Tim Kee hoping for good new$
Trinidad and Tobago Football Association president Raymond Tim Kee has vowed to keep on pressing for better conditions for national team players and staff members as this country seeks to return to a respectable position within Concacaf leading into the 2018 World Cup qualifying efforts.
Tim Kee traveled to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia last week to witness T&T’s 3-1 victory over the hosts at the 2013 OSN Cup and held meetings with some of the top executive officials of the Saudi Arabian, United Arab Emirates and New Zealand football associations. His interactions allowed him to learn first hand the significant difference in wages afforded to those of the competing countries, particularly the Emirates and Saudi Arabia, as well as the value of the financial support provided to football programmes of those nations.
The TTFA is holding ongoing discussions with potential partners to fund the programmes for the various national teams and expects some good news before year end, according to Tim Kee.
“It is no secret that our athletes and might I add moreso in football, deserve more than what is afforded to them but we shall continue the fight to ensure the right conditions are there for everyone involved,” Tim Kee told TTFA Media. “It cost a lot to fund these teams, particularly the senior team and we are working best with what we can afford at the moment.” The insurance executive, who does not receive a monthly salary for his TTFA post, said he was delighted to have heard via a phone call while in Riyahd that Minister of Finance Larry Howai made mention of the team’s exploits against Saudi Arabia while delivering the Annual Budget report last Monday.
“I was quite pleased as everybody else was, to hear that the team’s performance was mentioned. I jokingly said that the Minister of Finance was looking to start his delivery on a very happy note. I thought that was a good strategy for the national community. I hope that it signals some more assistance not only from the ministry if support, but also the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and Foreign Affairs,” Tim Kee added.
Tim Kee feels that the country at large is slowly beginning to embrace sport, realizing how important it can be to boosting the country’s economy.
“I think the national community is beginning to realise that things have turned around,” Tim Kee said.
“The confidence will soon be coming back and as so long that that is out of the way I expect the corporate world to make their contributions towards out pursuit of excellence in football I would hope that we have turned a page where the corporate citizens will only contribute to sport only when we have emerged winners continuously.
“I hope they understand that to get to that stage, it takes a certain amount of sacrifice and resources and we need help with that in cash or kind. It does not necessarily have to be cash all the time but we need to know the national community is behind us, not only the grassroots but indeed all peoples, our parliamentarians, our business people, this is our country an therefore we should be working together to uplift our standards.”