KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: Trinidad & Tobago football officials have conceded defeat in their struggle to prevent FIFA from imposing a normalisation committee on the troubled TTFA.

The association and world federation had been at loggerheads since March after the latter dissolved the executive of the cash-strapped association and sought to impose a temporary administration.

TTFA president William Wallace has tried to take the fight to the Court of Arbitration for Sport and, after considering that route too costly, approached the local High Court.

A judge issued a stay pending a substantive hearing but FIFA responded by warning that such a breach of statutes would lead to the suspension of Trinidad & Tobago from membership and thus international competition.

The financial consequences were reckoned as too onerous by a TTFA members’ meeting which voted 21-8 with three abstentions to advise a withdrawal of legal action.

A statement said:

It is fair to say that the overwhelming majority of representatives were motivated by fear of Fifa’s threat to suspend TTFA. Indeed, several who voted to have the legal case withdrawn did so while openly stating their support for the principles on which United TTFA stood against Fifa.

This fear was exacerbated by the imminent draw for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup, to be held on 28 September, from which Trinidad and Tobago would be excluded if we were to be suspended by Fifa. A ‘convenient’ development for Fifa.

The signatories to this statement have decided to follow the clear wish of the membership. President William Wallace and 1st vice-president Clynt Taylor have advised us that they have instructed our legal representatives to withdraw the High Court claim against Fifa.

FIFA will be content at seeing an end to the standoff but also relieved that the regulation barring action in the civil courts has not been tested to the full.