On Friday, on February 22 Georgian Spring football season was officially opened. In Vake, at "Mikheil Meskhi", Super Cup match was held between "Dila" and "Zestafoni".1/8 final matches of Georgian Cup will follow it and on March 9 will be started the second stage of National Championship. Besides some problems there are some good changes in winter. A lot of Georgian clubs had meetings in Turkey. Such things did not happen in last year. We wanted to start with this topic with Rezi Arveladze the general secretary of Georgian National Football Federation. But he changed the topic and started with the statement which was made by "Georgian Football Fan" on Wednesday: there must be held special elections in Georgian Football Federation.
- What about the statement of "Fans League"?
- We can sit and talk in any case, we can improve what is possible to improve, we can cooperate. As for special elections, we have already stated our position and will repeat once again, either according to Georgian or UEFA regulations, legitimacy of the authority of Georgian football federation is not under a question mark. In case of need Michael Platini the president of UEFA is ready to state his as well as UEFA position. There are always problems in football, but we work according the course what we have chosen and no matter how many meetings we will hold about it, we will not achieve an agreement.
- At the begining of winter several clubs had finance problems. In January-February almost every club left for Turkey. Even journalist was sent to Antalya, because everyone was there, in fact there was nothing happening in Georgia.
- It is very good that so many clubs went to Turkey. But all these have its reasons. Supposedly interior competition makes the necessarity of holding meetings. GFF also has some contributions in it. In the nearest future we hope that we will increase prize money for clubs. If we have 18 clubs with a good budget, will have meetings in Georgia and abroad twice a year. Then there will be time of carrying out some marketing: transfer policy, TV rights, fans, logo, atributes, tickets for match, web-site, informational banks.
Each club has to have simple conditions, which will be necessary for international matches. For example, several days ago we bought a special program "Wisecount" which provides all kind of information about the rival. We gave right of using this program to 21clubs of League. For a half and year this program will be free for them. GFF is a partner of this company and we have some discounts.
An infrastructure consists of such details. What is necessary for this? Weather, sparring matches, technical conditions, good feeding, a good vitaminization and a comfort traveling. All these will reflect on championship.
- Gia Isiani the manager of "Dila" has represented an interesting project, which is called "Increasing of The Role of Government in Improving Football in Regions". It is a quite large project. According to this project, the government has to finance the clubs for three years. The main thing is forming a good budget and a right managment.
- I have not read his project. The government must not help to anyone. It is an ugly thing, depend on the authority of some region, who might not love football, basketball, wrestling and according it define the attitude towards some kind of sports. For developing football the government has its obligations. Of course social issues are more important than football for country but sport is also a healthy life-style. As for sponsor, he might be found any time.
- What about prospects of Georgian national team?
- I will not be true if I make some extra expects. Football is a very popular in Georgia, everyone guesses and calculates that going through this group is very difficult. To my mind very difficult matches are ahead us. I will not start calculating points, if we estimate our possibilities in an objective way, Georgian team will fight for the third place. For this it is necessary to beat Finland in Tbilisi and in the rest matches to gain planned or unplanned points. I cannot say that taking the third place can bring us something very special, but it is better that the fourth and the fifth place, it is a fact (smiles). It is good for a general ranking and for being in the better pool in the future. We did not talk about other details but my general estimation about qualifying circle is the following.
- Several days ago, there was announced the idea of holding Russian-Ukrainian championship. Gazprom will finance the tournament and the prize money is some astronomies amount (budget will be 1 Milliard USD). How real is it? Will it make FIFA and UEFA angry?
- It is very real. I do not think that it will be problem. There is a temporary committee in UEFA and I am member of it. I do not see something, which cannot be solved. As far as I know, Ukrainian club took the fifth place and it is the best among his compatriot clubs, they received the right of participation in Euro Cup. If the system is regulated, I think it is a good idea: the clubs, football players and coaches will get rich, there will be football matches on TV. The tournament will be more interesting for the fans of both of the countries. Interior matches cannot compare the match between “Dinamo” Kiev and “Spartak” Moscow. There is another intrigue. I repeat again, that I like the idea.
- Besides this, there is talk about a fantastic amount of money. Champion will get 92 million USD and the outsider 25 million USD...
- It is in such way in Turkey too. Every participant gets some prizes. The share of the big teams is higher from sold contracts. For example, if “Fererbahche” takes the fifth place and “Kasimpasha” the first, “Fener” will get more money from TV, because the contract is longer and it does not consist only one season.
- Some people are against this championship and some of them made posters at the skyscraper of Gazprom, as they say united championship means a restoration of the USSR…
- No, now we are talking about the participants- Russia and Ukraine, where the problem can be political. But for example if in Scandinavia, Sweden and Norway decide to hold a joint championship, what kind of poster they must make- that the USSR will be restored? One of the participants is Russia and we are in Georgia and that’s why everything has political reasons. Let’s imagine, that we will hold joint championship with Turkey and Azerbaijan, what does it mean, that we join one of them? It is a project and the federations of the countries will decide worth it to be held or not. These countries have to decide themselves what they want. As a football project for me it is a good idea.