Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Fair Play: Developments, politics in the beautiful game

(This is the draft for my Fair Play column for Sun.Star Cebu on Jan. 26)
 AFTER the brouhaha over the friendly against Icheon City of Korea, there are two other developments that should be interesting for the UFL and for fans.

One is a little-known league in football-hotbed Bacolod and the other is the plan of former Bacolod representative Monico Puentevella to put up a league for the Visayas and Mindanao.

The Bacolod tournament hit a snag during its finals when the top team lost its key players to UFL duties and have vowed that in the next season, it will bind its players to contracts so it won’t happen again.

That’s a potential conflict, and so is, I think, the planned Vis-min League.
While tournaments such as this is a chance for other players to shine, I don’t think we have that many players in this country who can play regularly in a top-flight league. And if sponsors are involved, as what Monico is planning to do, then teams will be fighting for players.

Football may be experiencing a renaissance in this country but basketball it is not, nor does it have the fraction of the player pool the country’s no. 1 sport has.

And do you know what happens when two leagues fight over fanbase, players, sponsors and publicity?
Ever heard of the Metropolitan Basketball Association?

While I see a lot of potential conflicts with these developments, it doesn’t mean I dont think there won’t be anything good that will come out of this. This would get club football to the provinces, and, perhaps, by doing so, fans there would begin to wonder, “can our local club beat the best clubs in the country?”

If the UFL has dreams or plans of going national, I think now is the time to share its vision with the rest of the PFF and the country. With the way things are, most of the fans and clubs outside of Manila are on the outside looking in, wondering when they’d get a piece of the club football action.

I hope the PFF,  Monico and the Football Alliance can work together to make the UFL become truly national in scope.
Oh well, it’s just a thought.

FUNNY POLITICS. “Why don’t you go to Panaad and play Bacolod teams?” an insider qouted CFA president Richard Montayre telling Loxwood FC representatives when they visited the Philippine Football Federation office last Tuesday.

The insider was more than suprised as Loxwood FC, of course, dropped by Cebu last week to meet with representatives of Queen City United for a planned friendly in Cebu later this year.

Football politics, don’t you just love them?

I just hope politics won’t hinder what Cebuano fans are anticipating—the Loxwood friendly.


Wiking said...

"...have vowed that in the next season, it will bind its players to contracts so it won’t happen again."

Maybe this is good as players can have real contracts with "hopefully" more money involved. I'm all for players getting more for their services, especially the "non stars" the more people can make careers out of soccer the better quality we'll get eventually.

Mike Limpag said...

Wiking. Yep, that's one way of looking at it. Getting more players into pro, or even, semi-pro football, is a good thing

Anonymous said...

Montayre, a political crab in the

Mike Limpag said...

I won't go that far as Montayre led the oust Martinez movement and he's stepping down as CFA president this March. He said he isn't running anymore

Jao Romero said...

bad idea by Fuentebella. It's better if cities or provinces form their own teams and enter them into the UFL to compete. to pull away the dominance of Manila, stadiums must be built for city/province teams so they can host UFL games. then we'd truly have a true football nation wherein teams have home bases instead of renting out one pitch.

the UFL is following the format of PBA which is disastrous in the long run. city-based teams are the way to go in club football. always has been and always will be. get the cities to support UFL teams, build stadiums, and fans will come.