Among the wider-ranging topics addressed by top class panelists, CONCACAF’s Sports Summit 2013 discussed the fascinating potential for a professional league for the Caribbean.
CONCACAF President Jeffrey Webb raised the issue when he told guests that in order to improve the competitiveness of national teams from the region, a professional competition was needed.
“The Caribbean faces particular challenges when it comes to developing the game at a professional level. One of the main goals for the Caribbean has to be to develop a sustainable football league. It is time we make this happen,” he told the summit.
Kieran Foley Digicel Group Marketing Operations Director, whose company sponsor 17 national federations and national teams in CONCACAF, said the moment was ripe for such a venture.
“We have invested around 180 million in past six to seven years in sport in the Caribbean,” said Foley.
“Sponsors and partners are looking for vehicles to talk to people. If you can do that, work with brands from the off-set, then you are not that far away from it. You have all government ministers here, leaders of state, football associations – now is the time.
“Every country is at different stages – we are in a fantastic opportunity, understand it and take advantage of it,” added Foley.
Former Manchester United and Trinidad and Tobago striker Dwight Yorke said having a league in the Caribbean would “enhance” professionalism in the game.