Veteran resigns following controversial claims made to the JFF by majority of squad
Vin Blaine, who came under fire from a plethora of Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz, jumped before he was pushed by resigning from his role as interim head coach. The veteran Harbour View coach, who had guided the Girlz for over a decade prior to a stint in Grenada, was only appointed last December.
Yet 20 players called for Blaine to be axed and put their names on a two-page letter to Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) president Michael Ricketts urging him to take action. Their complaints included accusations that Blaine had trouble with coaching, communication and organisation skills. However, he had guided the Girlz to four victories in the CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers where they bagged 24 goals with aplomb.
The controversial letter claimed that Blaine and his staff lack the competence to successfully guide the Girlz through the CONCACAF Women’s Championship, and into next year’s FIFA World Cup Finals. Further concerns were highlighted about Blaine’s leadership style, the technical staff’s tactical preparation, an apparent lack of professionalism as well as the absence of daily schedules.
Blaine hit back by denying these claims, stating that “external forces were at play” in these allegations. The JFF Board carried out investigations, which failed to show sufficient evidence to give Blaine the boot. The Board accepted the recommendation by the Technical & Development Committee to retain Blaine as interim coach.
However, the Girlz collectively made it clear that they would not be able to commit their future unless substantive action was taken.
Girlz power won in the end as Blaine tendered his resignation, having waited for the compensation packages for himself and his technical staff to be addressed by the JFF.
The JFF issued a statement that read: “The Jamaica Football Federation would like to express sincere thanks and appreciation for the work that coach Vin Blaine has done with the women’s national team.
“Unfortunately, he has decided against taking the team to the next level. We hoped that the relationship shared with the federation would not end this abruptly, but we appreciate his take on the situation at hand. The JFF wishes him all the very best for the future.”
The final round of the World Cup qualifiers, set to take place in Mexico from 4-18 July, pitches Jamaica in a tricky group that comprises defending champions USA, hosts Mexico and Caribbean heavyweights Haiti. The top two teams advance to next year’s World Cup Finals in Australia & New Zealand.
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