“Why the resistance?”
Businessman Randy Glasgow is urging Football Association (TTFA) president Williams Wallace to accept the restructuring process currently being imposed by world governing body FIFA. Glasgow is confident that if Wallace remains relevant, in two years he can again become TTFA president.
The head of Randy Glasgow Productions is one of the first non-football voices urging Wallace to accept the FIFA normalisation committee arrangement.
Likewise, in a recent television interview, Clinton Urling, the former chairman of a normalisation committee FIFA imposed on Guyana in 2014, felt T&T should do the same and that normalisation six years ago left Guyanese football in a better place.
Last week, displaced TTFA president Wallace was set to instruct local attorneys to make an appeal before the Court of Arbitration for Sport against FIFA’s decision to dissolve his TTFA executive. But yesterday, he seemed to be having second thoughts.
“The latest position is that we have not made a decision yet about how we are going forward,” Wallace told the Sunday Express.
“We are contemplating all the options available and the possible consequences as a result of those options,” Wallace added.
“Based on that, we have not (yet) filed.”
On Friday, the Switzerland-based Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) issued a release naming businessman Robert Hadad (chairperson); lawyer and Environment Management Authority deputy-chairman Judy Daniel (deputy chairperson) and former National Flour Mills chairman and ex-CEO of JMBB Bank Nigel L Romano (member), as part of a normalisation committee it imposed a week after dissolving the four-month-old Wallace administration.
FIFA stepped in, citing a need to protect its development investments from TTFA creditors. The TTFA has debts approaching TT$60 million; has had its accounts frozen and also faces litigation from several parties. Wallace had given an undertaking to clear the TTFA’s massive burden in two to three years.
Bulk of the debt
Wallace’s executive inherited the bulk of the debt after unseating David John-Williams as TTFA president on November 19, 2019.
Glasgow’s advice is that Wallace remain relevant, while letting FIFA’s process go forward, and reap the benefits down the road.
“Two years is not far away. If you won an election once, you could win twice,“ Glasgow said. “By then all the debts will be paid off and resources needed to move forward will be available.”
Thinking with a businessman’s head, Glasgow feels that the deck is currently stacked against Wallace.
“My advice to TTFA, save your legal fees and cooperate with FIFA and its team,” he said.
Glasgow is convinced that Wallace cannot beat FIFA at its own game.
“Fifa made the rules and only they could alter it, which means you cannot and will never win them,” Glasgow said.
“Think it over chairman Wallace and your team,” Glasgow said. “Let the national restructuring and rebuilding start immediately!”
Likewise, Urling felt that given its tenuous position, Trinidad and Tobago football might benefit greatly from normalisation.
“These normalisation committees should not be feared,” he said. “What you should fear is the member association, the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association being suspended by FIFA.”
Urling felt FIFA will go ahead with the normalisation committee regardless of the CAS ruling.
“And I think everyone in Trinidad football should embrace that process,” he said.
“In two years, if they contest the elections, I don’t see why the shouldn’t (win). If they won four months ago, they stand a good chance in winning it in a year or two years from now, and inherit a better football association, with a new constitution and better processes and systems in place,” Urling added.
“I see this process as a good thing for Trinidad football.”