Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 29th 2013 Contents A67
Saturday, June 29, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
For many years, the people of this
country have been sharing their views
openly when matters regarding sport
did not appear to be in keeping with
any organized progress line and the
absence of good management
brought criticism, either through the
radio programmes or the newspaper.
I have had the task of listening to
callers who were either being heavily
critical about certain issues or seeking
to find out about issues which are
tending to derail the progress of one
sporting discipline or another.
I suppose that it would be accurate
if some accused me of taking issue
over the years, with matters which I
felt were not in keeping with the com-
petence that is expected from man-
agement of sporting organisations.
My reasons were never intended to
cast aspersions of anyone unduly and
because of my direct involvement
with some of these sports, I almost
felt obligated to express my opinion
on different matters of grave concern.
The past two weeks brought be
right back into those challenging days
when the rulers of the major sports
often hid behind the caption of being
amateurs and were only helping out
at the executive level.
Today, there is nothing like an ama-
teur in sport. Everyone wants to be
paid for their services and work hard
to get into leadership roles where
they can have the power to rule the
The games of football and cricket
have taken steep roller coaster rides
through the years. Our teams have
been taken to the top of the rung in
regional sport on some occasions, and
later fall to its lowest ebb not too long
Recently, the callers appeared to
have been caught by the snap deci-
sion made by the football leaders to
make changes to the technical staff
10 days before the team faces the
gold cup finalists in the USA.
Knowing that I was once faced with
that type of treatment, many believe
that the bitterness which may have
remained in my heart would encour-
age some reaction and possibly an
opinion. Unfortunately, I have learnt
that taking an argumentative ap-
proach can only bring animosity and
unnecessary disunity among people
who may all have similar intentions
and aspirations towards sport.
I prefer to break the decisions into
components in order to recognize the
concept behind each move.
Firstly, an immediate analysis
should be made of the current situa-
tion which the national football is po-
The answer is simply that the com-
parison between the qualification of
this year's gold cup finals and the two
previous years, appears to be an im-
provement of some kind.
I do recall the disaster in Martinique
in December 2010 when we cut a
sorry picture and failed to qualify.
Prior to that was also dismal failure to
reach the finals.
Now that two local coaches have
weathered the storm through two
group stages of games to reach the fi-
nals, I do not see reason for their dis-
Maybe the administration forgot
that they had invested in Hutson
Charles by sending him to Holland for
a coaching course.
They also failed to acknowledge
that the former strike squad mid-
fielder was also attached to a string
of young players as assistant coach
for the better part of five years, a task
which took the Under-17 and U-20 na-
tional teams to Fifa world Cup finals
in South Korea and Egypt.
If a defeat against Romania was
reason for making the change, it could
not be justified, because we have
never defeated an European national
team when we played them away.
In 1981, we defeated the Republic
of Ireland at the Arima Velodrome
five days after Brazil defeated them in
Brasilia. The irish were preparing for
the world Cup finals in Spain.
Do I think that Hutson has reached
the standard required for top interna-
tional competition? No! But how will
we find out if we do not let him face
the challenge, especially knowing that
he had brought them to this stage
Now, many are enquiring about the
invitation given to the once famous
Dutch coach Leo Beenhakker to ac-
cept a position of director of football.
That was a shocker! I have never
heard of such a position in a football as-
sociation. Did the present executive
seek the permission of the general
council (clubs) to create a new position.
My most recent look at the Fifa
guidelines to the member associa-
tions has a list of all the official stake-
holders, included the general council
of clubs at the head, the executive
committee, followed by an employed
secretary, then the technical director
(TD). All these positions are the key
The TD's job is specified clearly and
does not include any interaction with
the national coach, but is responsible
for the youth national programme,
the training of coaches and creating a
positive image of football in the coun-
try.If the executive committee made
the decision to employ someone to
take over the Gold Cup team without
an input of the former technical staff,
they obviously lack the understanding
of what development is about.
Coaches are not magicians and one
week before a tournament with a
new coach is as chaotic as it is con-
My issue is not with the personnel
chosen. It is mainly with the fact that
once again, we have shown our hands
that foreigners are better, regardless
of when and where they arrive.
If we wanted to search for a na-
tional coach for the future, it would
have been nice to advertise the job
and ask the applicants to analyse the
performances of our team in the gold
cup and give a report as to how they
will handle the team from there on-
Like some other contenders,
Stephen Hart could well be a good
prospect, and I am certain that he will
be careful in making decisions with-
out asking the current staff.
Finally, could some one of our gov-
ernment ministers answer this ques-
tion? What are the laws which are
laid down for a foreigner to be em-
ployed in this country for any posi-
tion? Would it be necessary for the
employer to advertise the job in order
to ensure that the best qualified per-
son gets the nod? I wish someone in
the Ministry of Labour can provide
our sports leaders with the answer.
CRICKETER AND FOOTBALLER
Questions with answers
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