Harris: BFA can get over lack of finance
When it comes to football in Barbados, president of the Barbados Football Association, Randy Harris, prefers to see the glass as half-full, and not half-empty.
Harris realizes a lack of financing remains the bugbear for his cash-strapped organisation, but remains very optimistic that Barbados would eventually be able to own a professional franchise when the much talked about Caribbean Professional League does materialize in the near future, but believes his BFA must get its house in order.
Harris made this known yesterday, on the second day of the Soccerex Americas Forum, staged at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre.
“We in the Caribbean have to get really serious about the way we administrate football. We have to believe in it as a business, no more as a recreational activity only,” Harris said yesterday.
The president noted that regional governing body CONCACAF and world governing body FIFA are serious about putting frameworks in place to help associations like the BFA succeed, and it is up to local administrators to grab it and run.
“FIFA and CONCACAF are helping Caribbean countries realize their dreams of running organized associations, so people can see we are capable of running things the way they should be,” Harris explained
“The BFA is working closely with FIFA to make sure our standard or organization is just as good, and eventually better than Europe or anywhere else that plays football. We have the same choices, and the same opportunities, and I believe if we have good governance we will get even more assistance from FIFA,” the president noted.
Harris is quite upbeat about professional football eventually becoming a reality in the Caribbean.
“The hardest thing for pro football in Barbados would be financing. We don’t want to start something that would last only a year or two. We have to look at sustainable development for the game. But I believe that if we can achieve half of the things that we have promised to do over the next two to four years, people will see there is a big difference in football, and that more people will come on board, especially the young people.
“I am really looking forward to good things in football for Barbados in the next few years,” Harris said.
The president spoke at yesterday’s forum during a group discussion titled Expanding Into Football History.
Soccerex Americas Forum is the largest soccer (football) workshop ever held in the Western Hemisphere, and has attracted more than 500 administrators, coaches and even former legends on the field. (BA)