through a QR code to his family’s Nasi Padang stall, Dapur Hassan.

Singapore vs Thailand

On Tuesday night (Jun 11), Singapore and Thailand clashed in a fiercely contested match that ended with Singapore enduring yet another crushing defeat, with the final score settling at 1-3.

Despite Thailand’s victory, Singapore has made it impossible for them to advance, as they needed to win by a margin of at least three goals to secure a berth in the final 18.

Failing to meet this margin meant that China, instead, advanced to the final round. 

This unexpected outcome was largely attributed to Hassan’s heroic efforts in the match, where he made an impressive 11 saves under intense pressure. 

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Chinese football fans express their gratitude

After China officially clinched the spot, social media platforms were abuzz with excitement. 

The hashtag “China reaches last 18 of the World Cup Qualifying” quickly climbed to the number one spot on Weibo, garnering an astonishing 340 million views as fans celebrated their team’s achievement.

Hassan’s name also trended on multiple Chinese social media platforms, such as Douyin, Weibo, and WeChat.

Moreover, Tiktok user EatAi786 (HalalFoodie) revealed on Wednesday (Jun 13) that Chinese fans have flocked to Hassan’s family stall, Dapur Hassan, located at Block 144, Tampines Street 12 to express their gratitude.

“Hassan Sunny, the most famous Singaporean in China today,” the Tiktoker said. “He’s the number one trending on all the platforms in China. Why? Because of the match yesterday between Singapore and Thailand, he’s the keyman who helped China to go to the next round. Many thanks to him. ”

He then showed a long queue forming in the background. “You see all the people is queuing? And they’re all Chinese. They come here showing their support.”

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Many vloggers were also noted to be present at the scene, live streaming the event.

The Tiktoker also attempted to buy some food from Dapur Hassan, but the server informed him that they only had sandwiches left. 

“All finished, we just have something whatever they have.”

He then proceeded to explain that earlier that day, a guy posted the stall’s barcode in China. 

“They received a lot of payments from China. Wow, that’s crazy.”

@eatai786

Singaporean football player @hassansunny18 suddenly go viral in China, because of a match yesterday, he’s hero in China now. Most importantly,he’s our Muslim brother. I went to his Nasi Lemak Shop and had a little chat with his family. All of Chinese there to show support. alhamdulillah.#eat爱 #chinesemuslim

♬ 原声 – EatAi亦太(HalalFoodie) – EatAi亦太(HalalFoodie)

The video has amassed 360.2k views and 14.4k likes on the platform.

Aside from personally buying food from the stall and sending money through the QR code, Chinese football fans have even gone so far as to leave positive reviews for Hassan’s stall online.

One user said, “The world’s top goalkeeper and his top restaurant! Although, I have never been there, it must taste good.”

Photo: Reddit/ PandaPast4690

Another commented, “Noble goalkeeper got a yellow card for stalling time. He sent China team from ICU to KTV. Thank you, Singapore. Thank you.”

Photo: Reddit/ moonlighthorfun

Over on Reddit, various Hassan Sunny memes have also emerged. One meme, which was a screenshot from a TikTok video, said: “China then, Destroy Singapore. China Now, You Saved China.”

Photo: Reddit/ merlion_sg

Another meme, which featured an image of Spider-Man being carefully carried by a group of people, also surfaced. Its caption read, “China Chinese fans be treating Hassan Sunny like: Carefully, He’s a hero.”

Photo: Reddit/ 10 cent kiddy ride helicopter

Read also: Lions to face China without Safuwan, Lionel, and Anumanthan