Former T&T head coach, Dr Hannibal Najjar, has held out little hope for the T&T Football Association's (TTFA) appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), against FIFA’s sudden take-over of the organisation.
“I don’t think they have a chance in hell or heaven to be represented because I don’t think we’ve gotten ourselves strong enough,” Dr Najjar told CNC3 TV.
“They don’t have enough experience in them and enough contacts to see who they would be able to call to get some kind of assistance on what they could do.
“To come in and move them out in the first place … means they were the wrong choice. You never thought they would’ve won.”
In a sudden move last month, football’s governing body announced it was replacing the William Wallace-led TTFA executive with a normalisation committee, just four months after being elected.
This followed an assessment of the TTFA finances carried out by FIFA which revealed “extremely low overall financial management methods, combined with a massive debt”.
With the TTFA “facing a very real risk of insolvency and illiquidity”, FIFA said it would take charge of the daily operations of the organisation for the next two years so that “corrective measures [could] be applied urgently”.
However, Wallace pushed back against the decision, announcing the TTFA had retained legal counsel and would “oppose FIFA’s injustice” at the CAS in Lausanne, Switzerland.
Dr Najjar, who led T&T in a handful of matches before quitting in 2003, said he had been left “traumatised” by FIFA’s actions.
“It’s a mess, not only the last few weeks, but it (TTFA) has been running as a messy affair for the last few years,” said Dr Najjar.
“But over the last few weeks given what I’ve seen, heard, understood, didn’t understand but estimated from my own judgement … like the current regime that has been ousted, I’m somewhat traumatized by the quick action and I think maybe hasty assessment of whatever it is that made them (FIFA) feel that they could come in and normalise things.”
Last month, Caribbean Football Union boss, Randy Harris, said the TTFA challenge at the level of CAS would be “very difficult to win”.