Message from Iquitos
The following inspiring message from Father Joe Plumb, President of Bellavista Juventud FC in Iquitos, was passed on by his father Bernard Plumb to Bellavista Social Club in Newcastle, at the BSC’s first event at the Egypt Cottage on 17th April 2004.
Speech from Father of Father Joe
Things look good for the lads of Bellavista this season. The mood is positive, the camaraderie is tangible and having a new kit and 16 pairs of boots helps us feel ready for the new season. The team have recently won three training matches, ALL against First Division teams from the League of Iquitos. All of the 22 players are from Bellavista itself. We hope to wean down the team to 18 players who will make up the final squad for the 2004/5 season.
Two of the lads are ‘moto-carro’ (Iquitos-style motorbike taxi) drivers, several are still at school or studying at technology colleges or to get into the University but the majority and unemployed or rely on occasional jobs carrying cargo in the port or working as fare-collectors on buses. About ten of the lads haven’t finished secondary education and therefore have little possibility of gaining any permanent work.
Playing football for their ‘barrio’ gives them pride in their abilities, loyalty to one another and the contributions and efforts that YOU are making show them that SOMEONE believes and shows a concern for them.
We started training in March, running each morning at 5AM and meeting at 7pm to have a knock-around at the local school’s 5-a-side pitch. In April we’ve had three friendlies, and the good this is to see the understanding and good communication and real TEAM SPIRIT between the players when they’re on the pitch.
Mario, the physical fitness coach, is happy with the lads’ commitment and progress. Juan Vargas, or ‘Pata Larga’ (big foot) the technical coach, is getting good results from the new players. The ‘stars’ are Jackson and Ravi (although both are highly-strung and need to learn to control their tempers with the ref). ‘Yucca’ in defence is a good captain and organises his team-mates well. Our wingers Beto and Gustavo need a bit more pace and all the players could do with growing a few feet and filling out more – our main expense pre-season could be multi-vitamins and calcium supplements.
Your donations have helped us buy:
• 22 shirts, shorts and socks
• 22 bibs for training
• 8 pairs of boots (we had 8 pairs from last season still in good condition)
• 3 footballs
• 2 kit bags
• inscriptions for 15 players
• photo passes for 8 members of the directive for entry to the Max Agustin Stadium in Iquitos on match days
• bandages, rub (‘ralgex’ and ‘??’)
The season starts in July and there are 12 dates … we’ll keep you posted.
Thanks for ALL your support and please, if you pray, pray that the lads give up the booze and the women, at least before match days, as at present that’s the only thing between us and promotion this season!
Enjoy the party!