Press Release: St. Kitts-Nevis Football Association
In February 2015, CONCACAF launched its Club Licensing System for the region.
By the start of the next football season in St. Kitts and Nevis, the St. Kitts-Nevis Football Association (SKNFA) must implement the CONCACAF Club Licensing System, where every club, in order to play football in St. Kitts and Nevis, would need to obtain a club license.”
Some of the Criteria for Club License include:
• Team must have qualified coach
• The team must have a youth program, a youth team
• The team must have a female program
• The team must carry insurance
• Plus several other elements
In order to qualify to play in the SKNFA League, teams must meet these criteria that are mandated by FIFA. SKNFA would be working along with football clubs to ensure that clubs are 100 percent compliant by August or September of this year.
Matter of insurance
According to SKNFA Secretary-General Stanley Jacobs, it is the responsibility of each player to pay for his insurance. “That is how it is done in every country of the world that plays amateur football, that plays amateur sport,” said Stanley.
The good news is that the SKNFA has negotiated attractive rates for the clubs.
“We have negotiated with National Caribbean Insurance reduced rates to make it economically feasible for the players to pay for their insurance,” Jacobs confirmed.
Jacobs believes that it is the player who would benefit tremendously from the purchase of insurance, as it would greatly help in times of injury while playing the sport.
“In the past, we have seen players get injured and having no money to pay for their medical bills They would have to go around and seek sponsorship and ask persons to help them. We believe the time has come for that to end, and for us to move toward a more professional approach, where players pay, upfront, to cover themselves,” Jacobs opined.
“It is for the benefit of the players. You are playing a sport, and you are paying to ensure that if something happens to you on the field of play, you can be covered medically.
“We have to begin changing the mind-set of our players that this is a responsibility that is in their best interest, to ensure they have that insurance. It is a sport injury insurance coverage, so it is only an injury related to playing the sport on the field, whether on the training field or during matches,” the SKNFA secretary-general explained.
He indicated that the Club Licensing System would benefit St. Kitts and Nevis, as it is a development program designed to provide the necessary structures for clubs to develop.
“Clubs are the heartbeat of football. All the great players throughout the world come from clubs.
“It takes the clubs to develop football, but the clubs must be properly developed. This is essentially what FIFA is doing, ensuring that clubs have the structures in place that would help them develop their sport.
“That is why FIFA is asking for a qualified coach, that their financial statements are prepared, so that the clubs have regular annual general meetings and are reporting to members.
“When you look at the criteria, the criteria are designed to lift the standard of development within the clubs, and the way FIFA functions is that FIFA mandates that you do it,” said Jacobs.