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Shaka supports Oliver; slams “desperately untrue” Central statement 

ESPN football analyst and ex-2006 World Cup stand-out Shaka Hislop has emphatically distanced himself from former Football Players Association of Trinidad and Tobago (FPATT) colleagues, Brent Sancho and Kevin Harrison, as he slammed their treatment of ex-Central FC captain and star midfielder, Marvin Oliver, as “unwarranted” and “unfair.”

Photo: W Connection attacker Jomal Williams (left) tries to keep the ball from Central FC veteran and captain Marvin Oliver during the 2015 Caribbean Cup final. (Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)
Photo: W Connection attacker Jomal Williams (left) tries to keep the ball from Central FC veteran and captain Marvin Oliver during the 2015 Caribbean Cup final.
(Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)

Yesterday, Sancho and Harrison, the Central managing director and operations manager respectively, issued a statement in defence of the club’s treatment of Oliver, which claimed that their termination letter on Tuesday did not mean he was sacked and threatened to fine the player or fire him a second time.

The Central release also alleged that the club helped keep Oliver out of jail and build his house. Oliver denied both allegations.

Hislop described the letter as “disconcerting” and a “desperately untrue” personal attack on the veteran player. The former FPATT president also revealed that he has provided support for Oliver since his dismissal and would help defend the playmaker against his former World Cup teammate, Sancho.

“Over the last couple of days I have spoken to both Marvin and his counsel both individually and in conference on several occasions,” said Hislop, in a media statement, “and am confident of his representation.

“On a personal note, there were a number of elements to Central FC’s release that I found disconcerting, which has prompted me to writing.

Photo: Former World Cup 2006 standout Shaka Hislop now works as an analyst for global sport channel, ESPN.
Photo: Former World Cup 2006 standout Shaka Hislop now works as an analyst for global sport channel, ESPN.

“Firstly, the release was little more than a personal attack on a player who has represented them to the best of his ability since the first minute of Central FC’s first game in existence.

“Added to that, those personal attacks were unwarranted, unfair, desperately untrue, totally irrelevant and serve only as a distraction to the facts of the case.

“My continued advice to Marvin would be to maintain his silence, refraining from further comment, and await instruction from his legal counsel.”

(The following is the full media statement from Shaka Hislop, in defence of former Central player Marvin Oliver):

I’m writing in response to Central FC’s release regarding the ongoing issue with Marvin Oliver.

Photo: Comunicaciones midfielder Jorge Aparacio (left) grapples with Central FC star Marvin Oliver during 2015 CONCACAF Champions League action. (Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)
Photo: Comunicaciones midfielder Jorge Aparacio (left) grapples with Central FC star Marvin Oliver during 2015 CONCACAF Champions League action.
(Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)

I had been aware of the developing issue between Central FC and Marvin since Tuesday, when he was presented with a letter by Mr Dale Saunders.

The letter, on Central FC letterhead, was minacious and definite in its intention, regardless of the attempts by the club to readdress.

From the outset, my belief was that the letter presented to Marvin by Mr Saunders made this issue a legal one.

To his full credit, Marvin had already sensibly contacted legal counsel, hence his silence on the matter. Over the last couple of days I have spoken to both Marvin and his counsel both individually and in conference on several occasions, and am confident of his representation.

On a personal note, there were a number of elements to Central FC’s release that I found disconcerting, which has prompted me to writing.

Photo: Former Sport Minister and Central FC managing director and chairman Brent Sancho. (Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)
Photo: Former Sport Minister and Central FC managing director and chairman Brent Sancho.
(Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)

Firstly, the release was little more than a personal attack on a player who has represented them to the best of his ability since the first minute of Central FC’s first game in existence. Added to that, those personal attacks were unwarranted, unfair, desperately untrue, totally irrelevant and serve only as a distraction to the facts of the case.

My continued advice to Marvin would be to maintain his silence, refraining from further comment, and await instruction from his legal counsel.

On a separate note, it’s encouraging to know that the (re)launch of a Players’ Association will have Central FC’s full and unequivocal support.

 

Editor’s Note: Click HERE to read Central FC’s statement on Marvin Oliver situation. 

