With the exception of the four Executive Committee members from Ilhas zone who have been elected unopposed, the 159 clubs affiliated to Goa Football Association (GFA) seem set to give a chance to new faces to take the game back to its days of glory in Goa.
The surge ahead is led by industrialist and FC Tuem president Caitano Fernandes and police inspector from South Goa Filomeno Costa. Caitano and Filomeno are both poised to capture the posts of president and vice president of South Goa respectively. And, both are contesting for the first time, though their involvement with sports is well known.
Caitano is facing old war horse Welvyn Menezes, who has served as secretary or executive committee member of GFA, and Savio Alemao, son of former president Churchill Alemao who owns Churchill Brothers FC.
Filomeno Costa is also having an easy electoral ride with old face Anthony Pango not being able to conjure any support for himself after being at the helm of GFA for the last many terms. “We asked Filomeno not to canvass for himself because we want change,” stated, Paulo Veiga Coutinho, President of Maina Sports Club.
“GFA needs an individual who can bring financial stability to the association. If clubs are really interested in witnessing the growth of football, then they should elect the person who is ready to spend and not depend on the government and sponsors. Government and sponsors can come in handy later but what we need now is a man who can step in with his own finances,” stated former international and Goa’s most successful football coach Derrick Pereira.
New faces are not only expected to occupy the top slots of the Executive Committee but also down the lower rung with the exception being Sanjiv Nagvekar, Mauricio Almeida, Agee Almeida and Anthony Vaz from Ilhas Zone who are unopposed.
Fourteen members have filed their nominations from Salcette for occupying seven berths in the Executive Committee and newcomers are most likely to disturb the applecart of old war horses like Avertano Furtado, John Silva, Anthony Leo Fernandes and Jaju Fernandes.
“Expect a lot of new faces after these elections because people who love football are disgusted with the manner GFA has been administered in the last eight years. We actually had no goal to achieve. Clubs have been left disgusted in the manner the lower leagues have been run and the manner in which inter-village tournaments have been neglected,” stated Pravin Dabholkar, president of Chapora Yuvak Sangh Sports Club who is also marking his debut in the electoral fray.
Pravin is one of the nine candidates contesting from Bardez for five posts of Executive Committee members where first-timers are set to make their presence felt.
The tie for the post of vice president north is being fought by Domnic Pereira, Victor Fernandes and Jonathan De Souza. Domnic was chairman of the competition committee during the last term. Victor Fernandes was CEO of Sporting Clube de Goa.
Three members have filed their nominations for two posts from Mormugao. Adlear D’Cruz was former general secretary of GFA under Srinivas Dempo and has since joined Salgaocar FC as secretary. He will be hoping to retain his Mormugao seat and Francisco Nunes and Andrew Ferrao are the other two candidates.