12 December 2010

Limpag: Remove the disease in Philippine football

By Mike T. Limpag

FOR THOSE who were surprised why Mari Martinez’s name was never mentioned in my first column after the Azkals made the AFF Suzuki Cup semis, wonder not.

No, I have not forgotten the guy. Besides he’s irrelevant when it comes to the senior team and I thought it was blasphemous to put his name next to those of the RP team manager, coach and players.

Those players worked their butt off to get where they are. Martinez lied his way into his spot. Haven’t you forgotten? This is the same guy who promised to resign in six months if he couldn’t make football the no. 2 most popular sport in the country?
He didn’t of course. That’s why he’s still there. Clinging desperately.

And in Philippine football’s biggest hour he played the Grinch.

He stole our Christmas.

Don’t, for a moment, believe that crap that no Philippine stadium passed the AFF standards for hosting a match. Don’t for a minute believe that the lights in the Panaad aren’t broadcast-tv friendly.

In 2005, we hosted the Southeast Asian Games, an AFF-managed affair, in Panaad. The games were aired live.

Ditto with the 2006 AFF Championships qualifiers. An AFF-managed affair that was also
aired live.

The reason is money and the PFF doesn’t have any left, that’s why 26 of the 33 FAs (Dan Palami’s Leyte Football Association included) voted to have Martinez removed from office.

Martinez said it would have cost $100,000 to host the semifinal game, money that is impossible to raise.

Well he didn’t have to raise it if the PFF has money.

He didn’t have to raise it if the Fifa largesse given during the World Cup--
$200,000—was still available.

He didn’t have to raise it if the annual Fifa aid—$250,000—is in the PFF coffers.

He didn’t have to raise it if he’d graciously left the office when an overwhelming majority said they didn’t want him, anymore.

As to the fairy tale he concocted that he gave up our hosting rights for our players? So they could get 50 percent of the gate receipts in Indonesia’s games? And that he could do that by playing hard-to-get?

Who is he fooling?

How could he play hard to get if he gave Indonesia our home game? Will he threaten, “OK, we’ll just play our game in our home soil.”

That won’t fly. He already gave up his trump card.

By the way, the Jakarta Globe already reported the Indonesia Football Federation will
keep all gate earnings thank-you-very-much. But I’d love to know though, who gets a cut of the advertising and broadcast rights?

Martinez should stop legitimizing his stay in office by bragging that he’s the one recognized by Fifa, something Ronnie Nathanielsz pointed out.

Oh Ronnie, who gets recognized by the international body is rarely a factor, isn’t it?
Remember BAP and PB? It’s about right and wrong and Mari is wrong!

What Mari keeps forgetting to mention is that while his ouster wasn’t recognized by Fifa, the international body, in turn, ordered him to form a new Congress in 90 days and ask the members whether they’d want to kick him again or not.

When I heard that news last Dec. 3, I thought, heck, Mari could do no worse in 90 days, right?

Then along comes this away-and-away semifinals.

Graeme Mackinnon, who was about to pay for his airfare to Bacolod before Mari did a Mari, said it best: Dan Palami (Sorry for mentioning your name with Martinez) is so successful with the national team because he isolated the team from Martinez. Perhaps it’s time to adopt the formula for all? Isolate Philippine football from Martinez.

Let’s get rid of this man once and for all.

But this time, let’s wait for the right time. In 80 days and counting.

I wonder what kind of brilliant plans the future ex-president will cook.

P.S. The answer came too soon a day after I wrote this. Martinez is threatening to fire Palami, coach Simon McMenemey and the whole team. Don’t you just love a desperate man doing desperate things?


Sun Star Cebu


  1. What a well-written article.

    "Don’t for a minute believe that the lights in the Panaad aren’t broadcast-tv friendly."
    I compared Youtube videos from the 23rd SEA games and this year's Suzuki Cup. What do you know! Lighting conditions in Panaad are comparable to those in Indonesian stadia.

  2. Sad that drama always finds a way to our sports (and just about anything in our country). It really put a damper on our spirits and shifted our focus from the success of the boys.
    I really can't stand how he says that "he can form a "better" NT" and in the same breath say that he wants the boys to focus on the up-coming semis and "see how far they go".

    And yes, as for now, let's just focus on the game. Kicking him out when the next congress is up is a foregone conclusion.

    Let's go PHL team!


    GO AWAY martinez!

  4. It is ironic that the worst possible person who could take charge of the PFF is ts President. I think its high time the federation changes its charter so in these kind of situations it is easier to remove a non performing and corrupt leader. Napaka kapal ng mukha. Tao ba yan?? We have to wait another 90 days but so far he is doing his best (which we have never seen in the previous years he has been in charge) to destroy whatever progress the Azkals have achieved. Without any consultation he gave away our right to a neutral venue, now he claims to be making efforts to have the game played elsewhere when he set everything in stone. Who the hell does he think he is fooling? Well, when you think about it, who can he consult but the paid hacks he has who make these annoying entries in these discussions and dont even want to sign their real names. Please get him out..get him out now.

  5. As I said he is ca classic example of a corrupt person, I judge him not just as a PFF president but as a human being. He is bad to the bones.

  6. Pinoy AZKAL in Jakarta13 December 2010 at 02:31

    My Indonesian friends here in Jakarta can't believe that we will not host our own home game its a missed chance to root for your own team, they also pointed out to me the most recent SEA games held in PH. They can't believe that we don't have at stadium that conforms to int'l standards for hosting. Just for info the Indonesians are facing the same problems with their federation ... guess what? ... CORRUPTION the Federation president is on trial for this. Their TIMNAS (national team) is just at the same boat as our AZKALS in terms of organization, funding and etc..

    As far as the games here the pressure is on the Indonesians, our AZKALS proved against Vietnam that there is no home field advantage and this is our trump card and they are wary of this.

    GO AZKALZ!!!

  7. I read he declared he can easily form a team better than the current one. What a guy.

  8. Fuck up and suck it up Martinez. Guys, its already paid under the table and martinez wins it all. Fucking Indonesians talking about thrashing the Pinoy team. what a shame they just say yes with the home games advantage. Dont ever talk about nonsense or corruption. Think again. We have the picth but we dont have the enough numbers of supporters. They were just crazy about 80,000 indonesian fans and the money they could get. I will let myself be hunged upside down if we didnt have the on standard pitch. We shouldnt let this be forgotten. a home game is money and a win advantage assurance. We simply lost it all. This should be our time but we didnt find a way. Shame on our leaders.

  9. Shame on martinez. Though I like Mcemeny but I should say we werent playing football the way it should be played. This is not football and I just wished the goat mided martinez should hide in the bushes and let Mcemeny play his game.