offside.hk is a new English platform that aims to fill a gap in critical engagement with Hong Kong’s local football scene on a day-to-day basis. Founded in June 2014, offside.hk operates across various social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, and has recently launched its own website featuring news, background stories, interviews, fixtures, league tables and tactical analyses.
Our team consists of both local Chinese-speakers and foreigners, sharing the same objective to increase the awareness for Hong Kong’s local football scene. The mutual motivation is rooted in an obvious lack of coverage in English that has hindered non-local fans but also (non-Chinese) staff and players of local teams from keeping up-to-date with the sport. The main focus of offside.hk will be the newly established Premier League, the 1st Division, the AFC Cup as well as international competitions of the representative teams
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Tobias Zuser (founder, editor-in-chief)
Tobias has been living in Hong Kong and China since 2008. After working as an arts and event manager in Beijing for more than three years, where he also became a passionate supporter of Beijing Guoan, he moved back to Hong Kong in 2012. Currently he pursues his PhD degree at Hong Kong Baptist University, Department of Humanities and Creative Writing, focusing on football culture as well as cultural/sports policies in Hong Kong and China. In June 2014 he started offside.hk, as the first English platform solely dedicated to local football. His favourite Hong Kong sides are Kitchee and Taipo.
Jeff Hardbattle (managing editor, graphic designer)
Jeff moved to Japan in 2008 where he became immediately involved in writing blogs, match reports and statistics for J League games. He moved to Hong Kong in early 2013, and he has since done translation work and match reporting for YFCMD. He is very interested in promoting local football in order to attract more money and quality to the local game.
Christopher KL Lau (photographer, senior editor)
Chris was born in England and grew up in both England and Hong Kong. He has a background in media, education and non-profits. Chris is also a freelance writer and has written for a number of magazines, websites and newspapers around the world on many subjects ranging from the arts to travel. He is regular contributor to offside.hk and wildeastfootball.net. Chris is passionate about sports and its place in society. He is keen to promote both the Hong Kong Premier League and the Chinese Super League to a wider global audience. Chris follows Beijing Guoan’s results after living in Beijing for one memorable year in 2004.
Matt Worth (editor)
Matt has divided the last decade of his life between London and Hong Kong and is passionate about Asian football culture, Hong Kong in particular. He has been writing and blogging about football for several years, and is a fan of serially disappointing English Premier League side Newcastle United. He has not yet adopted a Hong Kong club as his own, though for consistency it would need to be one that hasn’t won anything since the 1950s. In his spare time, Matt carves out a career as a corporate lawyer.
Jacob Panons (editor)
At 16, Jacob is the youngest member of the offside.hk team. Jacob was born in England but moved to Hong Kong when he was 8. He has played in the Henderson Youth League as a goalkeeper, is extremely passionate about football and is also a licensed junior referee. .
Chichio Suen (editor)
Chichio was born in Macau and moved with his family to Hong Kong at the age of 6, being now a permanent citizen of both places. Following the news and reports on the mainstream media, new media, internet forums and blogs, he has been accumulating knowledge about football in Hong Kong, China, South-East Asia and some other places. Like the uncles on the stands, he cheers for good performances and does not have strong preferences toward clubs (except a club with relegation controversy; and in continental matches he must support HK sides).
Manni Cheung (editor)
Manni was born in Hong Kong and has been a fan of the national football team since day 1. As a graduate from Lingnan University, Department of Cultural Studies, he is especially interested in looking at football culture from a local context. Manni also once played as a goalkeeper in high school, following his two idols Yapp Hung Fai and Fan Chun Yip.
JRP Borthwick (photographer)
Jarl, or JB as he is known, is a part-time football photographer and full time football fan. JB grew up in Hong Kong and has fond memories of playing football here during his youth – from the potato patch that Happy Valley used to be, to playing in Aberdeen in the shadow (and the strong odour) of the BAT factory building. JB is committed to promoting the quality of both local football support and participation. When not playing, supporting or photographing footy, JB promotes his charity (The Wellbeing Society), writes children’s books and works in business development.
Ryan Kam (photographer)
Ryan grew up in the Ferguson era and is a true fan of attacking football. While he is a full time office worker in Hong Kong, he also enjoys the excitement of capturing special moments of the game (and in life) through his lens. Ryan would like to witness it someday when Hong Kong , a place he calls home, rebuilds its footballing image as one of the better teams in the region.
Afonso Pires (Macau editor)
Afonso was born in Portugal and has fallen in love with football as a child. He played in a youth Portuguese team and is also a big Benfica supporter. In recent years, Afonso discovered his interest in Asian football and especially the Macau Elite League, given the historic legacy of Portugal and Macau. He currently finishes his master degree in Forestry and Natural Resources Management at Instituto Superior de Agronomia.