Veteran football players regroup to salvage pride | Sunday Observer

Veteran football players regroup to salvage pride

13 August, 2023
Sunil Perera, the secretary of the Sri Lanka Soccer Masters Association addressing the media showing details of mismanagement of past Football Federation officials as the president of the Masters Association Thilak Pieris looks on (Pic Sudath Malaweera)

The Sri Lanka Soccer Masters Association comprising of former national players is looking for ways to bring back the game to its once prestigious position.

With this intention they are setting the ground to educate the followers and players and also to put the Football Federation on to the right track.

The Chairman of the Sri Lanka Soccer Masters Association Thilak Pieris along with his Committee held a press briefing in Colombo on Tuesday to explain the future plans for the future.

Peiris addressing the media said that during the past three decades the officials of the Federation had failed to make good use of the funds from FIFA and the Asian body to develop the game in Sri Lanka.

He said funds meant for the promotion and development of football were instead used by administrators for their personal gains.

“This is the main reason why we want to see that football management gets a most wanted change. Their management failures were the main causes for the bans from FIFA and AFC.

“These two global and regional organizations too understood the failures of the Federation. Our team was placed 121 in the international ranks but management failures made us slump to 201,” said Peiris.

The Sri Lanka Soccer Masters Association is of the view that a new set of young and energetic administrators capable of promoting the sport has to be brought in to replace the present office bearers for a sustainable future of football in Sri Lanka.

“Our Association has decided to bring in Dakshitha Sumathipala into football administration to make a significant turning point in the landscape of Sri Lankan football,” said Peiris.

According to Peiris, Sumathipala who played for Sri Lanka has given his consent to contest an election of office bearers in a bid to take over the leadership to salvage football in Sri Lanka to its former status.

Sumathipala emerged as a prominent figure in Sri Lanka's football landscape during his school career at Royal College and later wearing the Sri Lanka jersey.