Our Footballer, Your Hero

I’m sure that Hassan Sunny didn’t expect; not in his wildest dreams that he could be called a 门神 by Chinese football fans. As a goalkeeper for the lions, he performed better than expected in the World Cup match against Thailand on 11 June 2024. He made almost a dozen saves but allowed 3 goals to pass. By any standards, it’s not a spectacular performance. Curiously, millions of fans in China were celebrating even when many Singapore fans are still mourning the loss. Why? Watch the video below.

Hassan Sunny has capitalised on this madness. After explaining to the Chinese media that he didn’t deliberately help China get into the Top 18 and we give him the benefit of the doubt for not being able to read the banner that says 为中国而战,he went to China to serve nasi lemak. But make no mistake, the people who matter in China are not recruiting Hassan Sunny for his footballing skills.

If you look at the comments section, you’ll notice that the haters are more vocal than the fans. Their stand is neither obvious and nor are they making any clear statement. They are just mudslinging and that’s what these modern Red Guards are good at because reason is simply not on their side. However, they are a very powerful political weapon that can be used against Party rivals as in the case of Mao Zedong vs Liu Shaoqi. In the digital age, the bullying can spread across borders.