About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the CEO and Editor at Wired868.com and a journalist with over 20 years experience at several Trinidad and Tobago and international publications including Play the Game, World Soccer, UK Guardian and the Trinidad Express.

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59 comments

  1. The statement “I will accede to your request and arrange for your release effective today.”, combined with the conduct of the club in debarring Marvin from training with the team can only be interpreted in one way. They can’t even claim that they were suspending him. The club’s management is being dishonest.

  2. everybody can see that its as clear as daylight

  3. Central not apologizing for a thing!

    These hard stones men have not a drop of decency in them.

    They can hide behind a g-string panty

  4. Just over 48 hours with no attempted character assassination of Marvin Oliver? Thank God for small mercies. :-/
    Sacking your former captain, who was there as the club won every trophy in Central’s Cabinet, in such an insensitive manner is one thing…
    But then to go out trying to make him unemployable after three and a half years of service? That was even worse.
    Hope Central eventually accepts that it behaved poorly and apologises and pays the man up so he can go in peace. That’s just my personal opinion.

  5. Muddy waters ahead for Brent and Company with their football politricks .

  6. Just as I suspected. Central FC thru it’s bungling and vindictiveness has just earned itself a lawsuit. Wrongful termination of employment, loss of earnings, defamation, character assassination, slander etc. I thought his failed attempt as a politician and his unmasking as a cheat when he presented false papers for his Range Rover would have taught the fake dread something but obviously not. Make no mistake, Marvin will win this.

  7. No mango…talk the talk brethren. Can’t stop now.

  8. Shaka Hislop is one of the most humble and honest persons that I have met in my travels, I respect his word and believe them.

  9. After Brent Sancho’s foray into mainstream politics, aligning himself with the most corrupt,and vindictive government ever to occupy the corridors of power in Trinidad and Tobago, Shaka Hislop’s communique on the matter does not come as a surprise to me.

  10. Lasana I have not been able to keep up with all the details of this matter however I keep reading a number of inconsistencies in the conduct of the club’s management. Who do they believe they can deceive? As an example, I just completed reading an article on page 38 of today’s Newsday where Marvin is being told that he is being required inter alia to report for training. But didn’t they debar him from training a few days ago and submitted a dismissal letter to him? They cannot expect to have 2 bites of the cherry. They may have breached the required protocol and that leaves room for Marvin to challenge the status of their actions if he so wishes. But they can’t claim that they have not in fact dismissed him.

  11. Earl oh Form spare me the soccer.

  12. I hope people can now connect the dots with Sancho. Terry suffered their abuse of power and their malicious lies of a completely fabricated story. They threw vranes and Ross Russell under the bus . Now Marvin Oliver is being victimized. Would be interesting to see if Vance Gabriel is enjoying all this negative publicity… it’s about time Sancho gets what he deserves.

  13. ttfa and pfl aint going and do nothing cause being an owner he is on the board of directors in the pfl and ttfa have no juricdiction over them so nothing is going 2 be done by either body

  14. Scotty Ranking

    Does Central FC have anyone with legal or communications training advising the ownership *before* they send out correspondences of this nature? If they don’t, they should. If they do the situation is even worse!
    Whether Central FC contributed one bag of cement to Marvin Oliver’s house-building project is not an issue and should never have come into the public domain via this manner. Their response to the media coverage of their ill-conceived and high-handed actions have shown how petty and low they are willing to sink just to hit back in the public domain.
    It seems to me that, having sipped so heartily from the PP’s jug of Kool Aid, Sanko is still feeling intoxicated from the libations. Putting people’s private concerns into the public domain – disparagingly so to boot – reeks of unprofessionalism on the part of Central FC, suggesting an immaturity that is greatly disturbing indeed.

  15. It is like Jack Warner all over again. Does Sancho dem own Marvin because dey fix his house

  16. I don’t even know where to start with this entire debacle. I will say this though, the unprofessional manner displayed by too many administrators in the football and sporting fraternity as a whole is appalling. Players are always at their mercy and it needs to stop.

