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By Neto Baptiste

Long standing Vice President in the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association (ABFA), Gwen Salmon, believes that her work over the last 10 years has earned her another term in office.

Speaking recently on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, Salmon highlighted a number of areas where, in her estimation, she would have positively assisted in the growth of the sport.

“I would like to continue the work that I’ve been doing with the development in football in Antigua and Barbuda. I want to continue the educational programmes, I want to continue grooming the individuals, officials, match officials and this year we started with the match officials,” he said.

“This was something we should have done since 2020, after the league, but because of Covid we had to put them back. So, I sat down with the general secretary [Rohan Hector] and said ‘let’s see if we could get those programmes on Zoom’; so we have started. We finished our managers’ course and we are now going into club administration,” she added.

Salmon, head of the football association’s competition committee, also took some credit for what she calls improvements in the structure of the FA’s top tier.

“As an international match coordinator, I brought the premier league up to the standard of international play in terms of how international matches are played. We play under the same guidelines of international matches and I am looking to do that in the First and Second Division, where we will reach out to the clubs to send individuals to train for match officials and get that same thing down in the First and Second Division. I have assisted the association with development programmes, coaching courses, and stuff like that,” the Hoppers FC president said. 

The administrator, who has headed the association’s women’s football committee for almost a decade, believes her input has also assisted with moving the women’s version of the game forward.

“I took it as far as I think I could take it and then I reached out to Debu [Rolston Williams] who was technical director at the time, and I told him that we needed help going forward to take it to the next level because whenever we entered a tournament we would come out of our group and go into the Caribbean finals, but we are not going beyond that so I reached out to him about it. I spoke to the GS and the president about getting somebody to help us with the development of women’s football programme to take it to the next level,” Salmon said.

The ABFA elections, constitutionally due this month, has been delayed because of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.