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Reid embarrassed by stadium rejection

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Reid embarrassed by stadium rejection on Fri Feb 11, 2011 1:11 am



JFF general secretary Horace Reid - file

Western Bureau:

Jamaica Football Federation's (JFF) general secretary Horace Reid has branded the rejection of the Trelawny Multi-purpose Stadium as disgraceful and an embarrassment to the federation.

The search is now on in earnest for a new venue after CONCACAF yesterday rejected the venue, declaring the US30-million facility as below the requirement to host games in the 12-team CONCACAF Under-17 Championship, which is slated to start in four days.

"We have serious concerns about this venue - there is no grass and this is not what we expected," said Tim Howard, the general secretary of CONCACAF, following a tour of the facility with an inspection team. "As we speak, the only way we would reconsider is if we can't find a suitable alternative venue."

As a consequence of the rejection of the Trelawny facility, the search is now on to find another venue, with Jarrett Park, which was initially rejected during CONCACAF's first inspection of venues back in September, now high on the list.

"We will be going to Jarrett Park later this afternoon to see what is there," said Howard.

"There is no way we are going to have grass growing at the Trelawny Stadium in four days, so we are basically ruling out that venue."

Reid blamed the management of the stadium for the fiasco, arguing that they had repeatedly promised that the venue would be ready.

"Even after the trampling it took on the final night of the recent Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival, I was promised that it would be ready," said Reid.

"This is embarrassing, disgraceful and unacceptable; this is not what we were promised."

replacement venue

Reid believes the rejection of the Trelawny facility and the last-minute attempt to find a replacement venue is bound to have a negative impact on Jamaica's reputation in CONCACAF.

"This is going to harm our reputation in the CONCACAF and might hurt our chances to stage future tournaments," said Reid.

"I believe there is going to be serious repercussions."

Prior to the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival, the Trelawny facility was lush green and, according to Howard, it was the local venue they had the least concern about in their inspection prior to the music festival.

"Initially, we were very pleased about this stadium. In fact, it was the one we had the least concerns about," said Howard.

"To come here and see it in this state today is just so disappointing."

The inspection team was slated to visit the Catherine Hall venue, the other main stadium for the tournament last night. Based on previous inspections, it was widely believed the venue will be accepted, making it available for Jamaica's opening game against Trinidad and Tobago on Tuesday.

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