  17. Shaka is a boss, class is class Andre Debari Sooklal

  18. Shaka, PURE CLASS!
    Lasana, stay “militant” we like the results
    “I still believe that if your aim is to change the world, journalism is a more immediate short-term weapon.”
    – Tom Stoppard

  19. Sancho is power hungry, greedy and like his Rnglush sidekick very unsavory.

  20. Government still support professional team even when they act very unprofessional?

  21. Let us see what the League (TT Pro League) and TTFF stand for.

  22. Action must be taken now, the league cannot stand by and watch this happen to players within their structure. Owners actig like players are cattle.

  23. It was done slyly and it passed without comment. I don’t know that his other players ever found out.
    I didn’t know if to believe it at the time. But then I saw him presented watching the last training session and always wondered what he was doing there.
    But, honestly, I didn’t press the issue at the time. Maybe I should have. But if he denied it, it would have been one person’s word against another’s.

  24. That is snake like behaviour. So nobody didn’t blast him for that. I realise in life and early rebuke could help people.

  25. When the players had their very first strike action during Hannibal Najjar’s stint as coach, I was told that–when they realised the team was going to play the match with the players–Sancho went secretly and tried to get to play behind the backs of the players he was standing up alongside.
    I couldn’t confirm that but it came from a good source. At the time, I thought maybe it was more an error of youth than a character flaw.
    But there were a few signs like that over the years.

  26. Seriously Lasana he had previous!! I would have to give credence to what David is saying as power itself won’t corrupt but the lack of Character will expose the bad traits these guys possibly had to surface. Shameful.

  27. Again hence the reason why the Trinidad & Tobago Soccer Players Association needs to be up and running in our sweet country to defend our players rights eh, look how many years I have been calling for this eh, how many more of our players both our national players men/women and our professional players must go thru this madness with some of these bootleg Owners, Managers, and Coaches eh. Them really good yes.

  28. Uncle Jack did warn we about Sancho !! but we believed the dread lock rasta lol

  29. I suppose the signs were always there when I think about it Ivor. Even dating back to when he was a player.

  30. Lasana it seems that power has corrupted these guys. Their memory seems short or they have seemed to have suffered some type of amnesia. I remember these guys fighting Jack for their money. It is a serious lack of character and integrity to then turn around and so something like this. If this is the example of the future administrators of football in Trinidad we in as much trouble if not more than when Jack Warner was around. In fact Jack must be using a ‘Jedi mind trick’ on Sancho and the Central FC management. ??

    • Them thing doh corrupt people! unless they was always corrupted….so i don’t think sancho has changed, but is being his self..which very few has been able to see!! but thankfully by the power or slight Minister post power before..we finally saw him for who he really is.

  31. And the knockout punch article – Let em have it L! Lasana Liburd

  32. Sancho sitting on d white line on d road and swinging his legs with this one yes

  33. Does the pro league have a disciplinary committee to deal with misbehaviour by club owners?

  34. TTFA started an investigation into Sancho and Harrison. Or at least a probe made that recommendation to the board.
    We have a new president in charge now and it would be interesting to see how David John Williams treats with that.

  35. Way to step up Shaka! I guess now we have a militant journalist and a militant former national player…
    Waiting on a militant administrator to join the mix.

  36. Big forward for Oliver, but can it really hurt them? They already seem to operate ‘above the law’ with no real consequences.

  37. look how the masks have fallen na hmmmmm

  38. Lasana.. You know I spoke with you privately about this whole episode. I find it shocking beyond comprehension Central FC reasoning and statement. They need to retract all the hogwash they released and apologise to Marvin immediately. Let’s cut the crap.. They are 100% wrong; full stop. How can they sack him then talk about fining him? I’m desperately disappointed, almost embarrassed with the way Marvin has been treated. Central FC DO NOT have a leg to stand on or a plausible explanation for this utter nonsense.. I haven’t spoken to Marvin for years but one thing is certain.. To be playing competitively at 41 in sweltering heat is impressive. He must eat right and take care of his body.. He is dedicated to his craft. Without doubt I believe Marvin side of the story. Why? Because Central’s unprofessional and desperately idiotic statement defies logic. I just couldn’t believe what I was reading.. If I was a lawyer I would be licking my lips.

  39. Support is coming ….. people are seeing Sancho for what he is …. Kevin Harrison, Dale Saunders and the rest.