Sunvoice

Christophe Gamel, Our Football Needs Fixing; 2 Draws, 3 Red Cards Is A Poor Record

While Solomon Islands and Vanuatu are stepping up their preparations for the Pacific Games by playing worthy opponents in Europe and Asia, Gamel announced on arrival at the Nadi International Airport on Wednesday that his team’s next international will be against Tonga.
17 Jun 2019 12:44
Christophe  Gamel, Our Football Needs Fixing; 2 Draws, 3 Red Cards Is A Poor Record
Vodafone Fijian football head coach Christophe Gamel

Editorial:

Christophe Gamel needs to get his act together first.

The Vodafone Fiji national football coach continues to make the headlines for the very wrong reasons. He needs to abide by the rules of the game and act responsibly.

He can’t be telling the players one thing and doing exactly the opposite on the sidelines.

Not often you see coaches being sent off the field by match officials.

But this happened in the Tri-Nations International Friendly series at Port Vila, Vanuatu, last week.

He argued with the referee, vented his anger at match officials and was sent off at Korman Stadium in the 1-1 tie against Tahiti.

In the end, he missed the final game against Vanuatu, which ended in a scoreless draw.

But two of his players, Samuela Drudru and Kishan Sami, were also red carded.

This is a poor record by any standards and it’s time the Fiji Football Association takes Gamel to task because it seems he is taking football in the wrong direction.

Instead of accepting his errors on the red card, Gamel chose to speak about former Fijian coaches, the late Billy Singh and Yogendra Dutt.

As head coach of the Fijian national team, he should be taking responsibility for his actions and not using former coaches to justify his actions.

The international friendly was meant to provide game time for our players building up to the Pacific Games in Apia, Samoa, next month.

But in the end it seems like a wasteful exercise.

While Solomon Islands and Vanuatu are stepping up their preparations for the Pacific Games by playing worthy opponents in Europe and Asia, Gamel announced on arrival at the Nadi International Airport on Wednesday that his team’s next international will be against Tonga. The men from the Friendly Islands are ranked 202nd out of the 212 football nations affiliated to FIFA. They are the lowest ranked team in Oceania – 37 places below Fiji.

If we are going to talk about progress and winning medals, this is definitely not the way forward.

Gamel’s Bula Boys, currently ranked 165th in the latest ranking by FIFA, will be up against Solomon Islands (139), Tahiti (158), New Caledonia (155), American Samoa and Tuvalu at the Pacific Games.

The Fiji FA should give the ultimatum to Gamel to prove his worth at the Pacific Games because he is struggling to beat teams in the region.

Fiji last won gold at the 2003 Pacific Games in Suva and it’s time Gamel and his Bula Boys start afresh and fly the Fijian flag with pride.

But first the players needs to be disciplined if they are to progress and produce desired results.

And so does Gamel.

He needs to lead by example rather than denting the image of Fiji Football and the sport.

He needs to know that referees are the sole arbiter of fact and no one is bigger than the game.

Feedbackoseab@fijisun.com.fj

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