Indian Under 17 team gave a real scare against United States of America and narrowly lost against Columbia in the ongoing Under 17 FIFA World Cup in India. While back home, in the Maldives, our President of Olympic Committee and defacto President of Football Association of Maldives, Mohamed Shaveedh blasted his own Maldives Olympic Committee General Secretary, Marzooq for a like on a tweet by former national team player & former national team manager, Ibrahim Nooraddeen.
Nooraddeen was just asking the question “Where is our football is heading? Disappointed with our sports administrators”
— Ibrahim Noordeen (@IbrahimNoordeen) September 24, 2017
Do we clap hands and keep on praising the sports administrators when our junior sides concede 40 goals in 6 matches in AFC Qualification matches? Maybe we should clap our hands when we are knocked out from the best possible scenario for qualifying to the AFC Asian Cup?
When everyone started to raise their concerns, Football Association of Maldives held a 4-hour session with the so-called administrators (friends of FAM) who have continuously laid us to a failure in the last 8 years. Its like asking our friends to come and pose for a photo when we want to show some solidarity! They have done a brilliant job in obtaining media headlines. But what’s the reality?
FAM president in ‘writing’, Bassam Adeel Jaleel said that they have assigned a term of reference with the junior side coaches, Shaazlee and Ihsaan (Saanthi) and said they are not looking for short term patches and looking for long term solutions. That’s a very good initiative if there is proper planning. National Junior sides went into International matches without any practice matches. Both the coaches highlighted that this is the first competitive matches for the junior sides. I am not sure that this can be called good planning! Maybe I am wrong!
Leave that aside! The national team were left to train in the Maldives and then played friendly against third division teams of the region while the other teams managed to get friendly matches with competitive sides. When we played against Oman last night, our national team didn’t get a SINGLE international friendly match!
National Team Coach Stewart also was forced to accept the reality and noted that FAM has to learn from the mistakes in preparation and learn not to repeat it! If its good planning, New Radiant’s reserve keeper would not be called to represent our national team within 24 hours of the game, because FAM failed to register a new goal keeper within the allocated time frame.
Some might say, I am all fuming and doesn’t show a solution! There can’t be many solutions, when Football Association of Maldives elections are held to gain a vote in Maldives Olympic Committee elections and moreover a seat in the AFC Executive Committee. As our local proverb goes “Kachchah elhi bingaleh kechchaa hamayah negiyas onnaanee kachchasheve” or as English proverb goes “A bad beginning makes a bad ending”, we are enroute to a huge disaster!
Coming back to the game of India vs USA and India vs Columbia, I have given all hopes of us, clinching another South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) Championship. Who knows! India might send their Under 17 team instead of the Under 21 side that they sent before to take part in the tournament, while we might be struggling to cope with Nepal and Bangladesh.
Finally, an advice to Ahmed Marzooq: please do not ever give a like to this opinion post. You might get fired! We need you at the helm of Maldives Olympics Committee for our youth!