Who is responsible for failing to send team to Olympic qualifiers?

The Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) is not sending the Bangladesh team to Myanmar to play the qualifiers of the Asian region of women's football for the Paris Olympics as it failed to collect Tk 6.6 million. But the team defeated Nepal in Kathmandu to win the SAFF women's championship for the first time. The winning girls were felicitated in an open-top bus, a rare event for sports in Bangladesh.

The girls who brought such glory to the nation, who made us dream, could not made it to such a big event like Olympic selection due to lack of funds, which is shocking and unwarranted.

According to Prothom Alo, the qualifiers of the Asian region for the Paris Olympics-2024 are going to be held in Myanmar from 5 to 11 April. Bangladesh's opponents in this competition would have been Iran, Maldives and host Myanmar. Bangladesh women's football team could enhance its experience through matches with the strong opponents. Yet why would the women's football team be deprived of such an opportunity?

BFF says that they have been seeking financial assistance from the Ministry of Youth and Sports as they do not have the necessary funds to send the team to Myanmar. They also sought financial assistance from the Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA). But the tour was finally cancelled due to no positive response from either of the organisations. BFF also had to pay a fine for withdrawing from registration.

Although they are putting the blame on youth and sports ministry and BOA, BFF is responsible for sending the team abroad by arranging the necessary funds. They clearly failed in fulfilling the duty. The ministry of youth says that they could not do anything as BFF wrote them the letter at the eleventh minute. On the other hand, BOA denied that BFF sought financial assistance from them.

The BFF clearly showed unprofessionalism in this regard. BFF president said, "I have been asking for help from everyone for so long. Now the door for is also closed.” We beg to question, why should BFF ask for financial assistance from the Ministry of Youth and Sports to send a team to the tournament? Women's football has sponsors. But the deal signed with the sponsor by BFF showed unprofessionalism. According to the agreement, although they sponsored the league and for the stay in the BFF building, they will not pay any money to play international matches.

Prothom Alo collected Tk. 15 million for BFF for the award and the development of women’s football after winning the SAFF. Prime Minister and the army also provided financial assistance. Couldn't the football team have been sent to Myanmar using that fund? BFF retorted to this, if they pay for international matches with the money the women player will have to starve.

This BFF decision would reverse the women football players dreams and overall progress. It cannot be denied that running camps for age-level teams along with the national team is expensive. But, they are kept in camps and trained to be eligible to compete in international competitions including SAFF. If they cannot participate there, all the arrangements go in vain.

BFF should have a specific plan for the development of women's football. The fact of not being able to send the women's football team to Myanmar due to lack of fund of Tk 6.6 million is unwarranted. How can BFF evade the responsibility?