LAST Jun 20, 2016 history was made in the world of football.
I have been involved with the beautiful game for as long as I can remember but I have never encountered, heard or read of any tournament that a team has been given a plus one goal before a championship game.
It was given to the team who won the day-long argument off the football pitch.
It is just plain stupid. And that is a world record. We should call Guinness Book of World records or Ripley’s Believe it or not.
Let’s give the award to the organizers of the Malaybalay Invitational Football Cup held just in front of the well groomed gardens of the Bukidnon Provincial Capitol.
I may be accused of being biased because my son plays for Rosevale School, the school which unfortunately got the unfair treatment from the hands of the organizers.
But as a sports columnist and a long time media man I just could not let this pass and pretend that this never happened.
Rosevale was entered in the 10 Under Category with year 2005 as cutoff date. Five teams joined the competition in their age group, Davao City Football Club, Celestial FC, M-Kids, and Malaybalay FC and Rosevale School of Cagayan de Oro.
Rosevale breezed past Malaybalay United 6-0, M-Kids, 3-0, in the morning elimination tournament.
After the lunch break Rosevale was informed that all their matches were considered forfeited because it used overaged players.
The coaches argued and showed them the invitations that the cutoff date was 2005. The organizers during the lunch break, we learned received a complaint from Davao City FC that Rosevale used overaged players.
Rosevale coaches cried foul. It never used any overage players and in fact they showed all the credentials of the players and all the players were born 2005 and some of them were even born 2006 and 2007.
So, the Rosevale kids were allowed to continue playing. They beat Celestial,4-0, but lost to DCFC 1-0.
The semis was delayed again as DCFC continued protesting, saying that Rosevale kids were too tall and were bigger. A complaint that should have been brushed off.
I know all the Rosevale kids, some of them are big. My son Ethan is even massive, but they are all young and meet the age limit. Davao City FC’s particularly targeted tall defender John Quinito.
Yes, John is very tall for his age. But he was born in 2005. He is a classmate of my son. He is also a bright kid, the brightest in his class. His younger brother Von is also with the team and plays goalkeeper.
The entire family was in Malaybalay enjoying the cool breeze and the hotly contested matches.
Rosevale was allowed to play in the semis where they ripped MKids,10-0. That must have scared the guts out of the DCFC parents.
So after the semis, there was another delay as DCFC resumed their baseless protest. The organizers listened to them again. The organizers then asked them what would they want.
DCFC then asked for a plus one goal before the championship would start. Now that’s the most stupid thing that I have ever heard in the world of the beautiful game, a plus one goal before a championship match.
I learned later that the guy representing DCFC was not even a coach. He was not a license coach. He was a parent who would do anything just to secure victory at any cost. A proper football coach who have earned his badges would not dare ask that stupid request or else he would be ridiculed and forever be remembered as a plus one coach.
I pity the DCFC players because their parents themselves never trusted them. The players were very good. Very skillful, very young and very confident. Their only problem was that they were small. But since when football was played by giants?
Just to let the boys play and because it was also getting dark, Rosevale coaches decided to give them a plus one goal. DCFC scored one goal early.
Rosevale responded and the match ended in a 1-1 draw. But because of a plus one goal advantage, DCFC pocketed the hotly contested championship trophy. Were they happy? Of course they were. That was what they fought for from start, win at all cost. Win even if they would face the ridicule of the football world. Never mind Friendship, Fairness and Fairplay.
The Rosevale kids were also happy because they knew from their heart that they won the championship trophy and they were robbed.
For the organizers? We congratulate them for placing Malaybalay in the record books. Let’s call Ripley and Guinness so that they can give them the “Most Stupid Decision” ever award.