Anguish among KSAFA clubs over no youth football
Chris James, a Barbican Football Club executive, is chastising the Kingston and St Andrew Football Association (KSAFA) clubs, for voting to cancel the Under-13 and Under-15 competitions.
James revealed that at a recent KSAFA meeting to discuss the annual youth competitions, the majority of attending clubs voted against playing the competition because they were ill-prepared and unable to manage the financial burden.
The veteran administrator, however, pointed to the major effort made to get the Major and Super leagues going, while arguing that similar importance should have been placed on the youths.
"A few weeks ago it was brought up. The president threw it out to the clubs and most were not prepared to play. A lot don't have the resources and there's also a resource problem with referees.
"So the thought process was to wait until next season and give everyone time and space to reorganise," James disclosed.
He believes most club leaders are just paying lip service to youth football and development.
"The clubs are all talking but they are not serious. So it's no surprise we are not playing U-13 or U-15 because the majority of the clubs are not prepared. Barbican are always prepared to play youth leagues," he insisted.
He admitted there are clubs with serious youth programmes and commitment. James, however, said many were missing from that meeting and must take some of the blame.
"A lot of clubs did not come to the meeting and we have to be practical. If your people didn't come to represent and the majority say A and there is nobody to say B, then you have to live with it because we live in a democracy," he stated.
Rudolph Speid, Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) technical committee chairman and Cavalier sporting director, is disappointed there may be no competition this year.
"This is the third year there is no competition and we are very disappointed because we were in preparation. We have not been able to play development games and this would have given us an opportunity.
"As a professional football club, development is important to us and this does not do us any favours. They now have to look to next year and hope their development can continue in the schools, who give competition to players," Speid commented.
KSAFA president Wayne Shaw said the decision on the competitions was not final, as they were due to hold another meeting with the clubs next week, before concluding.