07 September 2013

With league implementing foreign-player rule, Nomads future in UFL in limbi

Karl Decena, InterAKTV

Long before football was into the national consciousness of Filipino fans, Nomads FC has been active in the local scene. Boasting of a 99-year tradition, it is one of the oldest clubs that remains in action.
But the club, formed by expatriates living in the Philippines, is wary of its future in the United Football League after the country’s top football competition implemented a rule limiting the number of foreign players per club.
In the new foreign player rule, five imports will be allowed on the pitch for each club during a match. They can be joined by two more foreigners, as long as those have been permanent residents of the Philippines for at least five years.
As a team with only a few Filipinos in the mix, Nomads is expected to struggle.
“It is our intention to drop down to Division Two,” said Jeff Blake, goalkeeper for Nomads FC and a member of the team management. “For us to drop down, it’s much better for us.”
Blake said that the implementation of the new rule caught them off guard.
“I feel that it is being done too soon, three months notice,” said Blake, an American national. “Not a lot of teams are able to do that financially — and we can’t.”
A special exemption from the rule is expected to be given to Nomads given its contributions to the league’s growth. Founded in 1914, the club is also one of the 16 founding members of the UFL.
“This is a club that has been in the UFL from the very start. They have supported UFL through thick and thin and obviously that is something valuable to us,” UFL general manager Cesar de Larrazabal said.
However, de Larrazabal admitted that the UFL also wants to comply with international standards to be competitive against its counterparts abroad, and limiting foreigners is the first step toward that.
“This is something that we’ve discussed a couple of years already. We need to start aligning with AFC (Asian Football Confederation). So we’re talking about capping foreign players and this is the start of it,” he said.
De Larrazabal said that Nomads will be given two years to comply with the foreign player rule — an exemption only given to founding members playing in the second division.
“Recognizing that, we are giving the founding members a two-year allowance to be able to comply with the foreign rules. That can only be given to teams in the second division, founding members (who are) in the second division,” he said.
But for Nomads player Randy Musters, two years are not enough for them to abide with the rule.
“At the moment, we’ll try to be able to have a lot of Filipinos and comply with the rules,” he said. “But to be honest, in the next two years, not a lot of Filipino players will come in. It’s gonna be hard.”
Despite concerns about its UFL future, Nomads vowed that it will still be competitive for the next season. But Musters admitted that their prospects remain bleak.
“Nothing is really clear to be honest,” he said.
De Larrazabal assured that whatever the final decision Nomads and the UFL agree upon, it would be for the benefit of both parties — and football’s development in general.
“What we’re going to come up with will recognize the provenance of Nomads and, at the same time, ensure that our roadmap, our dream of elevating Philippine football in our own little way, is realized,” he said.



  1. Finally some clear statements. It's sad that Nomands has to go to Division 2 but they wouldn't have won that much in Div 1 anyway and were one of the number one candidates for relegation this season next to Army and Socceroo. I'm hopeful that they can make it in two years time and then head back to Div 1 where they belong.

    1. PS: That is if the UFL teams have not gone over to a PFF national league already... but knowing the PFF that will take some time.

    2. I wonder why 2 years isnt long enough for the Nomads? Other teams doesnt have any problems with recruiting, even the 2nd div clubs, why cant they?

      National league wont happen anytime soon. Main problems are logistics. Look at Cebu Queen City and Ceres FC. Queen City dropped about because of the cost, and Ceres doesnt want to join before they are allowed to host games on their hometurf.

      As i see it, a national league will never happen and the country isnt ready for it yet. The league has a very long way to go.

      I wouldnt think so much about the PFF. In this case theyre hardly involved. Im pretty sure theyre having a good feeling because someone has had success with the UFL, and that they, PFF, wont have to work hard to get something done. Everyone is doing their jobs atm.

      I wish that in the future we would see a team from Mindanao in the UFL. Rest of the country is somehow involved already.

    3. "As i see it, a national league will never happen and the country isnt ready for it yet. The league has a very long way to go."

      PFF already announced that a national league will be launched in 3 years! Quite frankly, that can't come soon enough!

      As for the Nomads, this is the BS that you get with the ufl. It clearly shows that the people who are running don't know what the fuck they're doing! They just do things without much thought just to make themselves look good and because something is the trend.

      Something such as a foreign player limit isn't suppose to be implemented months before the season starts! The league needs to give the clubs time such as a season or two to be able to comply. But no, they just randomly implement it because they feel like it and because it's what other countries are doing! Ridiculous!! Again, the national league to be implemented by the PFF can't come soon enough. But I get the feeling that there's gonna be the same type of BS when that comes around!

    4. Sorry to say this, but PFF are way over their heads with the plans of a national league. They have tried so many times in the past, and the leagues just folded within short time. I wouldnt expect too much when it comes to PFF and a national league. We should be thankful that we have the UFL, coz if we didnt, we wouldnt have nothing, and PFF arent able to do what the UFL guys have done.

      3 years isnt that long, but the PFF has buttload of work to do in front of them. It wont be easy. And i wont believe it until i see it. They have to bring in alot of sponsors. Logistics wont be easy depending on how many teams the league would have and so on. Maybe they wanna follow the MLS, divide the league in regions. Who knows, but lets see. But im not getting my hopes up though.

    5. They've tried in the past, but that's just it... THE PAST!! It's different now because football is actually popular now and more mainstream. PFF also should have a bit more money than before. So I'd give them the benefit of the doubt on this one.

    6. And from where exactly would the PFF get that money? All they have is the support of FIFA and the AFC, but they don't have a TV contract such as the UFL has with InterAKTV, which is the most important element in the UFL's success aside from free admissions. The UFL's financial backing is just so much stronger than that of the PFF's and I doubt that the PFF can make it any better.

      I think if, then the UFL will eventually become the new national league one day, when all of the clubs are financially strong enough to travel to Cebu, Taal or Bacolod, etc. They are far from achieving that at the moment though and inviting other clubs outside of the NCR to take part in the Cup is the first step in the right direction for this.

  2. Past na't league d nag patuloy cgro kC wlg sponsor tpos tv rights,sa tingin q pg nag start n ag na't league ngaUn more tv station cgro ag gustong mg bid,kc meron ding mga products sa province ag like ma ad sa tv ung produkto nla,ag metropolitan basketball association noon d nag succed kc my pba,sa opinion q lg at suggestion pg ready n mag start Ung na't league sana Ung ufl mg giveway nlg pra hind M lilito Ung mga sponsors qng saang league,league ba cla mg spend ng money nla,pra wla nang hadlang Ung na't league at mg papatuloy,la nmn kaCng bansa n pinondohan ng fifa n mag karoon ng na't league n hnd nag succed,bstat wag lg nlag e bulsa,ag mga airlines at transpo sa huli my mg sponsor nlg din yan basta my live tv coverage,ok din nmn Ung ufl, pero iba Ung aliw at saya pg pride n ng city o province ag pinag uusapan at chenicheer mo,sana wag lg silang mg papadala sa mga taong gustong siraan o hnd gustong m umpisahan Ung na't league,kC sa tingin q pg n umpisahan lg mg papa tuloy n cgro,at bka sa huli mkarating din ag pilipinas sa word cup,kC ag mga parents at kabataan sa ngayon mas gusto nla Ung basketball kc sinasabi nla n mg basketball k nlg kc pg football wla k nmng popuntahan dahil wla nmn kaCng league n popuntahan maski mgaling ka pang mg football,pro pg my national league n ag parents n mahilig sa sports,at mkta nya nmn n hnd masyadong mataas Ung height ng anak nla, bka cla p ag mg udyok sa mga anak nla n maglaro ng football.