It seems the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) will have its way no matter what.
Yesterday, Randy Harris, president of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) and another CFU member who opted to keep his identity secret for fear of repercussions by the sport's governing body, offered insights of absolute gloom and doom for the T&T Football Association (TTFA), if the team of former president William Wallace and his vice-presidents Clynt Taylor, Joseph Sam Phillip and Susan Joseph-Warrick, continues the battle for removal of the Normalisation Committee which was appointed by the FIFA in March.
The actions of the TTFA constitute a direct violation of the Statutes of FIFA and the governing body will not submit to the wishes of the TTFA to prevent Member Associations from taking similar action in the future, Harris explained yesterday, hence why the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) has been established as the court where all disputes at FIFA can be resolved.
The United TTFA and FIFA will head to the Court of Appeal in Port-of-Spain on October 19, just over two months after Justice Carol Gobin in the T&T High Court ruled that the matter can be settled in the local courts, a decision that FIFA has since appealed.
Harris said he is deeply hurt by the United TTFA's persistence to move forward with the case as the penalty will be too severe for the country.
"A suspension can mean football will be the loser here, as nobody would want to have anything to do with the TTFA. No matches can be played, no World Cup or Gold Cup Qualifiers for one of the brightest nations in the Caribbean."
The other CFU member said a ban will immediately render the normalisation committee null and void.
"There will be no one to run football in T&T, but Wallace and his team can do it if they choose, they will just not be recognised by the FIFA. A suspension can be for any amount of time, three years to five years etc and during that time Trinidad will only be able to play against Tobago, as no other FIFA-registered football nation will risk the chance of being sanctioned itself, to play against T&T."
In addition to other dire consequences of a FIFA ban which includes no funding, the inability to take part in FIFA-sanctioned tournaments, such as World Cup qualifiers, CONCACAF Gold Cup, Caribbean and or CONCACAF Club Championships, another detrimental aspect of a FIFA ban includes the prevention of young potential footballers from getting options to be exposed to the international football community where trials and contracts await them.
"Professionals such as referees who are scheduled for matches by the CONCACAF will now be blacklisted as CONCACAF could do nothing to help non-members," said the CFU member, adding that gaining re-entry into FIFA will be another problem.
"Now FIFA will have its way no matter what. If T&T is suspended then there will be no one to run the affairs of the sport, however, the members of the normalisation committee, since being appointed by the FIFA, will have the option to voluntarily manage the sport, and if they are able to do so uninterruptedly for the duration of the suspension, then Robert Hadad can make a case for our return as a member."
He added, "My prediction is that FIFA will not attend the Appeal and would instead decide to suspend the TTFA, and I don't think it's being a bully or anything like that but just the fact that the FIFA has rules and all members are to abide by them if they want to be a part, that's all."
FIFA, through its General Secretary Fatma Samoura gave the TTFA until September 16 to remove the matter from the court or else face sanctions. Coincidentally, the FIFA Congress will take place on September 18 and it is being predicted that FIFA's heavy hand can be felt there and then.