Posted: Thursday, March 18, 2021. 4:39 pm CST.
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: Minister of Sports, Kevin Bernard, joined the virtual press conference the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) had today to wish the Belize Men’s National Football (BMNT) team good luck in the World Cup qualifiers.
The press conference was called by the FFB to announce the 23 players who had made the team that will represent the country in the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 qualifiers which kick off next week.
“Go ahead and do your thing,” Bernard told the team via ZOOM. “We will be here rooting for you all as a country and as a people of Belize.”
Belize plays their first WC qualifier match against Haiti at the Stade Sylvio Cator in Port au Prince at 3:00 p.m. Belize time on Thursday, March 25.
The team then flies to the Dominican Republic on Friday for the second game on Tuesday, March 30, against Turks and Caicos Islands at the Estadio Panamericano in Santo Domingo at 3:00 p.m. Belize time as well.
“I would like to express of course my appreciation to the FFB and to the team, Team Belize, for their dedication to the sport, but most of all their dedication to this country,” Bernard said as he opened his short message to the BMNT, the Belize Jaguars.
“And I want to extend on behalf of the Ministry, myself, and all of us, our utmost support, and I want to wish them all the best in the game that they’re going to play,” minister Bernard continued. “I know that you all will do this with heart and soul, you all will do that with Belize in your mind, and you all do this because you love your country, you love the sport. So, as the minister responsible I just want to say to you all ‘God’s blessings.’ Wish you all the very best during these games.”
“I know that a lot of work has been taking place over the few weeks at the training at the camp and I want to thank you for your cooperation and your participation,” Bernard added acknowledging the hard work the team has put in since their training started, in isolation from friends and family, on February 22 at the FFB Headquarters in Belmopan.
The second game against the Turks and Caicos Islands is in effect Belize’s home game, but because of the COVID-19 restrictions, the game will be played in Santo Domingo.
“I know that a lot of work has been taking place over the few weeks at the training at the camp and I want to thank you for your cooperation and your participation,” Bernard said apologetically since the Government had denied the FFB a request to allow the game to be played in Belmopan.
“We know that we would have loved to do things differently but due to the current pandemic, we had to make some adjustments,” minister Bernard explained. “So, to the organizers, to the president and all the committee members of FFB thank you for cooperating with the Ministry’s request as well.”
“I just want to tell the team members ‘Go ahead and do your thing,’” Bernard exhorted the BMNT. “We will be here rooting for you all as a country and as a people of Belize.”
The BMNT travels to Haiti on Sunday.
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