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Net loss from recent matches worries JFF

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:32 am    Post subject: Net loss from recent matches worries JFF Reply with quote

BY HOWARD WALKER Observer staff reporter
Monday, July 07, 2008

A loss of over $300,000 incurred in their last three home games will force the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) to take some "harsh decisions" in ensuring the profitability in the exercise of staging home games - friendlies and World Cup qualifiers.

Among the measures put on the table to increase profit-making are the increase in the costs of tickets and a possible reduction in the number of overseas-based players invited to represent the country.

This was announced by the JFF in a press release on Saturday after the preliminary figures for the three international matches staged last month - including two World Cup qualifiers against Bahamas - showed a deficit of $304,864.00.

This prompted an emergency meeting by the JFF on June 25 and the conclusion was that the loss position would force the federation to make "some harsh but necessary decisions" for the upcoming qualifiers.
"Against this background, the board discussed what it saw as inescapable options including amongst others, increasing ticket prices, recommending the reduction of overseas-based professionals in the squad and the need to have capacity attendance at all local games," the release stated.

Leighton McKnight, chairman of the Finance Committee, told the Observer that they are asking for the public support in overcoming these obstacles. "We have to say to the public we need your support and co-operation because they are a lot of factors weighing against us in qualifying this team," he said yesterday.

"We have to pay the players' match fees, but when we look at it we can't really afford it. But they will look at what their counterparts are being paid. They know what Trinidad is paid, they know what Honduras, Costa Rica and so on are paid. They are going to compare because it is an international market," McKnight noted.

According to the JFF, expenses ran as high as $29m for the three games. The main expenditure items that helped to lead to this loss position were identified rental of National Stadium and Trelawny complex ($3,355,750), airfare ($2,735,001), hotel accommodation ($2,500,991), match fees ($14,035,950).

Other operational activities such as security, ticket co-ordination/printing, ushers, public address, match day workers/meals totalled $7,068,268. The JFF was advised by the treasurer, Gary Sinclair, that the figures would have shown a more significant loss if most of the overseas-based players had not travelled on their own ticket for the holidays. Hence, it can be expected that this line item could be tripled for the upcoming matches.

The board was further reminded that for upcoming away qualifiers the federation would be responsible for operational costs of approximately $24 million. The main items estimated as follows per match would be airfares ($10,780,000), hotel accommodation and meals ($4,500,000), match incentives ($9,100,000).

The JFF stressed the need for home-played World Cup qualifiers to be so profitable that they can help cover the costs of the away games. The board examined the figures against the background of five other national teams being in training and soon to enter international competition. These teams are the National Under 15,17 & 20 Men and the National Under 15 &17 Women. The federation will have to fund airfare costs for these teams who have been in training over the past three months.
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