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Hankinson: RSPL clubs need new approach

Published:Tuesday | January 16, 2018 | 12:00 AMMarc Stamp/Gleaner Writer
Montego Bay United technical director Timothy Hankinson.

American coach Timothy Hankinson said that Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) clubs can take two approaches to ensuring financial sustainability.

A problem facing many local football clubs is that of finding funds to cover the cost of player salaries and upkeep and maintenance costs.

"There are two systems. One way is to develop players, and the other way is to focus on marketing, ticket sales, merchandising, and television rights," Hankinson, who returned to Montego Bay United as technical director last week, told The Gleaner yesterday.

"The last time I was here, there was a discussion about getting corporate support for the clubs in the league. I hope the corporate entities could assist the clubs. Red Stripe is doing a good job, but the clubs need corporate support," he pointed out. There needs to be corporate support to assist the clubs to build," he said.

Looking at Major League Soccer (MLS) in the United States, Hankinson outlined that MLS is a single entity in which each team is owned by the league's investors. The postseason includes 12 teams competing in MLS Cup Play-offs through November and December, culminating in the championship game, MLS Cup.

"A profit from each franchise goes back to the clubs. It is quite a different business structure. Most leagues in the world are run through a proper system," he reasoned.

"In Jamaica it is quite different, so the clubs need a serious approach in order to sustain themselves," Hankinson added.