KINGSTON, Jamaica – The Jamaican government is looking at ways in which it can support the national football program, especially as it relates to the Reggae Boyz’ bid to qualify for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa.
Prime Minister Bruce Golding has asked Minister of Information, Culture, Youth and Sport, Olivia Grange, to meet with the executive of the JFF to look at their program of activity and make recommendations as to what are the areas of need and what kind of support the government can provide.
The decision was taken on Thursday (Jan. 10) during a courtesy call at Jamaica House by Captain Horace Burrell along with Technical Director Professor Rene Simoes and other members of the JFF Board and executive.
In welcoming the leadership of the JFF, Mr. Golding said he expects Professor Simoes to take the Reggae Boyz to the next World Cup, adding that he wanted to see a highly motivated team and better coordination among players on the field of play. He said the euphoria surrounding the game had waned a bit but strongly believed this could be rebuilt. He said the JFF could count on the support of the government in its bid for a place in the World Cup.
In the meantime, Captain Burrell has disclosed that Jamaica has been selected as the host country for the 2008 Caribbean Cup scheduled for December. He said Jamaica will also commence its bid for a place in the 2010 World Cup starting with qualifying matches in June.
Captain Burrell said the JFF is looking forward to a very exciting year starting with a friendly international match against Costa Rica on February 6th. He said Professor Simoes has hinted at the need for some 20 international friendly matches, some of which would be played in Jamaica. He said the JFF was encouraged by the renewed enthusiasm for the game as was displayed during the two friendly games against El Salvador and Guatemala.
Other members of the JFF executive who attended the courtesy call were Horace Reid, General Secretary, Howard McIntosh, Board Member and Chairman of the Marketing Committee and Leighton McKnight, Chairman of the Finance Committee. Mrs. Dawn Heron, acting Administrative Director of INSPORTS was also in attendance.