Posted: Wednesday, May 17, 2023. 4:29 pm CST.
Player brandishes a machete at fans at the Santa Elena Sports Complex in Cayo last weekend.
By Rubén Morales Iglesias: The Football Federation of Belize (FFB) said it is deeply disturbed by the recent incidents and brawls that took place during football matches over the weekend, including an officially sanctioned FFB competition. The FFB said it must address these regrettable events and restate their position on violence in football.
“The FFB categorically condemns any acts of violence or aggression within the football community. As the governing body for football in Belize, we firmly believe in the values of fair play, respect, and sportsmanship,” the FFB said in a press release.
“These core principles lie at the heart of our sport and must be upheld at all times, irrespective of the game’s official or unofficial status.”
The FFB said it will conduct a thorough investigation of the game under its jurisdiction to uncover the full details surrounding these brawls and identify the perpetrators.
“Our investigation will be conducted diligently and impartially, with the aim of taking appropriate action to ensure such incidents do not recur in the future,” the FFB said.
“While it is disheartening to note that one of the brawls occurred during an officially sanctioned FFB competition, we want to emphasize that this is an isolated incident and does not reflect the overall spirit of Belizean football.”
The FFB said it is committed to ensuring a safe and respectful environment for all participants in football, regardless of the game’s status.
“Football has always been a unifying force, bringing communities together and fostering positive values,” the FFB reiterated.
“It is crucial that we collectively uphold these values, standing against any form of violence or misconduct.”
The FFB said it will continue working tirelessly to promote a culture of respect and fair play in its officially sanctioned leagues and tournaments and beyond.
The football governing body asked all those involved in football, clubs, players, coaches, referees, and fans, to join them in their efforts to ensure that football remains a sport of friendship, skill, and mutual respect.
“It is through our collective commitment that we can uphold the integrity of the game and provide a safe and enjoyable experience for all involved,” the FFB punctuated.
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