Football! Is It On The Right Track Or Not?

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Football is the game on the doorstep and lips of everyone West, East, North and South. Young and old, boys and girls, men and women across the globe play, watch and talk about it all the time.

Football has grown past every sport at every corner of the World. Having gone to that level in most countries, The Gambia is not an exception. But is the much loved and played game really what it should be in The Gambia as it is in other countries? Recently, The Gambia has written its name in the register of football globally by being present in two FIFA World Youth Championships - Under 17 and Under 20 level.

 Again with all these achievements, has the foundation of glory been set since the formation of our national association? Sampling the opinion of most football enthusiasts on the issue. Many believed that, there has been progress whilst others argued that our game is crawling and needs immediate intervention.  To my opinion/assessment of the game I loved, played, manage and devote most of my time to reading, watching and listening. I want to join the school of thought that believes that our game is crawling and therefore needs crutches to start working. And with that I base my arguments on the following points

1. Communities’ reluctance to allocate land for playing grounds.
2. Insufficient funds available to govern and develop football which is expensive.
3. Insufficient publicity of our game compared to the publicity given to international football in our media houses.
4. No standard technical training centres to mould our already skilled players at a tender age,
5. Limited trained and qualified technicians and administrators to take care of our game,

However, having being in this game of football throughout my life despite my age, I’m with the conviction that if:

1. There are enough and accessible playing grounds owned by the communities,
2.Our game has the necessary publicity it needs both in the print and electronic media.
3. The game is well funded by the government and private sector.
4. The so-called football academies are transformed into standard technical training centres in the bid to develop the technical awareness of our young players,
5. Our technicians and administrators acquire the requisite training and
6.There is constant leagues for youth players of age 12-17,

very soon The Gambia will start rubbing shoulders with the likes of Ivory Coast, Nigeria Egypt, Cameroon as well as other great footballing nations in The World.

Author: By Sang Mendy, Mass Communication Student, Stratford College of Management, Gambia
Source: The Point