Sport

Tappa finally signs 4-year contract

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

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After months of protracted discussions, the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) has finally announced that Head Coach Theodore Whitmore has signed a four-year contract effective June 1, 2018 through to December 31, 2022.

Whitmore had been at the helm for over two years after German coach Winfried Schaefer was forced out in 2016.

The former Reggae Boyz star player resigned in frustration on Friday, April 6 after his efforts to have meaningful dialogue with the JFF proved futile. But a week later, Whitmore withdrew his letter after the intervention of Minister of Sports Olivia Grange.

“Both parties are satisfied with the terms and conditions of the contract and now look forward to planning and executing on preparation for the senior team's engagement in upcoming games and tournaments,” noted a JFF release issued yesterday.

No details of the remuneration package agreed on were released, but it is believed to be nearer to the $1 million per month, as per Jamaica Observer sources.

One of the reported banes of contention was the reported US$3,000 per month salary that was offered compared to the US$45,000 per month Schaefer commanded during his tenure.

However, just before Whitmore resigned in April, an Observer source who wanted to remain anonymous, revealed that an improved offer of $750,000 per month was on the table for Whitmore at the proposed meeting that never materialised because of one reason or the other.

Efforts to get a comment from Whitmore or JFF president Michael Ricketts proved futile as their cellphones rang unanswered.

Following his change of heart and withdrawal of his resignation after meeting with Minister Grange and Ricketts on Friday, April 13, Whitmore said: “I'm very pleased with what transpired at today's meeting between myself, the JFF and the minister.

“Recently I tendered my resignation and I must tell the public that I'm here to withdraw it based on what transpired from today's meeting, and I'm looking forward to get back to doing what I love and that is coaching, and to make sure that the nation's football is priority and we move forward with myself and the federation and the ministry to make it a success.”

Whitmore was drafted in as interim head coach by the late JFF President Captain Horace Burrell, after the federation had parted ways with Schaefer who, coincidentally, had replaced Whitmore during the Reggae Boyz's struggle to progress to the Brazil 2014 World Cup Finals.

As interim head coach Whitmore guided the Reggae Boyz to second place in the 2017 Caribbean Cup, and received rave reviews weeks later when he engineered a second successive runners-up finish at the CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament in the United States of America.

He was asked to continue in the role after Ricketts won the presidency to complete Burrell's remaining two years in office, and was eventually appointed to the job last October even though he had not accepted some terms of the contract, including a low salary package, among other issues.

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