Iurii Vetokha: "CFU corresponds to the national football federations level"

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Photo: Крымский футбольный союз

Crimean football union was created on July 9, 2015. The organization established by the two football federations of the peninsula, it has successfully overcome all the ways of becoming and is preparing to hold the fourth professional Premier League championship of Crimea now. The CFU president Iurii Vetokha told to the press service of the Union about the development, problems and achievements in an interview.

– Iurii Aleksandrovich, how are you estimating the CFU work for the last three years?

– I think that one of the main achievements of the Crimean football union for three years of existence of our organization was the development of professional football. We managed to build a clear system of championship conducting among eight professional clubs, which was never before in the Crimea. Of course, a lot of things did not work out at first, but today we managed to raise to a high professional level a lot of the moments in Crimean football. We have a clear division of responsibilities and powers within the organization, which contributes to fruitful work. I think that mostly we have managed with the set tasks and our union corresponds to the national football associations level.

– It is impossible not to note the development of children`s football on the peninsula ...

– Of course, now we see a real football boom of children and youth ages in the Crimea. We have the record number of teams, which took part in the Children and Youth’s Football League. The number of children who want to become football players is growing from year to year, for the most part parents lead their children in football sections. Not just the number of regional but also international football tournaments among children have grown seriously in Crimea. The opening of the Crimean bridge helped greatly in it: now much more children`s teams come to us to conduct training sessions and participate in competitions.

– The year 2018 was proclaimed the Children and Youth`s football Year in the Crimea. What had been done already for this period?

– We managed to raise football to a higher level not only in specialized sports institutions, but also among ordinary general education schools, thanks to the support of local authorities. There are more than three thousand schoolchildren from all corners of the peninsula took part only in the Cup of the Head of the Republic of Crimea. Speaking honestly: such large number of participants was pleasant surprise for us. I want to thank to the Head of the Republic mr Sergey Aksenov and the Chairman of the State Council of Crimea mr Vladimir Konstantinov for comprehensive support of the football development in the region.

If we go back to the development of professional football, what the most difficult problems faced the Crimean football union for this period?

– The first and most important difficulty for us was the situation with sports facilities. Their condition, to put it mildly, is lame, and most stadiums were not suitable for the CFU requirements and also for elementary safety standards in 2015. Now the stadiums, which host the matches of the CFU Premier-League, meet the minimum requirements and entered to the All-Russian Register of Sports.

The second global problem for us was the lack of a sufficient number of coaching and teaching staff specialists. Coaches must be training regularly and receive appropriate licenses, about it we have spoken many times with colleagues from UEFA. But this issue remains unresolved due to a variety of reasons. But we do not give up and do everything possible so that Crimean coaches can continue to training and receive appropriate certificates.

Another acute problem was the situation with the referee body. We catastrophically lack of highly qualified referees, but the situation has changed appreciably in the recent years: we managed to pull up young referees, and we were joined by experienced Crimean referees who worked at various European cup tournaments. It had already positive effect on the refereeing quality at the championship. Let me note that the School of young referee created by the CFU continues its work, the pupils of it judge the matches of the Children and Youth football League of Crimea.

Iurii Aleksandrovich, which game of the Crimean Premier-League you remember the most for the last three seasons?

– It is difficult to pick out a one match. There were many dramatic duels where everything was decided in the last seconds. Of course, confrontation of our grandees stands apart – "TSK-Tavriya" and "Sevastopol", who gave fans a lot of unforgettable emotions from the first game under the aegis of the CFU. Any match of these teams is tense and unpredictable. The game between "Sevastopol" and "Yevpatoriya" is remembered in the season 2016/17: Sevastopol managed to turn the match around and win with a score of 4:3 after losing score 0:3 in the during the game.

– The 4th CFU PL championship ahead. What are your expectations from the new season?

– There are many fears always when the new championship begins. Two teams from the amateur championship will play for the first time in the new season – they are "Gvardeets" and "Incomsport-Avangard". It is important for us to provide maximum assistance to these clubs at new professional league for them. According to the CFU Cup matches we see a huge difference between teams of amateurs and professionals, first of all in the organizational plan. The Crimean football union task is to help newcomers integrate into professional football.

– What do you want to wish to the Crimean football supporters?

– First of all, I want to express my gratitude to the Crimean football supporters, who regularly come to the stadiums to support their team. Crimean football union is doing everything possible to ensure that spectators feel themselves comfortable as possible at the stands during the matches under the aegis of the CFU. We work for the football supporters, and the stadiums attendance is one of the main performance appraisal of our activities. I am sure that the new season of the Crimean Premier-League will bring many joyful and positive emotions to the football supporters.