By Jerome Galunan Jr.
With the 2013 Smart-PFF Club Championships Group E set to kick off Wednesday, the Leyte Football Association was stripped out of the competition after organizers found violation on the team.
In a communication from PFF, Dick Empirado, chairman of the PFF Competitions Committee and a member of the PFF Board of Governors, wrote that upon the deadline of submission of all club entries participating in this tournament, Leyte FA submitted as its club participant-members and officials from the Global Football Club (Global FC).
On inquiry of the PFF Competitions Department in its official capacity as administrator of the PFF-Smart National Club Championships 2013, the department reported to the PFF Competitions Committee that the Global Football Club (Global FC) is officially registered as a regular member of the National Capital Region Football Association (NCRFA) and not with Leyte FA.
Thus, upon proper inquiry and deliberation of the PFF Competitions Committee, they have concluded that two (2) violations have been clearly committed by Leyte FA. First, by submitting the players and officials and/or the Global FC as its official club entry who is a regular member of the NCRFA and second, no provincial elimination report was submitted that would justify its official representative to the competition.
On the other hand, Batangas FA was also found with the same violations after submitted its club participant from the Philippine Air Force Football Club (PAFFC) and non-submission of provincial elimination report.
On the part of the defending champion Ceres-La Salle FC, representing the Negros Occidental FA, the team has been in tough and rigid preparation in the past several months to ensure a strong team will be fielded to defend their title.
Ceres-La Salle FC is in Group F, with its qualifying round set to kick off on October 4 at the Panaad Park and Stadium.