Fiji Football Association chief executive Mohammed Yusuf has made it clear that coaches have the final say in fielding the best 11 at any level of a football match.
While responding to claims made by Mohammed Ifraz, the father of Fiji Under 20 player Mustafa Mohammed, where he claimed that his son was given unfair treatment in the national team, Yusuf explained that the former head coach Rodolfo Zapata was in charge of the team to the International Friendlies in Indonesia and only he had the authority and the final say to field the players in the games.
Ifraz in a social media post claimed that his son knocked the interest to withdraw from the Junior Bula Boys team ahead of the FIFA Under 20 World Cup due to lack of game time in the national team.
“Recently my son, Mustafa Mohammed returned back home to Australia from the Fiji National U-20 team. To put things into perspective, Mustafa since joining the team last year from trials to the tour of New Zealand, to OFC qualifiers and to the Indonesia trip fell on the outer with the management and till date Fiji Football has not been able to provide an explanation on why he was treated the way he was.”
He demanded Fiji FA have a review of his son’s treatment by the coach and management and a formal explanation provided to him and his family.
“For all the effort and talent of being coming out of a reputable A league, Brisbane Roar academy to travel and being away from home in Fiji and not getting deserved game time over multiple games only knocked his confidence and desire to be part of the team anymore.”
“Mustafa after returning from Indonesia made the decision to return back home on what has been a very negative experience for such a fine prospect for the Fiji National U20 team,” he stated.
“It is true that Mustafa has withdrawn. He has gone back because the team management probably did not field him in Indonesia and the coach was responsible. He decided to withdraw so good luck to him,” Yusuf told FijiLive.
“He getting a game in Indonesia is totally dependent on the coaches and we as administrators have no say in that. The reason is best known to the coaches why he was not fielded and if he had any issues. We wish Mustafa all the best in his future endeavors.”