Slight delay at JFF technical centre
Michael Ricketts, president of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF), says that construction work on the association's 24-room technical centre on the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI) is set for completion at the end of June following a slight delay.
Ricketts admitted to The Sunday Gleaner that the facility, the JFF/UWI/Captain Horace Burrell Centre of Excellence, which is being built through the assistance of FIFA at a cost US$620,000 ($78.7 million), is taking a bit longer than expected and will miss its May 31 deadline.
"It is about 85 per cent ready because it has taken a little longer than we have anticipated," said Ricketts, who did not go into details on the cause of the delay. "We were looking at a deadline at the end of this month, which is highly unlikely, but I would reckon that in another month, it will be ready.
"This is kind of holding us back a bit, in terms of our programmes, because the house cannot accommodate as many players as we want, and once the girls are there, the men will have to go somewhere else," he further pointed out.
The JFF boss added that the federation is close to acquiring all the relevant appliances and furniture and is expecting this to be done in time to house all the national teams as soon as construction has been completed.
"We have made application for furniture, and that is, basically, almost ready, and so once the building is ready, then we will move to have it thoroughly and properly equipped, and then we will be ready to go," said Ricketts.
"We are hoping that in another three months, it will be completed, furnished, and ready to go. We have acquired gym equipment, a lawnmower, and all the necessary facilities to make it complete and ready to serve our national teams," he said.
Ricketts also stated that his association had made representation for further funding to assist with the construction of a coaches' quarters at the facility.
"We have applied to FIFA for a grant to put on coaching quarters because we think that the coaches area should be better equipped, and so we have applied for funding to extend the facility and, hopefully, that will happen later on this year," Ricketts said.