Sat | Dec 10, 2016

Wide interest in franchise system, says JFF boss

Published:Sunday | September 7, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Captain Horace Burrell - File

Leighton Levy, Sunday Gleaner Writer

There has been a lot of expressed interest from parties - both local and overseas - who want to be franchise holders in the new system being proposed by the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF).

This, as the JFF continues to proceed with their ambitious plans of overhauling the way club football is played in Jamaica by introducing a franchise system that will result in a move away from the current league system.

This is according to JFF President Captain Horace Burrell, who, at the launch of the LIME Super Cup, revealed that football's governing body will be proceeding with plans to put in place a new system of operation about a year from now.

"As far as I
know, many. .... I mean it's overwhelming," said Captain Burrell while
responding to questions about whether there were parties interested in
taking ownership of the proposed franchises. "Interest has been [shown]
from all sectors, overseas as well as local, and that is what makes it
so very interesting. In the end everyone is going to be
happy."

SOME CLUBS RESISTANT

Some
parties within the local fraternity are still to buy into what Captain
Burrell and the JFF are selling as it relates to the proposed franchise
system. Several clubs within the Kingston and St Andrew Football
Association, especially, have been resistant to the changes but Captain
Burrell said they are being engaged in the ongoing process of
change.

"Once there is a new initiative not everyone
will agree. The stakeholders have been engaged but whenever there are
changes that is expected, so the JFF is not daunted by the resistance
coming from some quarters, but by and large the football fraternity has
bought into us having changes because football in its current form is
not sustainable. We need to stop beating around the bush, we need to
have changes," the JFF boss said.

A franchise
committee has been set up to work out the details of the proposed
changes and a team of experts from Major League Soccer and the North
American Soccer League is to arrive in the island shortly to help with
the process. Together, they will start to ink in the details of the
changes that are expected to come on stream in
2015.

"There is still some time," Captain Burrell
said. "I expect in short order that the discussions will be put again to
the executive committee of the JFF, who will sign off on everything,
but by and large in time the franchise committee will have to report
their findings to the executive committee who will then put things in
place for implementation."