The Portuguese Football Federation Forgot Coimbra, Says Oliveira do Hospital Mayor

Photo: Noticias ao Minuto
Oliveira do Hospital mayor, José Carlos Alexandrino criticized the Portuguese Football Federation for "forgetting" the district of Coimbra. The mayor wants a solidarity game for the fire victims in Coimbra.
José Carlos Alexandrino who was re-elected by PS (Socialist Party) in the October 1st elections, criticized FPF (Portuguese Football Federation) for "forgetting Coimbra in the two national team solidarity games aimed to help the victims of the October 15 fires.
FPF is raising money for wildfire victims this year by selling tickets and by receiving phone calls for Portugal national team matches. The first match is against Saudi Arabia and the final is against the United States in Viseu and Leiria, respectively.
The first of the two games which is also a preparation for the final phase of the 2018 World Cup, was broadcast live on the three main television channels (RTP1, SIC and TVI). The game took place on Friday evening at the Stadium of Fontelo, in Viseu. The national team will face the United States on Tuesday at 20:45 in Leiria stadium.
José Carlos Alexandrino is surprised the Federation has announced the intention to give the money raised through this initiative to the victims of the fires in Viseu and Leiria region when the district of Coimbra was the most affected.
Only in the county of Oliveira do Hospital, the fires caused 12 deaths with several injured. It reached 170 homes and 95 companies with losses estimated at around 100 million euros. The fire also killed about 5,000 animals and destroyed 97% of the forest of the municipality, says the Câmara.
"Football has always served to unite peoples and nations. Especially after facing a tragedy like the one that has hit the district of Coimbra", noted Jose Carlos Alexandrino. He says he does not understand "the social insensitivity of the Portuguese Football Federation who is promoting solidarity initiatives with this territorial delimitation and with criteria likely to cause a revolt among the citizens of the district who have lost everything or almost everything."
As a "public entity", the FPF "has increased responsibilities," says the mayor of Oliveira do Hospital, calling for "solidarity" with "districts affected by the tragedy of the fires" and challenging the Federation leader, Fernando Gomes, to "repair this situation through the rapid arrangement of a solidarity game in the Municipal Stadium of Coimbra".
"It is the minimum that the FPF can do because faced with this catastrophe, we are all just a few people who can help bring happiness back to the victims of what was the worst Sunday of our lives," concludes José Carlos Alexandrino.
[The article originally appeared on Renascença. It was translated into English with some modification]