Not so much a general sports blog as an irregularly updated desperate plea for help.
Duane, I don't do this just to be a pain in the butt, but I can't let this pass without comment. Every amateur sport in Canada cries the blues about a lack of financial support. Sometimes it is even justified. Ask yourself this, though -- how much government support do the national sides of our CONCACAF opponents get? You know, the small, dirt poor countries who routinely kick our butts and prevent us from going to the World Cup? "Not much" is the short answer, yet they just go out and play. That's what I want our guys to do, just go out and play. Have some international success, THEN you can come and beak about a lack of support, not before.
Dennis, it's always good to have the sobering ying to the raging yang... I think it's a bit of a false dichotomy. The bar isn't set at a Honduras or a T&T level -- it's set at the standard of what other Canadian athletes get in support and what other athletes within the CSA get. De Rosario and de Guzman were very vocal about saying the CSA supports the women's team since it qualifies for its World Cup (against a much weaker field) but not the men's. For that matter, let's look at what Australia -- another geographically isolated country with a spread-out population -- does for its footballers and Olympic-sport athletes. There's no comparison between it and Canada.The Brazil friendly isn't even being aired live when it's being played on Soccer Day in Canada. Like Ben Knight says in a post up at globesports.com, "I hope every single player – in all national team programs – will follow their lead, and break the silence. "Jim Brennan, captain of Toronto FC, can we please have your comments? Iain Hume, target man of the future, what's it been like coming up through the Canada system as a young player trying to make his mark in English soccer? Paul Stalteri just helped Fulham's brilliant, harrowing, desperately unlikely survival in a fierce relegation war at the bottom of the English Premier League. What did Fulham do right, that Canada is doing wrong?" ... The CSA seems to want to paint itself as an organization that responds to pressure. De Guzman and De Rosario have raised the pressure nicely. But anyone who loves soccer in Canada needs the pressure to increase – constantly – from as many new directions as possible."
I'm not a big "need more money" guy. My issues with the CAA has to do with mismanagement of the money they do have and the choices the CSA has made with the limited funding it gets.
That's a good point of clarification... the CSA has money... the COA has money ... just not enough of it is getting to the athletes and their coaches. This country has been held back way too long by the Dick Pounds of the world, who believe only those whose blue is bluer than an Eastern Townships lake on a sunny autumn day should get the privilege of being Olympians.The CSA made a killing off FIFA U-20. It should help bump us up, the same way Calgary 88 did for our Winter Olympics program.
Only the books showed a loss, which was then bumped up by some FIFA money to put the tournament in a break-even position.Which is another things-that-make-you-go-hmmm thing with the CSA.And, I have some stories about the womens' team funding that would make you scratch your head--like the CSA refusing to allow the team to get its own sponsors, instead forcing to use those negotiated at the NSO level. The net result? The CWNT turned down real dollars so Winners could be its exclusive sponsor. Winners puts exactly $0 into the national team. The money it's spending in the agreement all goes to grassroots girls soccer--essentially, Winners is paying for u-5 strips. The women refused to be at the press conference when the deal was announced, so the CSA waited until they were in China at the World Cup to make the announcement.And, that's the better supported program....
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