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
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?
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