Club v Country

Kev the MackemContributor ISeptember 11, 2008

The club verses country row has blown up again, in a rather strange way.  Jack Warner the CONCACAF President and FIFA vice president has launched a scathing attack on Roy Keane and Sunderland AFC. He does not hold back on a letter he sent to Sunderland AFC (which was also sent or leaked to the press)


In a letter to the Black Cats boss, Warner wrote:


“Dear Mr Keane,

“Your continuing insensitivity and disrespect for countries such as the twin island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago are hereby noted.

“Such insensitivity and disrespect were again most recently displayed by your having summoned Mr Dwight Yorke to return to England, thus rendering him unable to represent the country of his birth in a crucial World Cup qualifying preliminary versus the USA tomorrow (Wednesday September 10 instant).

“Your callous disrespect for the rights of ’small’ countries to have their players represent them as enshrined in FIFA regulations reveals a mean streak in your character and one which will not endear you or Sunderland to football aficionados of such countries. It is a dangerous path to tread.

“Yet, the Trinidad and Tobago Federation will, in this instance, neither insist on, nor pursue its right to have you and Sunderland make Mr Yorke available to represent his country, but such refusal or reluctance on its part ought not to be interpreted as a sign of weakness by the Federation.

“Please be guided accordingly.”


While I like to see players from my team do well on the international stage, if someone were to ask me ‘club’ or ‘country’ there would be only one answer (club in case you were wondering). 

Who does Jack Warner think he is?  Yes he can sent a letter to Sunderland asking why Yorke was recalled, but don’t give that letter to the press.  Some of the press have picked up on the letter meaning that Warner and CONCACAF may not vote for the world cup to be held in England!  How can a federation of ‘small’ footballing nations hold the power to vote for or against if a country can have the world cup.  The letter is full of veiled threats.


He talks of ‘insensitivity and disrespect’ this is from the footballing leader of  the Trinidad and Tobago FA, who after Jones was injured had his knee wrapped in cling film!!!(Whilst playing against England in a game played to hopefully gain the vote needed for 2018).  On other occasions players who had played games for Trinidad and Tobago we told to make their own way back to their clubs.


Well if you read this Mr Warner…  I thank Trinidad and Tobago for the wonderful talented players your country has produced.  But when it comes down to it they are paid well by their clubs, so if for some reason they are recalled or stopped playing in some meaningless friendly please contact the club and not conduct your business in public.  

Just found out another part of this story…


Roy was asked during his Friday interview about the letter, and in what is  typical Keane he told the reporters that Jack Warner was a ‘clown’


Quote –

"The man's a clown," Keane said Friday. "He sent me a letter and he was quite happy to give it to the media. I spoke to him on Wednesday and I told him what I thought about him and where I think he should go. He is writing these letters and it is always under the FIFA heading just to impress everybody. If he is vice president of FIFA, then God help us."

            "He (Warner) has not written me a letter about Kenwyne Jones, who got injured playing in a friendly match. They selected Carlos Edwards last year when he was out with a broken leg,"


Sunderland claimed Yorke, 36, had been given a one-year contract extension after promising he would only play for his country if it did not interfere with his domestic commitments. 


Again you get in the way of Roy and you can be expected to be run over!!