Local fans are gearing up for football frenzy with the 2012 European Championship.
Tonight’s opening match between co-host Poland and Greece will kick off the event at 11 p.m. Jakarta time. Fans in Indonesia can watch every match for free on a terrestrial channel, RCTI.
RCTI says it has prepared several programs to entertain fans and viewers on and off the screen. The country’s oldest private TV station will build an outdoor studio, said to be the biggest in Indonesia. It will be used for interviews and other events related to the championship.
“We have been preparing Euro 2012 exclusive programs. We’ve built an outdoor studio with a ball-shaped, giant LED screen,” RCTI managing director Kanti Mirdiati said.
RCTI will air all 31 matches, with 27 of them live and four delayed. It will also air supporting programs such as on-air quizzes, previews and reviews. To present the best coverage, the station has sent three teams to cover the event both in Ukraine and Poland.
To draw more fans, the station has also prepared off-air programs, including public viewings in four spots around the Greater Jakarta area.
Local football fans are eager for the event to start. Median Raharjo said he was excited to watch his favorite team, Germany, which is one of the tournament favorites. “I put my bet on Germany because the team has experienced players from two big clubs, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund. I think they will play well with each other,” Median said.
Arindra Karamoy is rooting for Spain instead. The Spaniards won Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup.
“I’ve been a Spain fan since the mid-1990s, when Fernando Hierro still played and wore the captain’s armband. As long as the team doesn’t rely too much on Barcelona players, I’m confident they will reach the semifinals at least,” Arindra said.