Fustal the key to develop local game - Whitmore

January 05, 2016

Newly appointed Jamaica Futsal coach Theodore 'Tappa' Whitmore says that the five-a-side version of the game can help to develop Jamaica's football.

Whitmore selected a 16-man group that began preparation for the nation's first appearance in the FIFA World Futsal qualifiers.

Jamaica is down to participate in the Caribbean Football Union Futsal championship scheduled for January 22-26 in Havana, Cuba.

"If you see all over the world where football is going on there is futsal. We're short in terms of dealing with certain aspects of the football, so we have taken the initiative to take on futsal," Whitmore said.

"Futsal, we know, is new to Jamaica. It is a start and we have to start somewhere," the former Reggae Boyz player and coach added.

With regard to the development of football in Jamaica, Whitmore believes the small- side game can help.

"Futsal is a different version, it is faster. It will help if we are serious about it," he said.

The Jamaica futsal team started a training camp last Saturday and Whitmore said it is one step at a time.

"The players are grasping certain things although it is a bit new to them. It is a work in progress," the man who scored two goals against Japan in Jamaica's historic appearance at the 1998 FIFA World Cup Finals said.

Whitmore confirmed that he also plans to play in the CFU championship.

Jamaica is scheduled to face Guadeloupe on January 22 in the opening game at the Sala Polivante Kid Chocolate Complex.

The top three teams from the CFU will advance to the CONCACAF Championship from May 8-15 in Costa Rica. The top four will advance to the 2016 FIFA World Futsal Championship in July in Colombia.

Futsal is a variant of association football that is played indoors. It originated in Uruguay in 1930.

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