Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Another Singaporean Farce?
It doesn’t matter how honourable intentions may be at the Football Association of Singapore they always seem to put their foot in their mouth big time. The latest faux pas comes with the news that their newly appointed SLeague deputy CEO, and former Etoile chairman, is a declared bankrupt back in his home country of France and banned from running a business there for five years.
So what does he do? Up sticks to Singapore, sets up a football team, gives them big plans then jumps ship half way through their second season in the SLeague with allegations of unpaid salaries and large debts being left behind.
His appointment was controversial in the first place and has led to Etoile pulling out of the competition; another poorly handled move from both sides.
Let’s look at perception. Businessman racks up debts he can’t pay off at home and does one to the tropics. He sets up a football club, promises all sorts of things that aren’t delivered, then quits. Next, he pops up at the SLeague tasked with turning a moribund game around.
With his track record that was always going to be a tough sell; perhaps one reason why people kept so quiet ahead of the appointment. Now financial impropriety is thrown into the mix.
I live in Indonesia where no most private companies refuse to get involved in the local game because they are unsure where their money will go. Actually, they know full well where the money will go, hence their reluctance to part with it.
With the SLeague due to begin in a couple of weeks time this is another headline the game could well do without.