Jul 14, 2013 Sports
I was not privy to see a copy of the Guyana Football Coaches Association 9 years Development Plan, for perusal, which was submitted to the Guyana Football Federation recently. However, my basic initiative tells me that clubs in each association respectively, must implement a properly structured youth programme, for participation in domestic and national competitions, more importantly, participation in regional and international competitions under the auspices of CFU, CONCACAF and FIFA respectively remains essential for true development.
Editor, as a consequence would Guyana, be participating in this year’s CFU regional under –15 Tournament in Trinidad& Tobago, scheduled for this month? Sad, indeed that the mantra of the inherent debt and being cash strapped, remains on the front burner as a deterrent, and definitely not from a realistic standpoint that the exceedingly high level of inactivity, in the respective associations at the under –15 level is the primary reason. By the way, was the GFF, in a proper state of preparedness?
Whereby with the relevant correspondence being received from CFU, within 72 hours, the issue should have been ventilated by the Federation’s executive and subsequently informing associations and other stakeholders, of its intended (non) participation. Strange as it may seem, under Klass’ stewardship, with all respect due, Guyana’s participation would have been a foregone conclusion.
However, with a give and take scenario currently existing in relation to a perceived lack of financing, or, realistically put the Federation’s inability to attract corporate sponsorship to the desired magnitude for participation, what contingency plans would be in place locally, to replace the shortfall regionally? Moreover, with the closure of schools for 8 weeks, would each association be mandated to have an under –15 inter-club competition, either a League or a Round Robin/Knockout; and definitely not a Knockout? And would the GFF, thereafter coordinate a nationwide inter-club round-robin/knockout competition, replacing the outdated inter-association competition?
Finally, with Guyana’s non-participation, in the CFU Regional Tournament, our youngsters automatically would be shortchanged by 2 years, along with the Coaches Association 9 years Development Plan, in actuality commencing with the under –15; encompassing U-17, U-19, U-21 and U-23 which translates to a 9 year cycle of development, (2013-22) within the age-limit category, with the final stop the Olympic Qualifiers! Along the way the Under –17 and Under-20 World Cups should be projected goals on the international stage, in addition to the Gold Cup, Olympics and finally the Senior World Cup. While on the regional stage the final four, in all age-limit and senior competitions!
It is interesting to know if the GFF, had the foresight to lobby the Trinidad & Tobago Football Federation, and by extension Central FC, towards having Walsall – an English League One Club to visit Guyana, to play a one off match against a GFF Super League X1, or both foreign teams playing, and also for the visitors to conduct a coaching clinic, with a proper marketing system in place, preceded by a budget of expenditure. The one off match could have provided some measure of profitability towards a start of the inherent debt liquidation.
Strange, as it may seem during my tenure as Hon. Secretary, of the then GFL, under the presidency of Winston Callender in the 90’s, former Head Coach of Fruta Conquerors, Deryck Whyte and myself was able to convince ‘Cally’ to lobby the then GFA President, Colin Klass at short notice for a coaching clinic to be conducted by Anton Corneal, Head Coach of T&T Under –23 national team that was in Guyana, for a friendly international at GCC. At the end of the clinic which was held at GFC, the Sunday morning that had attracted almost 60 youngsters, some of whom became national players .i.e. Elroy Parks, Seon Hescott, Gregory Richardson and the late Leslie Holligan and Shawn Bishop.
In his concluding remarks Corneal indicated “the level of talent that was evident is virtually on par with the under –15’s in his country, and it bothers him why Guyana, does not produce better results in regional youth competitions”. A timely reminder however is Guyana’s third place finish in a CFU Under – 15 tournament in 2007 under the stewardship of Head Coach, Lyndon France. But sadly thereafter at the Under-17 level and onwards there was no continuity! It would be interesting to note if the Federation’s executive that comprises of 3 coaches, who have all coached at the national level, either at the juniors or seniors, would not be vocal in their quest for proper development. Suffice, it to say that all 3 are also members of the Coaches Association!
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