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Caledonia and T&T will benefit from European exodus

Despite criticism from some persons, I want to assure the public that Caledonia AIA and, ultimately, Trinidad and Tobago will benefit from Caledonia’s long term plan in sending players to Finland and Kazakhstan.

How is this possible, you may ask?

Well, firstly the one Trinidad and Tobago player and two Guyanese players that were placed in the Finland Third Division are there to acclimatize to the conditions and move on as soon as their performances prove their worth and opportunities present themselves in the higher divisions.

Photo: DirecTV W Connection defender Kern Cupid (left) screens the ball away from Neal & Massy Caledonia AIA winger Trayon Bobb. Bobb, a Guyana international, is set to move to the Finland Third Division. (Courtesy Photos868)
Photo: DirecTV W Connection defender Kern Cupid (left) screens the ball away from Neal & Massy Caledonia AIA winger Trayon Bobb.
Bobb, a Guyana international, is set to move to the Finland Third Division.
(Courtesy Wired868)

We want our players to play in the top leagues in Europe but, at the moment, they will not get the work permits to do same. However, if they can establish themselves in other leagues in Europe in two or three years they will be able to graduate into some of the big leagues.

Could you my brother imagine a journey of a thousand miles beginning with one step?

Regarding Caledonia AIA and myself benefitting financially, first of all we will not receive a cent from this first move by the players. The players alone will benefit from sign-on bonuses and salaries at their new clubs.

Caledonia will get paid, God willing, only when these guys progress and move on to bigger and better things. We are patient.

What is wrong with Pro League clubs exploring new markets for players when it can benefit the clubs and the players? Who is helping San Juan Jabloteh right now with funding to continue the work they have done for over 35 years?

Do you know what we, the club owners, put into the teams to ensure that the Pro League survives and players get a salary? How does Darryl Mahabir, the owner of North East Stars, benefit from paying out over $150,000 a month? Where is his income from football other than if he does like W Connection and gets a player out to Europe?

Photo: North East Stars acting captain Cornell Glen (centre) takes the Toyota Classic trophy from Pro League CEO Dexter Skeene. But is it enough to justify the outlay of club owner Darryl Mahabir? (Courtesy Wired868)
Photo: North East Stars acting captain Cornell Glen (centre) takes the Toyota Classic trophy from Pro League CEO Dexter Skeene.
But is it enough to justify the outlay of club owner Darryl Mahabir?
(Courtesy Wired868)

I am not above criticism but get your facts right about me, star. My club intends to use this partnership with GMG (Goal Management Group) to help us in our work in the Morvant/Laventille and other depressed communities.

Instead of you coming up with an idea without any knowledge of our project, you dare attack it and attack my credibility. You want to compare what you have done for local football to what my life work can prove?

You, Mr Clarke, dare say I will undermine Trinidad and Tobago football. I went to Guyana not for my own self but to show that right we have people who are capable. It was not personal.

And about the distance players will have to travel, this is a reality that professionals in every part of the world especially in Africa and South America have to face in an effort to make a better living. The earning life of a player is short and they know that travel is a major part of the profession.

In the last 18 months, I travelled to over 23 countries and it takes a toll on you and your family but I have to do it to make my living in the game.

Photo: Jamaal Shabazz (right) has a word with Colombia and ex-Argentina coach Jose Pekerman during his stint as Guyana coach. (Courtesy Golden Jaguars Media)
Photo: Jamaal Shabazz (right) has a word with Colombia and ex-Argentina coach Jose Pekerman during his stint as Guyana coach.
(Courtesy Golden Jaguars Media)

I cannot sit down and evangelize like you brothers and wait for things to fall for me. I have to work hard.

Finally, the TTFF did not pay my way to Europe. And also, at present, I am coaching with the senior team along with Hutson Charles without a contract from the TTFF. That is still being worked out but I do my work all the same. And I tell you this if I see this arrangement as being negative to the players the club or local football, I would not pursue it.

The truth about all of us is bad enough so do not lie on me to makes it worse, Mr Clarke and Mr Coward, shucks, I mean Mr Anonymous, etc.

Say anything about me, I am open to criticism. But speak the truth, my brothers.

 

Read initial criticism from anonymous poster and letter writer here

 

Densill Theobald tells Wired868 about his own move to India here

About Jamaal Shabazz

Jamaal Shabazz
Jamaal Shabazz is the Guyana National Senior Team head coach, founder and technical director of Morvant Caledonia United and ex-head coach of the Trinidad and Tobago men's and women's senior teams. He helped steer T&T to second place at the 2012 Caribbean Cup, Guyana to an unprecedented 2014 World Cup qualifying semifinal berth and Caledonia to its first CFU Club Championship title in 2012. He is a member of the Jamaat-al-Muslimeen group that staged an unsuccessful coup in Trinidad in 1990.

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2 comments

  1. jamaal you noted, ”the one Trinidad and Tobago player and two Guyanese players you placed in the Finland Third Division are there to acclimatize to the conditions and move on as soon as their performances prove their worth and opportunities present themselves in the higher divisions”

    my question is how is this possible when these players are playing at lower level? imagine playing in pro league in your own country and then being shipped to another country to play with a lower level team. if it were me i would definitely be concerned even though there is a claim that this is just for “ACCLIMATIZATION”. i’m sure it must raise concerns for players and their families. so please Jamaal, next time explain to your players and secondly ensure they are contented and happy with the arrangements made.

  2. jamaal, only God know the intention in ppl’s hearts. having said that i am glad you cleared your name and stated clearly the reason why you sent your players to foreign countries. however i think in the future when you decide to do such, please ensure both before and after you leave that your players are not getting a raw deal with the arrangements.