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Belize City football blues

BELIZE CITY, Mon. Oct. 28, 2019– With BDF FC suffering back to back losses, while their head coach, Jerome Serano was away with the Belize National U-18, along with BDF striker Jesse August and goalkeeper Charles Tillett, Belize City football fans are suddenly worried that they might miss the playoff action this season, unless BDF FC can stop the surging defending champions, San Pedro Pirates FC this Sunday at the MCC. Below we take the opportunity to print a relevant Krem Radio editorial.

KREMEditorial – Mon. Oct. 28

It is several years now that Belize City does not have a franchise in the national semi-pro football league. The weirdness of this situation derives from the fact that Belize City is the population center of the nation, and, therefore, presumably the largest fan base and market in the nation for the world’s most popular sport.

At the same time, one should mention that Orange Walk, Belize’s wealthiest district, does not have a semi-pro football franchise.

In the case of Belize City, it may be that the issue has mostly to do with the real estate of the MCC Grounds, the home of football in the old capital since 1960. It became pretty clear decades ago that the gambling casino across the street from the MCC desired that real estate for parking and expansion.

But which is more important in a positive way for Belizean youth – the gambling casino or the MCC Garden?

There are multimillionaire Cabinet Ministers in Belize City who were considered supporters of sports before they became wealthy and powerful. When sports were big here in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, we didn’t have the raging crime problem with our youth which we are presently experiencing.

A lot of important people don’t seem to care about the youth. The decisions in Cabinet favor corporate interests instead of our young people. Another such decision was Harvest Caye. We lost jobs and income in the population center. Under the circumstances, it is logical that crime would surge.

(Amandala Sports Ed. Note: As some further background to the above, FC Belize last represented Belize City in the PLB 2014-2015 Closing Season, where they defaulted the last 2 regular season games, and finished 8th out of 9 teams. In the previous Opening Season they had finished last, also defaulting in the last 2 games. After that, Belize City fans have had to ride with BDF FC, as their only hope of seeing PLB football at the MCC; but BDF is not a Belize City based team, although they play out of the MCC Grounds. Two signature events marked the downfall of FC Belize – (1) The death of owner Lionel Welch in February of 2014 during the 2013-2014 Closing Season, plunged the club ownership into controversy. At the time, FC Belize were sub-champions of the 2013-2014 Opening Season; but then failed to make the subsequent playoffs, struggling to a 6th place finish from 7 teams in the 2013-2014 Closing Season that ended in May, 2014. (2) Then in June, 2014, just before the start of the new 2014-2015 Opening Season, the National Sports Council closed the MCC Grounds, forcing FC Belize to take their “home” games to the Louisiana Field in Orange Walk. Already stressed with ownership/sponsorship problems, the logistics difficulties caused by the closure of the MCC in 2014 – although it was re-opened in early 2015 – spelt a downward spiral for FC Belize in their disappointing 2014-2015 Opening and Closing Seasons, their last in the PLB.)

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