Jamaica squad refuse to train ahead of return Nations League tie against minnows Suriname
Dalton Wint has buckled under the immense pressure and resigned as general secretary of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF). The JFF announced his departure via social media with a Facebook post at 1am (Jamaica time), following their emergency meeting in Kingston.
After a leaked WhatsApp voice message, in which an unnamed player representing Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz asked for Wint to go, the JFF post read: “Statement from the JFF. The general secretary of the Jamaica Football Federation, Mr. Dalton Wint, has given his unequivocal and irreversible commitment to submit his resignation from the post.
“The Board of Directors of the JFF look forward to receiving same soonest. Other relevant information regarding this matter will be shared with the country in the coming days.”
Wint’s tumultuous tenure as JFF general secretary kicked off in 2017. He was blamed for a number of recent problems, which included the debacle of the squad’s travel arrangements following Saturday’s game in Suriname.
The return leg of the CONCACAF Nations League takes place tonight (8pm ko Jamaica time), with interim head coach Paul Hall in charge despite rumours that he had resigned following Saturday’s 1-1 stalemate against the South American minnows.
The National Stadium in Kingston is not expected to be usual cauldron for opponents, and the Boyz refused to undertake yesterday’s training session until Wint was removed from his role.
Hall, appointed in early December following the sacking of then head coach Theodore “Tappa” Whitmore, told journalists during a virtual press conference: “I can’t speak about football matters.
“You don’t get to see behind the scenes and so on, but when they [the players] came back to the changing room before the game we were together. That was a committed group of people, and I want to congratulate [them] because they have shown some serious resilience.
“So the fans don’t need to question my commitment, my country came calling and I’ve always been there. I want the public to show me that they would like me here by showing their support, because it’s really hard to refuse when you know you’ve got people behind you.
“I want the supporters to come out to the game and show us that they’re on our side. Our players will react to their presence and that provides certainty for us.”
Failure to beat FIFA-ranked world no.141 side Suriname, some 77 places behind the Boyz, would bring serious doubts about automatic qualification for next year’s prestigious Gold Cup. Defeat would surely end Hall’s reign, as he has mustered just one win since taking the helm.
Mexico are the heavyweights in the three-team Nations League group, who would be expected to breeze past both Jamaica and Suriname. The Boyz welcome Mexico next week, just three days after Jamaica compete in a hastily-arranged friendly against twice-World Cup winners Uruguay.
These two tough games could see a new coach in charge as Hall has so far failed to deliver the results expected since being appointed.
However, with the JFF lacking the financial clout to bring in a respected head coach, Hall may be given more time to prove his worth and tackle the South American giants of Uruguay and Mexico.
June 7 | Suriname (h)| Nations League
June 11 | Uruguay (a) | friendly
June 14 | Mexico (h) | Nations League
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