Sep 25, 2021 Sports
Kaieteur News – Georgetown -: The management of the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) regrets to learn, via the media, of the sincere frustrations felt by Jalade Trim’s mother in sourcing relevant match footage of her daughter. To put the record straight, the GFF can, in no way, be charged with impeding Jalade’s opportunities with any professional club or otherwise. On the contrary, the GFF has been working, over the last few weeks, to assist Jalade and her mother in tracing any available footage. It goes without saying that the GFF actively promotes and invests in the careers of all of its youth national players, and in no way acts to impede them. It is malicious and wholly inaccurate to suggest otherwise.
To clarify one of the unsubstantiated allegations in the one-sided Stabroek News story by Mr.
Duncan Saul, the GFF has no remit or current capacity to collect and catalogue individual player footage, no broadcast rights for tournaments organised by Concacaf, nor any capacity or media rights to build a library of such material.
After receiving an informal request from Jalade’s mother, we have continued to work with Concacaf to locate any relevant footage from its archive. The only available recordings of Jalade are during an 2018 U15 Concacaf match against the Bahamas, which is publicly and freely available on the Concacaf website here, and a promotional video filmed during her trip to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, which was facilitated by the GFF. The former video link was shared with all players involved shortly after the match in question, and the latter video has no scouting value.
In 2020, the GFF acquired state-of-the-art match recording technology that is in the process of being tested at the GFF National Training Centre. This tool will be used to capture footage from regional youth tournaments in the future, once the appropriate rights and conditions are secured by the GFF. This will make it easier for the GFF to provide footage to players and parents, as required.
We look forward to continue working with the Trim family to help develop the career of one of our most promising young players, building on the many years of support the GFF has provided through regional and national opportunities. We wish her all the best in her future interactions with any professional club and stand ready to engage our network and resources to support this process.
In light of this matter, we would further encourage players and their families to consider collecting and organising their own highlights reels to ensure they have footage on hand to share with interested parties when opportunities arise. The GFF will continue to do what it can to support any footage requests by liaising with rights owners such as Concacaf. However, it is important for players and parents to understand that such requests are carried out according to Concacaf’s capacity to do so, and at its discretion and good will.
We would also urge all players and families to ensure that any expression of interest from, or on behalf of, professional clubs or talent scouts are genuine and legitimate. The GFF stands ready to assist in any such investigation. It is worth remembering that all professional scouts and clubs routinely have access to scouting software, such as WyScout or InStat, which provides access to a global database of match and player footage.
Finally, as an organisation that cares deeply about the welfare of our players, it is deeply regrettable that Mr. Saul would exploit the good faith of a 16-year-old player and her mother to publish such an unsubstantiated story. It beggars belief that Stabroek News elected to run this non-urgent story without waiting for a comment from the GFF, especially given the potentially damaging nature of certain claims which required substantiation. This one-sided story has been shared widely on social media, which has unfairly blemished the reputation of the GFF and encouraged members of the public to express strong negative sentiments towards the current administration.
As a result, this matter is being looked into urgently by our legal team and an official complaint is being lodged with the Guyana Press Association. We trust that the management of Stabroek News will take appropriate disciplinary action to ensure that basic reporting standards are upheld in any future articles by Mr. Saul.
We would kindly ask all our partners in the media to be patient while waiting to receive any comment on stories they are working on, as the GFF is committed to provided full and transparent details related to any media query. However, this can sometimes take longer than we would all like, given the limited capacity and busy schedule of our organisation. While we understand the nature of the news cycle, this may mean that a response is not possible on the same day as the request is received. In any case, other than in very extreme or urgent circumstances, we would argue that the basic principles of good reporting demand the right to reply within the body of any initial news story. We are sure that more professionally-minded members of the media will agree that it is both lazy, bad and unethical journalism to hide behind the line, “Efforts to contact X proved futile”, merely to avoid the professional responsibility of sharing both sides of a story, conducting some basic research, and checking the veracity of any allegations. In the age of fake news and vested media interests, the public and football community deserves better.
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