Fri | Jul 23, 2021

JPL teams brace for squad challenges

Clubs anticipate issues due to lack of transfer opportunities

Published:Friday | June 18, 2021 | 1:02 AMDaniel Wheeler/Staff Reporter
Dunbeholden’s Nickoy Christian (left) and Thorn Simpson of UWI FC  battle for possession during a Red Stripe Premier League match at the UWI Bowl on January 12, 2019. The game ended 0-0.
Dunbeholden’s Nickoy Christian (left) and Thorn Simpson of UWI FC battle for possession during a Red Stripe Premier League match at the UWI Bowl on January 12, 2019. The game ended 0-0.
Christie
Christie
Jureidini
Jureidini
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With no opportunities for a transfer period for the upcoming Jamaica Premier League season, some Premier League club officials have pointed to likely squad challenges and believe that extra reliance will have to be placed on their youth system to...

With no opportunities for a transfer period for the upcoming Jamaica Premier League season, some Premier League club officials have pointed to likely squad challenges and believe that extra reliance will have to be placed on their youth system to offset the effects of not being able to bring in external reinforcements.

Jamaica Football Federation General Secretary Dalton Wint confirmed to The Gleaner on Tuesday that there will not be a transfer period ahead of the upcoming season, which starts on June 26.

General Manager at Harbour View, Clyde Jureidini, certainly understands the reason for the decision and explained that while permission was granted last year to extend the window in advance of a failed November return, the delays in the restart have caused complications with the FIFA regulations, which allow only two windows per season.

“All the clubs would have not just two, but two and a half because there was an extension of the first window to facilitate the November restart that was being proposed. We have had two transfer windows now and no football activity,” Jureidini said.

Wint further confirmed that while there are plans for a modified window ahead of the 2021 - 2022 season, which could start in November, a transfer window for this period could not be accommodated.

“We have applied to FIFA for a window for that September to October period for a (potential) November start,” Wint said. “(However) there wasn’t an opportunity for another window (for this season).”

FIFA’s COVID-19 Regulatory Football Issues document, released in April 2020, gave guidance that allowed member associations to “amend season dates and/or registration periods either with the Transfer Matching System (an online platform to record transfers) or by otherwise notifying FIFA.”

PUSHING PAST CHALLENGES

The four-month season is scheduled to conclude on September 26, and according to Dunbeholden FC’s Team Manager Paul Christie, his team is prepared to push through the challenges despite the expected setbacks through injuries and other issues affecting his current squad.

“It is a situation that is not unique to Dunbeholden alone ... . Some players are going into retirement, some players are saying that they are going to change their career paths, and some persons have simply migrated,” Christie lamented.

“All of that would have had affected us. However, we have to trust in the coaching staff and technical team to do the very best that they can do, and we will just have to live with the results,” he added.

Meanwhile, Jureidini noted that the absence of a window ahead of the new season will place greater importance on the youth structure of participating teams.

“It’s going to depend on the football module of each club because each club which has youth teams like we do has to draw on the younger players coming up because they are already in the club,” Jureidini said.

daniel.wheeler@gleanerjm.com