Police to be present at football matches, coach suspended

  • Referees return to games
  • Coach suspended
  • New zero-tolerance approach

Police officers will be present at Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) matches as part of increased security measures following the attack on a match official last Saturday. The move comes as CIFA and the Cayman Islands Referee Association (CIRA) hammered out a plan that sees officials returning to the pitch, following a strike brought on by Saturday’s incident.

In a joint statement released Wednesday afternoon (12 April), the two associations reaffirmed their commitment to safety of referees and assistant referees. Additional security officers will also be present at games.

“There will continue to be a zero tolerance for abuse or discrimination from players, coaches, members of clubs or spectators. Violators of this zero tolerance approach will be reported to the CIFA Disciplinary Committee and the Royal Cayman Islands Police and, where considered appropriate, be banned from attending any CIFA matches,” they said in the statement.

As such, Alliance FC head coach, William Medina, has been suspended from all football related activity, pending a hearing by the CIFA Disciplinary Committee. A CIFA official confirmed to CaymanSportsBuzz.com that this meeting is expected to take place over the course of the next week. The Disciplinary Committee’s ruling will then be reviewed by the CIFA Executive Committee.

Alliance FC was trailing 3-0 in their opening round match of the Men’s FA Cup against Future SC when the incident happened that led to Medina allegedly striking assistant referee Marlon Johnson. The match, which was in injury time, was immediately ended and Future picked up the win.

“Clubs who perpetuate or condone coaches and players making threats, or acting violently, towards match officials or other players or coaches on, or outside, the field of play or that violate the CIFA Code of Conduct in any other regards will face sanctions, such as fines, deduction of points or being banned from competitions,” said CIFA President Lee Ramoon.

“The time has come for stricter measures, and together with the CIFA Executive Committee, we are determined to implement stricter security measures and sanctions, in order to ensure the safety and betterment of the game.”

Ramoon said CIFA officials will be meeting with clubs shortly to emphasise the new zero tolerance rule.

“We intend to send a strong message and warning to our football fraternity,” he said. “Clubs need to select coaches that are equipped with the right skill set and abilities, and we will hold clubs responsible for its coaches, management, and players. We do not condone the bad behaviour of coaches and players. It’s simply not acceptable.”

CIFA youth league games scheduled for Wednesday evening were set to go ahead.

CaymanSportsBuzz.com will continue tracking these developments and bring more details as they emerge.

One Comment

  1. Pingback: UPDATE: Talks underway to end referees strike – Cayman Sports Buzz

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