Martinez expressed yesterday his outrage over his critics’ claims that he has done nothing to support the national team. In fact, he warned national team manager Dan Palami of repercussions on failing to live up to obligations to former coach Desmond Bulpin. Martinez also said he’s prepared to revamp the entire national team if necessary after the Suzuki Cup.
“I understand that Bulpin was not paid four months of his salary and that’s about $16,000,” said Martinez. “Bulpin has threatened to sue the PFF and FIFA knows about it. If this isn’t settled, FIFA might just suspend the PFF. When FIFA asked me about it, I didn’t know a thing because Palami is supposed to take care of the salary. Bulpin was hospitalized for a heart problem and it was the PFF, not Palami, that paid for his bills of about P200,000.”
Martinez said he had no hand in choosing Englishman Simon McEnemy to coach the national team.
“That guy applied to Palami and he was taken in without consulting me,” said Martinez. “He came in to take over a team that Bulpin formed. I’m now negotiating to recruit a Brazilian coach Rick Figuerido who has about 12 years of World Cup experience with Brazil, Mexico and Jamaica. I can form another national team that’s better than what we’ve got now with guys they dropped. Chad Gould and Roxy Dorlas will be on that team. But I’d rather not elaborate on all of that. Right now, I’d prefer the national team to just focus on the Suzuki Cup and let’s see how far they go.”
Martinez said it’s unfair that he was accused by the national team of not providing support.
“We have not received one centavo of support from the PFF,” said the national team in a position paper released to the media the other day. “Not to mention a call or a text during the final rounds of the Suzuki Cup in Hanoi. This year, we’ve never had any decent training grounds for us to practice on until recently when we trained at the Alabang Country Club and the International School of Manila. Now, there is the matter of the former PFF president telling AFF officials that we, the national team, cannot have our own home game, that we fought so hard for, to be played in front of our countrymen.”
McEnemy, by the way, applied to coach the national team after he learned of the vacancy from Fil-British player Chris Greatwich. He was signed to a two-month probationary contract five weeks from applying. McEnemy, 33, has since been inked to a one-year extension. He is widely known as the youngest football coach with a national team today.