San Juan Jabloteh’s financial struggle has forced the club to make a desperation decision this week awarding 26 year old wingback Noel Williams a free transfer to Police FC before Friday’s transfer window deadline.
“It means that the club has a salary less to pay and it means that Williams will be somewhere where his salary is certain.”
The past weeks have been disappointing for the three-time TT Pro League Champions failing to make the Group stage of the 2010-2011 CONCACAF Champions’ League after suffering a 6:0 aggregate loss to Mexican side Club Santos Laguna. The club followed with further disappointment on Friday 13 August suffering a 1-0 defeat against DIRECTV North East Stars in the Final of the Lucozade Sport Goal Shield at the Marvin Lee Stadium.
Fenwick explained that he has been making every effort with the players but admits—it’s no secret that the players are not in the frame of mind with the current financial struggles faced by the club.
“It’s been very difficult,” he said. “Sometimes salaries are not coming on time and this will in no doubt affect the players mentally. It’s their livelihood and not being certain of a salary on time will negatively affect them.”
Following Jabloteh’s Goal Shield defeat, Fenwick allowed the players a two-week break and are expected to return to the training pitch on Monday 30 August.
Meantime www.ttproleague.com understands that the club is expected hold a critical meeting on Friday with potential sponsors in hopes of curbing the current financial crisis.
Jabloteh’s problems began in early 2009 with the demise of main sponsor CLICO, whose financial collapse saw the Trinidad and Tobago Government take control of the insurance company.
Since then Jabloteh failed to maintain contracts with a number of players. In 2009 Lester Peltier, Elton John, Devon Jamerson were among the names that departed the club.
Fenwick believes that the club should return to its youth policy in which the club’s professional team has benefitted from in previous years.
“When we look at the other teams in the League with the exception of W Connection, our youth systems have been brilliant,” said Fenwick. “When we played Ma Pau they had around seven players that have been with us. Even Joe Public is equipped with produce from our youth ranks.”
“Those players were developed through Jabloteh ranks and we have to do it again.”
Fenwick concluded by adding, “(Special Reserve Police Officer) Noel Williams joining Police FC means that the opportunity is now open for a young player.”