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Home Sports FFB Top League under way at Isidoro Beaton Stadium

FFB Top League under way at Isidoro Beaton Stadium

13-1 score raises doubts about “Top League” legitimacy

BELIZE CITY, Wed. Oct. 27, 2021 — All six teams in the just launched FFB Top League 2021-2022 tournament saw action over the weekend in Week 1 games at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium where all games of the tournament are being played with no fans allowed. There was one hugely lopsided score (13-1) in the last game of the weekend, but it should hardly matter, from a historical record standpoint, because any comparison of goal scoring feats with previous top level competitions of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) would not be fair. This current “Top League” obviously lacks a measure of parity which was characteristic of previous PLB tournaments.

And the make-up of the “FFB Top League” is obviously the root of the problem, and why some fans were already questioning the legitimacy of the tournament. For starters, five (5) of the established nine (9) PLB clubs are not participating in this Top League tournament. The explanation given by the FFB in its October 18 press release (see page 25 of Amandala for Friday, October 22, 2021) is that “several clubs had applied, but only six clubs were successful in meeting all the requirements established by the FFB.” Curiously, five established PLB clubs “were unsuccessful,” while two non-PLB clubs with no history beyond 1st Division Amateur status, were able to meet “the requirements established by the FFB.”

Those requirements by the FFB are a matter of curiosity, because it is a strange coincidence that the four (4) PLB clubs that are included in the Top League are the same clubs that reportedly voted in support of the incumbent PLB president, Ian Haylock, at its now contested executive elections in 2020; while the five PLB clubs who “were unsuccessful” in meeting “the requirements” of the FFB were those who reportedly voted in favor of the victorious challenging slate for the PLB executive, headed by Toledo’s Clifford King, and which the FFB under president Sergio Chuc has refused to recognize. (See “Belmopan Bandits issues press release” on page 6 of Amandala for Tuesday, October 19.) It raises the automatic question, whether Chuc’s FFB, because it favored the incumbent PLB slate, ensured that the five dissenting clubs that supported the challenger, were “unsuccessful” in meeting “the requirements” of the FFB.

The four PLB clubs in the Top League are Wagiya SC, Altitude FC, San Pedro Pirates FC and Verdes FC. One of the new clubs, Garden City FC is from Belmopan and reportedly includes a number of former Bandits players. The other is Caesar Ridge FC, the second place finisher in the last Belize District 1st Division (CYDP) Amateur tournament of 2019-2020. That tournament’s champion was FC Elite.

Well, Week 1 of the FFB Top League 2021-2022 tournament is now history; and the results spell vindication for the Bandits and other PLB clubs who were excluded from the FFB Top League. In the nightcap game on Sunday afternoon at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium, reigning PLB champion Verdes FC delivered a double digit thrashing to Caesar Ridge FC, 13 goals to 1. Such a score is unheard of in the annals of Belize semipro football since its inception in 1991.

According to the report received from the FFB, on Saturday at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium, Wagiya SC and Altitude FC played to a 1-1 draw (no scoring details). The opener on Sunday afternoon saw San Pedro Pirates FC with the 2-0 win over Garden City FC, San Pedro goals coming from Facundo Garnier (65’) and Gilroy “Bredda” Thurton (90+3’). And in the nightcap, Verdes FC waltzed to a 13-1 cakewalk over Caesar Ridge FC with goals coming from Junior Vargas (3’ & 18’), Darrel Myvett (16’), Krisean Lopez (45’, 59’, 84’ & 90+2’), Trimayne Harris (64’, 72’ PK & 69’), Owen Sosa (66’) and Jordy Polanco (5’ PK & 59’); while the lone goal for Caesar Ridge was from the penalty spot (PK) by Shawn Young (7’ PK) .

Upcoming FFB Top League Week 2 schedule:
Saturday, October 30
4:00 p.m. – Garden City FC vs Caesar Ridge FC
Sunday, October 31
3:30 p.m. – San Pedro Pirates FC vs Wagiya SC
5:30 p.m. – Altitude FC vs Verdes FC

(AMANDALA Sports Ed. Note: Perhaps it would be best for the FFB to scrap this tournament, get the PLB election matter resolved one way or another, and see real “top level” [as in PLB] football back in action to produce a legitimate national champion for Concacaf participation.)

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