JFF Responds To Leon Bailey Interview

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The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) has responded to recent interview with Reggae Boy Leon Bailey.

Via a media release, the JFF said:

The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) taken note of an interview by one of our national players, Leon Bailey, which has been circulating on social media.

The JFF has tried not to comment on this, as we were hoping that this would be handled internally, but based on the comments received from the public and stakeholders, we have been forced to comment publicly. We want to say that it is quite unfortunate that these comments were made, and in such a public manner, as we had hoped that we have arrived at a place where any disagreements are handled internally.

  

It is also unfortunate that Leon has apparently felt this way about the JFF, especially while playing for the Jamaica National team and not expressing it, and knowing his commitment to the programme and country. He has indicated the that the persons in the JFF, and by implication the JFF, has given him a fight and tried to block him from going to Europe by working through the Embassy. He further stated that the system in Jamaica, implying the JFF, is “too corrupt”. He also states that if players do not play for certain clubs they do not get selected for the national team, which this allegation was already made without any presented.

Leon also implies in one of his answers that the media also is biased.

This is quite unfortunate as the JFF has always seen Leon as an important member of the National team, and what he has said is baseless and is consistent with recent similar comments made, which we have called for evidence to be shared, either privately or publicly, so that we can act on it. To date no such evidence has been shared. It is not credible to make anecdotal accusations without evidence, and by doing so seek to damage the reputation of individuals and the JFF as an organisation. We also find it impractical that a child between 8 and 12 years old would understand what the actions and motives of the JFF, or any organisation would be, with any clear understanding as first-hand information.

In fact, by saying that the JFF has the capability to block an Embassy from issuing a visa, also implies that the Embassy is complicit with the JFF in acting as he implies in a “corrupt” manner. The JFF can assure everyone that we do not have that ability to influence a visa decision with any Embassy, and we would never seek to intervene in such a process.

The JFF can categorically state that none of the accusations made in the interview are factual. However, if there is any evidence at all supporting these allegations, we ask again in this case that this be shared with the JFF so that it can be acted upon as any action as alleged is unacceptable and would be dealt with strongly by the JFF.

In the meantime, we have referred this matter to the Team Manager and Coach for review, as they are the ones who deal with issues relating to the players and the team.

We look forward to receiving the evidence of the unfortunate allegations made.

  

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