FIFA awards clothing, equipment to BVIFA in recognition of continued development of football despite COVID-19 challenges

BVIFA awarded clothing & equipment from FIFA as it plans to launch Youth Academy Leagues as of 1st November 2020

As recognition for the work put in by the coaches and players in keeping the game going throughout the unheralded Covid 19 pandemic, the world governing body, FIFA’s, Technical Division has awarded the BVI Football Association a huge bundle of clothing and equipment.

In a letter to the BVIFA, Mr. Steven Martens, FIFA Technical Director, expressed his gratitude for the commitment, hard work and creativity shown by the coaches and demonstrated by the players as local football looks to overcome the many issues thrown up by the pandemic.

Most recently, following the protocols of the Government of the Virgin Islands which have allowed training and practice to resume under official guidelines, the BVIFA and its coaches were able to get youth programmes back up and running on Tortola, Virgin Gorda and Anegada.

According to Dan Neville, the FA’s Technical Director, Jost Van Dyke will soon follow and plans for a Youth Academy League can now also continue.

“We are delighted to be recognized for hard work in getting our programs up and running. The equipment FIFA have so kindly donated will have a huge impact on all players. A massive well done to all the BVIFA staff and a big thank you to Lenny, Jason, Andre and Gareth for their incredible ongoing support,” said Neville.

Apart from a supply of clothing, the shipment from FIFA includes, balls, boots, bibs and shin guards

Noting that now is the time for everyone to come together and live the FIFA values of Fair Play, Team Spirit, Transparency and Innovation, Martens hopes the token of appreciation will go along way to helping the BVIFA to continue it’s development programmes.

A hope shared by Neville, who confirmed the aim of the BVIFA “to put the equipment to good use and further enhance every aspect of football – youth, senior, male or female – in the islands”

The youth programmes are especially important to the BVIFA as well as the clubs as plans are progressing to launch Youth Academy Leagues as of 1st November 2020.

Each of the association’s member clubs have been approached to affiliate U17 and U13 squads of both boys and girls and appoint a qualified coach to run the teams that will then participate in a 5-a-side or 7-a-side League on Fridays and Saturdays.

So far 6 clubs have accepted the invitation, the Wolues, the Panthers, the Sugar Boys, Sea Argo, Old Madrid, VG United, Lion Heart, One Caribbean and the Rebels.

Once the BVIFA receives Government approval, schools’ programmes are also ready to be rolled out, so getting the youths back training across the Territory will be pivotal in the competitive future of the game.

BVIFA re-launches Greenland stadium drainage and retaining wall project

Source: VINO

BVI Football Association relaunch FIFA funded the Greenland stadium drainage and retaining wall project. Photo: Provided

British Virgin Islands Football Association (BVIFA), President, Andrew Bickerton, accompanied by his General Secretary Mrs Julianna Luke, recently signed contracts at their new temporary office in Greenland, Long Look , East End to mark the re-launch of their Long Look, East End drainage and retaining wall project.

The projects which started in 2016 project was abruptly stopped due to the passing of hurricane Irma during which the territory sustained immeasurable damage.

The disclosure was made by way of a public statement on August 29, 2018, by BVIFA which indicated that the contracts were signed by the BVIFA President, Mr Bickerton , Ms Luke,  General Secretary of the BVIFA, Cornell Penn of Smokey Construction LTD and Dion Stoutt, the Project Manager.

A second signing was done by President Bickerton, General Secretary Ms Luke, Owner of Clarence Fahie Construction Company, Clarence Fahie  and witnessed by project manager Dion A. Stoutt.
A pleased President Bickerton, speaking at at the signing ceremony stating he was very happy that the project was on its way again.

Mr Bickerton confirmed that the BVIFA has indeed been funded by FIFA for this next stage of the project which is the completion of the drainage on the northern end of the field and the putting up of the retaining wall on the southern end of the field.

“These are very important to the project as a whole because, once this has been completed, the BVIFA can then put in the athletics track.” said Bickerton.

Mr Bickerton also disclosed that FIFA have also approved the next stage of the project which is the foundation of the grandstand “so with some of the funding already in place the BVIFA would be able to get that stage of the project on the way very probably after the end of the hurricane season, as it is a much larger project.”

New CONCACAF rules require all BVIFA member clubs to become licensed

By BVI Football Association

(l-r) Paul Hewlett, BVIFA General Secretary, Alfredo Quiroz, CONCACAF, and Andy Bickerton, BVIFA President. Photo: BVIFA/Charlie Jackson

(l-r) Paul Hewlett, BVIFA General Secretary, Alfredo Quiroz, CONCACAF, and Andy Bickerton, BVIFA President. Photo: BVIFA/Charlie Jackson

According to Alfredo Quiroz of the The Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football, (CONCACAF), Club Licensing Department, all the member clubs of the local F.A. will have to become licensed.

“Football is changing and CONCACAF wants to make the game more attractive, as well as more organized, from those that run clubs to those that go watch,” said Mr. Quiroz. The statement was made at a meeting to which all clubs had been invited and which took place on Wednesday 18th January at the BVIFA Head Office.

Moving clubs into the process of falling into line with both FIFA and CONCACAF guidelines has begun, with a National Criteria to be reached by the end of 2017 and more immediate target dates for the various stages of completion by the end of March 2017.

All Clubs will have to fill out and submit four online documents as well as complete eleven additional criteria, such as naming a Head Coach, General Manager, Media, Finance and Marketing personnel, budgets and various legal documents.

