Why Goa ministers should go to FIFA 2014

Manohar Parrikar
Panaji, June 14: The Goa MLAs and ministers should have been clearer in explaining their stance as to why they should be going on this 'junket', afterall, it cannot be absolutely ruled out as unnecessary.

Looking back in time

Turning the pages of the history of sports, especially football, one will notice very easily that most of the nation's ace footballers who have represented India in international sports were Goan.

Forgetting Menino Figuereido would be difficult for football lovers. He was the first Goan to have represented India on a goodwill tour to Russia in 1963. Some of the other top footballers also include Lawrence Gomes, who was the u-19 Asian Youth Championships Captain, Neville Stephen D'Souza, Ramesh Redkar, Bernard Pereira, Jose D'Souza, Johnny Araujo, Roberto Fernandes.

Some of the best Indian captains for the Indian senior national teams in the sport were Brahmanand Shankhwalkar, Bruno Coutinho, Mauricio Afonso, and Roberto Fernandes.

The mistake

The Goa government may have its own idea behind arranging the trip to the FIFA world cup, but they seemingly failed in implementing it. It is said that Brahmanand Shankhwalkar, Bruno Coutinho had shown interest in joining the team to Brazil, but none of them were included.

Former Indian skipper and Sports Authority of Goa's Joint Director (training) Bruno Coutinho said he was shocked and hurt because his name was dropped at the last moment.

He said,"my name was there, but when the sports minister cleared the file, he did not put my name. I am hurt a bit. I am a football player. I was an India captain."

Minister who could have been scrapped

What did not make sense to many was why the government was hosting ministers who were remotely related to sports. Among the list were fisheries minister Avertano Furtado, power minister Milind Naik and MLAs Carlos Almeida, Glen Ticlo (both from BJP) and Benjamin Silva (Independent MLA). Sports minister Ramesh Tawadkar, however, was a good choice.

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