PANJIM: Nearly 6,000 fans turned out for the Churchill Bros
– East Bengal I-League match which Churchill Bros lost 0-3 at Nehru Stadium, Fatorda, Saturday, but only 773 tickets were sold with the GFA collecting just Rs 23,190 with Rs 30 being the price of each ticket.
Several fans remarked that either too many complimentary passes had been released deliberately or that the security at the gates was too lax and may be even compromised. Obviously, it is the home club, the SAG and the GFA who stand to lose. Some pointed out that on the particular day when there were the finals of Honeybee Friendship inter-village football tournament which was attended by the bigwigs and members of GFA since Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar was the chief guest, the security at Nehru Stadium was virtually non-existent, thus giving an impression that the GFA was paying scant attention to earn revenue.
Meanwhile, Churchill Bros were exasperated at the treatment being meted out to them at the prize award ceremony. Today, it was Fatima Alemao being escorted by CEO Macario Rodrigues, who was scheduled to present the awards to man-of-the match (Rs 5,000) and winning team (Rs 35,000). Fatima could only shake hands with the awardees as there were no envelopes with the cheques to be handed over.
Macario stated that GFA’s organizing secretary Schubert Furtado had failed to send the envelopes to him whereas Schubert maintained it was their media officer Watson Fernandes who was asked to collect them and hand them over to Fatima. However, Watson categorically denied that Schubert had asked him to carry the envelopes. Macario, on the other hand, felt that Schubert did not even show least courtesy and much less sportsmanship as he could have even informed him to take the envelopes. It looks like another extension of politics into sports or is it political football?