“Going forward the process will be constantly reviewed and made more challenging as we look to develop stronger structures and levels of control,” said Quiroz.

Databases will be built of all CONCACAF’S member clubs and used to create effective tools for planning future competitions, such as the Champions’ League, where it will now become possible to see, at a glance, the type of facilities and infrastructure each participating club has.

“Sanctions are yet to be determined for non-compliant clubs,” explained Quiroz. “CONCACAF certainly won’t be coming in and saying if you are not licensed, then you cannot play, but there have to be some incentives to comply.”

The local FA office remains the first point of contact to assist the clubs in the process and provide support, but then, once the online forms are submitted. a ‘first instance’ body will be set up locally to review the applications and grant licenses.

There will also be an appeals body, but according to Quiroz it is a win win situation and clubs should not be put off by change or in adhering to the new policies and programmes implemented by CONCACAF.

“The benefits are there for all to see,” he concluded. “We will all be doing things a little better, step by step, for players, fans, sponsors. It can help identify the need for improvements on and off the field, increase the knowledge of support staff and help everyone understand what we need to do to move forward.”

BVIFA supports Infantino as new FIFA President

By BVI Football Association

Avanell Morton, Andy Bickerton and Paul Hewlett in attendance at the FIFA Congress. Photo: Provided

Avanell Morton, Andy Bickerton and Paul Hewlett in attendance at the FIFA Congress. Photo: Provided

The British Virgin Islands Football Association (BVIFA) President, Mr. Andy Bickerton, along with Mr. Avanell Morton, Assistant Secretary / Operations and Mr. Paul Hewlett, General Secretary, all returned to the Territory last week after the FIFA Elections happy with the result and excited by the future of Football.

Gianni Infantino was elected as the ninth President of the World Governing Body of Football after the second ballot with 115 of 207 total votes, holding off the challenge from Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa.

“We (the FA) supported Infantino in the second round because of declarations made by him in his manifesto and speech at the FIFA Congress,” ” commented Bickerton. “He stated that every member of FIFA should have a national stadium and that’s encouraging as well as his promise to look at increasing the development fund distributions, which would mean the FA could assist Virgin Gorda with improving the Festival ground in a similar way to what is happening at East End.”

Prince Ali Bin el Hussein had been the original first choice of the FA, but once it became apparent that he was struggling after the first round, the FA decided to go with Infantino.

“We intend to continue lobbying FIFA on other issues such as representation rules to play for the country and will also be making a case with the new Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) president when elected in May of this year to bring change to the current rules,” concluded Bickerton.

Morton hailed the election of Infantino as a breath of fresh air. “The BVI and the Caribbean will benefit from having Infantino as the new head of world football,” he stated. “After the result there was a breath of fresh air, relief , joy and happiness. It was a great decision for the entire football family.”

CONCACAF member associations also voted unanimously, during its annual congress held the day before the FIFA congress, to approve a comprehensive package of reforms, which were first outlined in the CONCACAF Reform Framework and later drafted by CONCACAF’s Statutes Reform Committee, at the Confederation’s XXII extraordinary congress. CONCACAF’s revised statutes will become effective immediately as the confederation and its member associations begin implementing the reforms.

The reforms to CONCACAF’s statutes fundamentally change the governance structure of football in the region and set new standards for accountability and transparency within international sports organizations. Once fully implemented, CONCACAF’s new structure will ensure that decisions regarding the confederation’s operations are made in the best interest of CONCACAF member associations, confirm that there is strong external oversight of the CONCACAF Council and General Secretariat, and affirm that CONCACAF’s resources are being utilized to achieve the confederation’s mission of developing and promoting football in the region.

FIFA Vice-President to visit BVI


FIFA Vice-President and candidate for the Presidency, Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan, will be arriving in the BVI on Thursday 16th April, 2015. Photo: Provided

FIFA Vice-President and candidate for the Presidency, Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan, will be arriving in the BVI on Thursday 16th April, 2015. Photo: Provided

FIFA Vice-President and candidate for the Presidency, Prince Ali bin Al Hussein of Jordan, will be arriving in the Territory on Thursday 16th April, 2015, to make a courtesy call on the Premier, visit the site of the new stadium in East End and to meet with members of the BVIFA Executive and Officials.

Prince Ali, who back in January announced intentions to challenge long-tenured President of FIFA, Sepp Blatter at the 65th FIFA Congress in Zurich on May 29, will visit the $3M project site on Friday morning and then, following a meeting with the Premier, Dr. Orlando D Smith, will spend some time at the BVIFA Head Office, talking with Executives, Officials and Coaches.

According to 1st Vice President, Aubrey Liburd, “This is a very important visit for the BVIFA as we are in the process of building the new stadium, and also for him to see what we are doing for football as an association and for the youths in the Territory. Also we are looking forward to hearing his vision for football in general and his plans or initiatives for the smaller FIFA Members such as ourselves.”

The BVIFA was finally given approval for the project, part of the FIFA Goal Programme, by the Development Committee at a meeting chaired by FIFA Vice-President, Issa Hayatou in the presence of the Chairman of the FIFA Audit and Compliance Committee, Domenico Scala, back in March 2014.

The project includes a 400 meter track field, regulation-sized football field with associated facilities, netball court/volleyball court, concession stands and over 200 parking spaces. There will also be the construction of an access road between the parking lot and stadium by Andy’s Car Wash.

In relation to contributions for the project, the BVIOC is expected to contribute $250,000 for the running track and the BVIFA will be funding $1M-$1.5M along with assistance in maintenance and profitability of the facility (football events, sponsorship/commercial activities).