Don't blame Russell Latapy for being unavailable for the Gold Cup. The fault lies squarely on the shoulders of the administration. Watching the TTFA in action is like getting your teeth pulled. A close source said to me that the folks at the TTFA are good people but have no clue of how to conduct things. Case in point Russell Latapy. The schedule for the Gold Cup came out about early to mid November. Even though it was tentative the TTFA should have faxed the respective clubs to give them a idea of the time frame that they would have been working with. This would have prevented negotiations just two weeks before the Gold Cup. For a major tournament like the Gold Cup you should have all your ducks lined up beak to tail months before you take the field. Back to Russell the TTFA insisted on him to pay for his ticket from Lisbon to Oakland. The TTFA stated that they don't have the money. While Russell probably makes the money to pay for it on principle Russell should not pay for his ticket. Sadly but true one of Russell's friends had to e-mail me to find out when the Gold Cup was going to take place and what the schedule was. The reason: he could not get any word from the TTFA.
It was only last week that Aston Villa management heard of the Gold Cup schedule from the TTFA and that only when Yorke happened to mention it at team practice. Late last week they received official word from the TTFA. The TTFA up till last week didn't know the status of Yorke. Dwight Yorke was given a waiver by the team to recover from his injury he suffered a few weeks ago.But Yorke has been playing for the last week. He started his first game of the new year on Wednesday and played on Saturday. Once again the TTFA have shot wide on an open net.
Once again Trinidad and Tobago is walking into a major tournament without it's best players. During the Christmas vacation a few young players from U.S schools were in T&T and unable to attend any training sessions. They could not find out where the training sessions were and no one told them that the team was training. Another player left out was T&T's best young goalie Kelvin Jack. He was left in Prescott, Arizona unable to come to Trinidad for training because the administration could not come up with the airfare.
Up till last week Clint Marcelle didnot know where he was going to stay, what the schedule was and where the tournament was going to be held. It was his understanding and backed up by the higher ups in the TTFA that the tournament was going to be held in Los Angeles. Eventhough the tournament is being been held in Oakland, the TTFA still made palns for Los Angeles. Up to Sunday Clint still had no idea where the tournament was going to be held.
So while T&T goes into the Gold Cup without it's key players one man is preparing to collect his severance pay. Coach St. Clair is the right man for the job as head coach. He is the only coach to lead T&T to the under 20 World Championships in 1991. However, the general idea floating around is that St. Clair has an axe hanging over his head if he doesn't get pass Honduras and Mexico and into the second round versus Brazil. I call that totally unfair.
Why am I bitching and complaining at this time? I want accountability at the top!!!! Several months ago when Argentina was not playing well in the World Cup qualifiers, the head coach and team officials were called before the Congress of Argentina to explain why the team was not performing well. Accountability is what we need now! Finally, aren't I supposed to expose the positive aspects of Trinidad and Tobago football. I do expose the positive aspects but when I see something that is wrong I will tell you. The thing about Trinidad and Tobago football is that it carries on and produces talent inspite of the lack of administration at the top.
CHANGE IS NEEDED NOW!!!!!!!