Letters to the Editor

Advice to Whitmore, Ricketts

Monday, April 16, 2018

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Dear Editor,

I wish to offer a word of advice to a very gifted player and current national football coach Theodore Whitmore and the very dedicated president of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) Michael Ricketts.

Whitmore would be well advised to take care in enduring that he doesn't bite off more than he can chew. His performance to date has been lukewarm, but acceptable, taking into consideration the variables at hand.

Whitmore is still a relatively young man; there is still so much more to be learned, to see, to experience as a coach, and more critically, an international coach. In this highly demanding, complex and dynamic game of football — with all the passion and emotion it evokes — you are as good as your last match and inherently pressured. I personally have not yet seen a truly effective strategy or system of play from Whitmore's arsenal to date; a confident style telling us we can compete with the big guns now. What I have observed is that the team under his charge appears to be playing instinctively.

Football is a multi-billion-dollar, international industry. Handled properly, it can significantly contribute to Jamaica's gross domestic product (GDP) and create social harmony.

President Ricketts must be reminded that he is not being asked to get the unit airborne, he is the 'captain' of a craft that is in flight, at an acceptable tragectory; the expectation is are that he takes it higher. This can only be achieved if we are able to acquire the best coach available to put in charge of the national football programme — a coach with impeccable credentials, international experience, and the best we can afford. The template is there in the archives of the JFF; take it out, brush it off, and engage it.

The JFF must ask the Government and the private sector for help to stimulate and grow the football industry. Ignore the loose arguments making the rounds in football circles and the wider Jamaica that says “ white man coach got that, so black man coach must get same”; we passed that juncture decades ago. So we must refuse to go back there.

Don't be intimidated by coaches who wrap themselves in the national flag to garner support. To be blunt, there is no local coach at present that has the capacity to guide Jamaica's football programme to fulfil its true potential as an earning industry; none.

Dalgalish Henry

President

Meadforest Football Club

dalgalishja@gmail.com

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