The Thirsty solution

The ongoing Thirsty Cup has partially quenched Cebu's appetite for football and has showed that Cebu really needs a bigger pitch--a football only pitch--now.

The rains has rendered the field muddy and with hundreds of players walking to and from the pitch, the mud has been transferred to the rubber oval, which is in an equally sad (if not sadder) state than the field.

Again, football festivals may bring the "fiesta" atmosphere to football but it still can't compare to the full 11-a-side match. Still 15-minute games is a whole lot better than waiting for a Cup that wouldn't come.

Still, here is a wish list for the next Thirsty Cup.

1.) Scrap the Men's Open, Boys 17, Boys 12.

Players in these divisions don't have a shortage of tournaments, they have the Men's Open (provided the CebuFA holds one this year), the Cesafi, Milo and Cebu City Olympics for the Boys 17 and the Milo and Cebu City Olympics for the Boys 12. Plus of course, the festivals.

Less teams means more playing time for the young kids and girls who don't get a lot of tournaments. More kids mean more moms and dads and grandparents enjoying football.

Conversation I heard on the pitch.

"Did you win?"

"How can we win if we don't have enough time to play?"

2.) Attract the weekend warriors.

Call Center companies have their own teams a division for them or for the weekend warriors could entice them to compete and they don't have to be humiliated by meeting collegiate champs in the Men's Open.

3.) Post the results.

It's good that the organizers have put up banners with the schedules, but they could have done better by putting the scores of each game there. (Yes, they have a lot to do, but one guy assigned to solely do this could do the job). That way, players, know where they stand.

4.) Ban smoking in the pitch.

Yeah, I light up once a minute, but I do so in the corner.

5.) More referees.

Players complain of playing until 11:30 p.m., well the guys in black are there in the field from 7 in the morning till 12 midnight.

6.) Show the past.

A nice big screen, or a TV, that shows RCTV's clips of previous Thirsty Cups would be a big hit.

7.) Invite the RP team, RP coaches.

The Thirsty Cup gathers some skillful youngsters who rarely get a chance to strut their wares in Manila, where the scouts are abound. Inviting them here for the Thirsty Cup would be a chance for these unsung talents to be discovered. (A note, high schoolers from San Roque who played in a girls tournament in San Carlos got scholarship offers from Ateneo, UST and another school in Manila whose name escapes me as early as when they in were 2nd, first year high school.

8.) Scrap the MVP award.

This has been my pet peeve all this time, an MVP award for a football tournament? There is no EM VEE PEE in football. The best striker who can score 10 goals in a game can't win a match if his team can't play defense. The best keeper who stops every shot with a flick of a finger can't win the game if his striker can't score on an open goal. The best passer's pass is meaningless if the recipient can't control the ball even if his life depends on it.

Football is not basketball, there is no MVP. If Thirsty wants to hand out an individual award then better make it a sportsmanship award.

These are just suggestions, mind you.  Of all the festivals in Cebu I rank Thirsty No. 1 for the field it attracts and its history.

(A footnote. It's the Thirsty Cup, but is it just me, or was there NO single Thirsty stand at CCSC?)


ronaldo said…
hi mike

football festivals (not just thirsty) is the weekend warrior's answer to his prayers. it's his or her chance to play (with a certain degree of valid competitiveness) twice or thrice a year. my suggestion would be is banning active collegiate players but retaining the mens open.

with the lack and/or absence of full size tournaments, festivals in cebu has evolved from being marketing concepts/tactics or small-income generating ventures to becoming anticipated competitive events. thirsty (in it's original concept) was meant to be a FESTIVAL in the truest meaning of the word - fun-filled and festive (remember the giant ballon man in the first thirsty cup).

unfortunately, the absence of real tournaments now sees coaches, players and parents arguing and/or complaining minute problems that usually are reserved for 11 a side competitions. i pity festival organizers who have to answer has to answer these demands. clean fun has unfortunately given way to the demand for competitive games. yup, perhaps having the festivals cater primarily to the younger age groups would be ideal but in tournament-less cebu, this wouldn't be considered acceptable.

DB United (Alumni)FC has already organized several tournaments/festivals (field and futsal) for the Call Center companies the past years as well as 2 MEPZ festivals. and yes, they have their own footballing community (that one-legged goalie is an inspiration to watch).

BTW, the thirsty booth is right beside the swimming pool. and about lighting up a stick or two - do what i do - go to the end of the track and field beside the city central building where they have their open storage area. you can still catch glimpses of the games while having your nicotine fix. just offer the guard at that end a stick or two.
Santiago Muñez said…
Last Thirsty Inter-Call (2006), there was only PS and Sykes. This year, its confirmed that Teletech and eTel has their own teams. Im sure if invited Wats, Convergys, Qualfon, and all call centers (which contributes to our country's income) can come up with their own.

HOPE we can have an inter-call tourney.
footballcrazy said…
It was announced during the last Thirsty Cup that the European Chamber (ECCP) will be holding a one day football festival on April 12 at the CIS grounds. All companies who are members of this association can join and field their employees-regular and contractual. Interested parties can contact ECCP.
Kiddo said…
Just wanted to comment on Item Number 2, setting up an entirely different division for the call center companies or the so called weekend warriors.
we join these tourneys/festivals so we can play with the best and most organized teams. aside from that, we have proven that we can do succeed by sweeping our bracket and more so reaching the semis w/o conceeding a single goal during regulation. Call it luck but hey the biggest reason is we want to have FUN by not necessarily having it easy.


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